Hook punch

paitingman

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Vertical, almost always.

If you don't flare the elbow out until fairly late in the movement, you have the option to turn it over towards the end.

Getting the elbow high up early for maybe a more powerful hook can make it difficult to shift backward and adjust range quickly, so I tend to keep it vertical with a tighter elbow.

I usually land with the lower knuckles, but I wear gloves a lot.
and I end up landing with my palm area about as often.
 
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Gerry Seymour

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Is your hook punch with a vertical or horizontal fist?
Do you strike with the first 2 knuckles or the last 3 knuckles?
The first two knuckles, usually. I haven't paid a lot of attention, but just trying it out now (on the air, because air deserves to be hit), I just let my hand sit naturally, about 45 degrees when I'm punching near head height. If I'm punching lower, it gets close to vertical.

Which has me wondering if there's a reason I should pay attention to the hand position.
 

Gerry Seymour

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That sounds like grabbing an over hook? Different sort of hook.
I think the upper arm motion is much the same as a downward hook (think of a hook coming over a glove guard). The rest of the arm is different, but I can see why John thinks of it filling the "hook punch" space for him.
 

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Any of you guys throw a leaping hook? Its where you circle your upper body down and around (like ducking) and as youre coming back up you do a little leap step with both feet.
Basically, its a really loooong hook punch.
 

dvcochran

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The first two knuckles, usually. I haven't paid a lot of attention, but just trying it out now (on the air, because air deserves to be hit), I just let my hand sit naturally, about 45 degrees when I'm punching near head height. If I'm punching lower, it gets close to vertical.

Which has me wondering if there's a reason I should pay attention to the hand position.
I think you should. @paitingman made some good points about elbow position; then went off track saying hit with the lower knuckles, IMHO. I think that is a very bad idea. I am left handed and broke the ring finger bone above the knuckle on my right hand with a horizontal hook. They turned their head and I hit them behind the ear (bar fight). It was a very effective punch but I knew I had done something wrong right away. I had to have the bone set and a cast for a while.
 

Tony Dismukes

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Striking surface: 1st two knuckles.
Hooks to the body: vertical fist
Close range hook to the head: horizontal fist
Long range hook to the head: the fist starts moving towards vertical, but usually ends up somewhere in-between horizontal and vertical
 
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Any of you guys throw a leaping hook? Its where you circle your upper body down and around (like ducking) and as youre coming back up you do a little leap step with both feet.
Basically, its a really loooong hook punch.

Can you post a video of it?
 
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The first two knuckles, usually. I haven't paid a lot of attention, but just trying it out now (on the air, because air deserves to be hit), I just let my hand sit naturally, about 45 degrees when I'm punching near head height. If I'm punching lower, it gets close to vertical.

Which has me wondering if there's a reason I should pay attention to the hand position.

I've been thinking lately about punches vs. open-hand strikes and when I'd use what. This post made me think of that. (For example, I'd use a fist with a hook punch or body blow, but open-hand strike to the neck or nose).
 

dvcochran

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I've been thinking lately about punches vs. open-hand strikes and when I'd use what. This post made me think of that. (For example, I'd use a fist with a hook punch or body blow, but open-hand strike to the neck or nose).
Why?
 
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One reason is because this is the tendency of the self defense drills my Master teaches.

However, as I've thought about it for myself, it's a combination of the angle my arm is at when I strike there, and my intention with the target. When I attack the head, I realize most of the damage is going to be caused by the brain rattling around and the neck twisting, moreso than damage to the face itself. So I want whatever is going to achieve that effect. When I attack the neck or the body, I want penetration into the tissue. In both cases, there's also the question of how easy it is to concentrate the striking force. So looking at each specifically:
  • Face - there's a lot of hard bones in the face, a palm-heel is safer. I've also got a good angle to isolate the heel of my palm. A backfist is a good alternative here.
  • Cheek - I don't have a good angle to isolate my palm-heel, so I'd opt for a hook punch to concentrate the blow.
  • Neck - A knife-hand will get a narrower strike than a fist, which will hit the soft tissues in the neck easier. Because the neck is more sharply rounded than the rest of the targets, it makes it easier to concentrate the blow onto one part of the knife-hand.
  • Body - Again, I don't have a good angle for a palm strike, so I opt for a closed fist
 
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Most people would have figured it out after the first one, but I am a scientist and needed to increase my sample size.

I've heard that "once is a mistake, twice is a coincidence, thrice is a problem." So far all we have is a coincidence.
 

paitingman

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I think you should. @paitingman made some good points about elbow position; then went off track saying hit with the lower knuckles, IMHO. I think that is a very bad idea. I am left handed and broke the ring finger bone above the knuckle on my right hand with a horizontal hook. They turned their head and I hit them behind the ear (bar fight). It was a very effective punch but I knew I had done something wrong right away. I had to have the bone set and a cast for a while.
That sounds like a nasty injury! How long was the recovery time? Any lingering effects from the break that you can tell?

I've never hurt my hands, but as stated, I normally wear gloves (but no wraps) and am always pretty careful.

If I don't feel like I can connect cleanly with the lower 3, I'll go with the first 2. And if I don't have time or don't feel like I have an angle, I swat and slap instead.
I also rarely punch full force.
You could say that I normally sacrifice power in order to connect from the distance and angle I want. (Something else to work on.)

As to why, short answer is that it feels better to me. I haven't dissected too far into why it does, but I've practiced landing this way a lot so it probably is just more natural at this point. (Something else to unravel.)
 
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dvcochran

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That sounds like a nasty injury! How long was the recovery time? Any lingering effects from the break that you can tell?

I've never hurt my hands, but as stated, I normally wear gloves (but no wraps) and am always pretty careful.

If I don't feel like I can connect cleanly with the lower 3, I'll go with the first 2. And if I don't have time or don't feel like I have an angle, I swat and slap instead.
I also rarely punch full force.
You could say that I normally sacrifice power in order to connect from the distance and angle I want. (Something else to work on.)

As to why, short answer is that it feels better to me. I haven't dissected too far into why it does, but I've practiced landing this way a lot so it probably is just more natural at this point. (Something else to unravel.)
It was around 30 years ago. I think I wore the cast for about a month. It ached for a while but fully healed.
 

JR 137

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Most people would have figured it out after the first one, but I am a scientist and needed to increase my sample size.
Two isnt anywhere near a proper scientific sample size. Too much margin of error, statistically anomalies, etc. Your sample size should be at least 100 to be considered valid.

Keep at it!

:)
 

Gerry Seymour

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I've been thinking lately about punches vs. open-hand strikes and when I'd use what. This post made me think of that. (For example, I'd use a fist with a hook punch or body blow, but open-hand strike to the neck or nose).
I stop and think about those sometimes, too. After I've been working the heavy bag a while (where I will mix open and closed strikes, unless I'm wearing restrictive gloves), I'll stop and ask myself why I used an open hand on this strike and close on the other one. For me, it seems to mostly come down to what feels right for the angle, target, and power. I haven't been able to identify a rule I can pass along.
 
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I stop and think about those sometimes, too. After I've been working the heavy bag a while (where I will mix open and closed strikes, unless I'm wearing restrictive gloves), I'll stop and ask myself why I used an open hand on this strike and close on the other one. For me, it seems to mostly come down to what feels right for the angle, target, and power. I haven't been able to identify a rule I can pass along.

My rule of thumb (no pun intended) is I prefer open-hand, but if it feels like a slap instead of a heel-strike, I prefer a fist.
 

Gerry Seymour

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My rule of thumb (no pun intended) is I prefer open-hand, but if it feels like a slap instead of a heel-strike, I prefer a fist.
The best I've been able to identify about myself is that I prefer fists to the body (except that I like a palm-heel if I can am using a shoulder to open things up - it seems to affect their structure more), open hands to the head and face (mostly) except for a hook or a quick jab. And even as I type that, the statement is more definitive than reality.
 

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