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SPACEDOODLE

The Mirror - Using the Mirror as a Training Tool

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Hello all!

 

Hope this post finds you well!

 

I was wondering what everyone's thoughts were on the use of a mirror prior to shadow boxing or even hitting the bags. I ask because there is a nice big mirror at my gym; however, I have never really used it prior to working on the bag, pads, or class. 

 

So here is the question: What should I do in fron tof the mirror and what should I be paying attention to at the same time?

 

Thanks so much!

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Shadow boxing for sure. Don't do it mindlessly though, look at and work on something specific. For example I have a bad habit of lifting a little bit when I throw my cross so I watch in the mirror to make sure my shoulders stay parallel to the floor. I look at my form and look where my weight is centered throughout different movements. Watch your legs/hips to make sure they are moving first and rotating properly to help generate power. The important thing to remember is that it is a tool and piece of training equipment not a regular mirror. Too many people just watch themselves instead of studying themselves. Ask your coaches or training partners to help you make corrections to your form and then practice the correct form in the mirror. You can also use it to practice maintaining eye contact while doing shadow close to the mirror, though I prefer to use a partner if someone is available.

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One boxing coach I had in my teens used a dry-erase marker to draw a grid (think a tic-tac-toe game) in front of me.  He instructed me to use it to help with slipping and rolling as well as pick targets other than just the head (i.e., liver, solar plexus, etc) during shadow.  I felt it really helped.  

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5 minutes ago, Tyler Byers said:

That's an interesting idea, I've not heard of that before. Similar to putting tape on a heavy bag I would imagine.

Yup.  But I felt it was most effective for learning to move my head off centerline and maintain balance with movement.

 

18 hours ago, SPACEDOODLE said:

Hello all!

 

Hope this post finds you well!

 

I was wondering what everyone's thoughts were on the use of a mirror prior to shadow boxing or even hitting the bags. I ask because there is a nice big mirror at my gym; however, I have never really used it prior to working on the bag, pads, or class. 

 

So here is the question: What should I do in fron tof the mirror and what should I be paying attention to at the same time?

 

Thanks so much!

I remembered another thing I like about shadowboxing in front of a mirror--it's great for working on feints and fakes.  

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23 hours ago, SPACEDOODLE said:

So here is the question: What should I do in fron tof the mirror and what should I be paying attention to at the same time?

 

Thanks so much!

If you watch my sessions with Chatchai, he looks at me in the mirror and stands in front of me to kind of "eyeball calibrate" my form. I stole it from him. It's totally like he's looking down a pool cue. I noticed that he's seeing where my weight is blowing out on one side or the other, if my one shoulder is higher than the other, etc. So, now I look for that kind of thing in the mirror for myself. I call it "breaking the frame" when my body leans or bends instead of the weight transferring all together. That's what I use the mirror for.

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On 7/2/2019 at 12:57 AM, Tyler Byers said:

e important thing to remember is that it is a tool and piece of training equipment not a regular mirror.

Hello!

So I tried this the other day and I noticed how it quickly transitioned to pad work. At least, that is what my training partner noticed a few hours after working on the mirror. What I noticed was that I would be leaning too far forward on my crosses and not rotate my hip enough. I would also focus on my frame to make sure my elbows would not be fanning out while I throw a jab or cross. 

Hooks are proving a little troublesome for me, as I do not really know what to look out for in terms of correct/incorrect technique. I just know some hooks "feel" good while others "feel" bad. 

On 7/2/2019 at 3:01 AM, OldBones said:

One boxing coach I had in my teens used a dry-erase marker to draw a grid

I want to try this but I do not know if my gym would allow it. I'll have to talk to my coach and see if we cannot try it.

On 7/2/2019 at 9:35 AM, Sylvie von Duuglas-Ittu said:

now I look for that kind of thing in the mirror for myself. I call it "breaking the frame" when my body leans or bends instead of the weight transferring all together

I noticed I would "break the frame" on knees and teeps with the mirror. But, I am not entirely sure how to correct these except trying to over-compensate with my hips and leaning back more on the teeps. Not entirely sure how to address the body leaning I observed in the mirror. Maybe it is simple conscious movement and making sure I do not lean one way or another while teeping or throwing knees? I dunno. 🤷🏽‍♂️

Thanks so much for the advice, everyone! This really helped and made my life a whole lot better!

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2 hours ago, SPACEDOODLE said:

Hooks are proving a little troublesome for me, as I do not really know what to look out for in terms of correct/incorrect technique. I just know some hooks "feel" good while others "feel" bad.

I like to stop at certain places to check my form. The main place I stop and look while doing hooks is as my body is torqued to one side just prior to throwing the hook. This allows me to make sure my weight is centered and balanced, my shoulder is over my opposite knee (if throwing a right hook, the left shoulder should be directly over and inline with the right knee). I do this both facing the mirror and from a side perspective to make sure I'm not leaning backwards or forwards. I also check my guard to make sure that my defense is solid (shoulder blocking my chin on one side, glove on the other) as many people get caught as they are beginning to throw the hook. I do the whole sequence very slowly and progressively move quicker to generate more power. I also stop at the end of the hook to again recheck balance and make sure I haven't over-extended (right shoulder should not be past the left knee at this point). There should be a ton of boxing videos that will break this down for you. I'm sure they can add more than what I can. 

Edit: Something I forgot to add is that it is really important to use your waist/hips to create power. I see a lot of people trying to "push" their hooks using hip on the same side (if throwing a right hook as described above, they will drive that right hip forward). I don't know that this is "wrong" but I've found it really helpful to instead "pull" using my opposite (left hip in this scenario). Makes my hooks much more snappy and keeps me balanced. Just something to try and see if it works for you.  

 

2 hours ago, SPACEDOODLE said:

I noticed I would "break the frame" on knees and teeps with the mirror. But, I am not entirely sure how to correct these except trying to over-compensate with my hips and leaning back more on the teeps. Not entirely sure how to address the body leaning I observed in the mirror. Maybe it is simple conscious movement and making sure I do not lean one way or another while teeping or throwing knees?

Would you mind posting some video of this? It sounds like you are simply off balance, but I'd like to see it before I put my foot in my mouth with ill-advice lol.

Edited by Tyler Byers
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Not just for shadow but also good for those hand weight things. Only doing 1, 2s but not in your stance, just neutral and flat, so only looking for upper body to fix this, the thing where the punch comes back in straight and quick to protect the head as the other one goes out to hit, back and forth etc, and check both sides for constant protection. Because punching was always my weakest thing. So nothing but weighted 1 2s for 5 min straight and make sure my sketchy punch comes back to sender. Every day, added up, it kinda helps. 

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