10 Pull-Back Combinations For Boxing

The pull-back is a defensive technique that’s quite popular in boxing for various reasons, like how intuitive the technique becomes once you’ve drilled it enough times. The technique is typically most effective at outside distances, and it’s an effective way to get out of the way of punches.

There’s not much to executing the pull-back besides moving your head back about the length of one of your feet and firing off a punch as your opponent brings their arm back to their guard. The goal of pulling back on a punch is to land your counter before your opponent reestablishes their guard.

Pull-back counters can be so effective when executed correctly that you might as well put a few more punches behind them to capitalize on the opportunity. Just imagine the look on your opponent’s face when they swing with all their might, and you effortlessly lean out of the way before countering with a combination that’ll make them wish they never stepped inside the ring with you.

Those who have mastered the art of pull-back combinations, like Floyd Mayweather, often lean their heads forward and drop their hands to goad opponents into throwing punches so they can pull back and counter with hard shots.

This article will break down some effective combinations you can launch after pulling back to evade an attack.


Ten Pull-Back Combinations Every Boxer Should Know

Let’s dive into our list of effective pull-back combinations without further ado.


1) Cross, Lead Hook, Cross

Here’s a pull-back combination that’s effective on all levels of boxing. A right hand is one of the most straightforward counters to land after successfully pulling away from a punch, especially if you’re countering a jab.

Jabs are one of the most used punches in boxing, so you should be able to anticipate when your opponent will throw them as your sparring match or fight unfolds. Assuming you and your opponent are both using the same stance, their jab hand is on the same side of your rear hand, which means that the side of their head is exposed as they jab at you.

There’s an excellent chance the cross will land flush if you time it right and connect before their jabbing hand returns to their face. Follow that up by immediately throwing a hard lead hook and another cross.


2) Jab, Cross, Shovel Hook

This hard-hitting combination can bring a fight to an end when executed properly. It starts with a jab to start the combination then a cross to continue to combo. You then fire off a shovel hook that’s aimed right at your opponent’s liver. Landing a cross first could lead your opponent to anticipate a follow-up punch to the head, exposing their liver to the shovel hook.


3) Double Jab, Cross

This combination often works best when you and your opponent are in a closed stance, meaning one of you is using an orthodox stance while the other is in the southpaw stance. This puts your jabbing hands on the same side, so you can pull back to avoid their jab and follow up with a double jab, followed by a slight pivot out of the centerline and a cross.


4) Lead Uppercut, Cross, Lead Body Hook

Here’s a more advanced combination that can bring a fight to an abrupt end if it connects flush. It often works best when used to counter a looping punch since it’s hard to pull off if you’re at an outside distance.

The technique involves pulling back just enough to get out of a punch’s way and firing off a lead uppercut before your opponent can bring their hand back to their guard. You might have to step in to close the distance when throwing the uppercut, depending on how far away you are from the target. Follow the uppercut up with a stiff cross down the centerline and a hook to the body.

The uppercut should be thrown from a slightly crouched position so you can generate power with your legs to make it more devastating. Straighten your body up as the punch makes an impact for maximum effect.


8) Lead Hook To Body, Lead Hook To Head, Cross

Use this hard-hitting combination to make opponents pay when they try to close the distance on you. Pull back to get out of the punch’s way and immediately fire off a hard hook to the body aiming at the liver. Look to start throwing the hook to the head as you lean back to ensure your opponent’s hand isn’t back in time to protect their face.

Lastly, throw the lead hook to the head with enough power to leave them stunned while you follow up with an equally powerful cross.


9) Jab, Cross, Lead Hook

Here’s a triple-threat special that can leave your opponent stunned. It starts with you dodging their jab by pulling your head away, before making your opponent pay by throwing a cross. You then follow up with a lead hook that should weave around your opponent’s head and land flush on the side of their head.

The key to pulling off this combination is speed. Countering your opponent’s jab with a cross can cause them to panic and instinctively bring both hands to the front of their face to block it. This leaves the side of their head wide open for your lead hook. You want to throw all three punches before your opponent can react intelligently.


10) Jab, Rear Uppercut To Body, Rear Uppercut To Head

This combination works best against aggressive opponents looking to close the distance. Throw a jab to measure the distance between you and your opponent. As they try to cover up, exposing their midsection, immediately throw the rear uppercut to the body.

After the first uppercut, pull your hips and shoulder back to generate more power in the uppercut to the head once your opponent drops their guard to defend the rear body uppercut. Then, execute the rear uppercut from the guard immediately in a vertical upward motion.


Add Pull-Back Combinations To Your Boxing Game

Punish your opponents by pulling away from their attacks and following up with one of the combinations listed above. Drill them until they become part of your muscle memory so you can instinctively throw them during your sparring matches or fights.


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