There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to chase down an overly defensive or fast boxer who never sits still for you to punch if you don’t know how to cut off the ring. The more you chase them, the more they run away from you. The only thing worse than a fighter who constantly runs away from you is one who lands clean punches on you as they
Learning how to properly cut off the ring can help avoid finding yourself in this predicament. Boxing rings are only that big, so there’s always a way to force your opponent to hang out a bit at your preferred range if you know what you’re doing. Cut off the ring well enough, and your opponent won’t have anywhere to run.
Effective Ways To Cut The Ring In Boxing
There are a handful of things that you can do that make it harder for opponents to run away from you. These include:
1) Never Chase
This is one of the most common mistakes boxing novices make when they find themselves going against opponents who prefer to fight on their back foot. Running directly at an opponent is a natural response, but it’s one of the worst things you can do inside the ring.
For starters, you’ll never catch them by running directly at them and you make it easier for them to escape sideways. Secondly, running forward aggressively toward an opponent also leaves you vulnerable to their punches as your forward movement becomes predictable. For example, techniques like the check hook work off anticipating an opponent’s forward movement.
Instead of mindlessly moving forward toward an evasive opponent like a bull, look to cut off the space inside the ring, forcing your opponent to go where you want them to be. In boxing, you don’t trap opponents by taking their space, you do it by not giving them anywhere to go. Keep this in mind the next time you find yourself chasing down an opponent.
2) Move Laterally
This ties into what we said earlier about cutting off the ring. You cut off the ring by moving laterally, keeping your opponent in front of you as they try to run away. If your opponent takes a step to their left, you mirror their lateral movement by taking a step to your right.
This prevents your opponent from being able to run around you and only allows them to move backward. This eventually leads to them being trapped along the ropes since you’ve taken away their ability to go around you. The closer you get your opponent toward the ropes, the easier it becomes to cut off the ring.
Cutting off the ring forces fast and defensive boxers to engage with you more than they are comfortable with, and it can be mentally draining on them when done right. Frustration might start to seep in all their attempts to go around you fail and they find themselves trapped around the ropes.
3) Use The Corners
The ideal spot you want to trap evasive opponents is the corner of the ring. This makes it easier for you to trap them with your lateral movement, keeping them stuck in the corner where you can unload barrages on them.
Herd your opponent into a corner as you mirror their movements laterally to prevent them from getting around you. Take away all their space until they have no choice but to end up trapped.
4) Keep Opponents In Front Of You By Backing Away When Needed
Getting your opponent trapped in a corner is only half of the equation. You still need to work on your offense and make the most of the opportunity. This means you still have to carefully manage distances to set up your offense and avoid any punches they throw.
Generally speaking, you never want to get too close to an opponent when you have them trapped in a corner since that makes it easier for them to pivot away from you. Instead, keep some space between you and your opponent to deny them opportunities to pivot away from you. The closer you are to an opponent, the easier it is for them to pivot away.
You should also be careful with your punch selection when you have opponents trapped in the corner since successful slips put them in a position to escape.
5) Don’t Be Overly Aggressive
This ties into the last point we made. Senseless aggression makes it easier for opponents to clinch up with you and spin you into the corner. It also makes it easier for them to pivot around you. It’s easy to get carried away after you’ve chased an opponent around a ring for most of a fight and you finally trap them where you want, but you need to be patient in these situations.
Get the most out of your hard work by taking your time to pick your opponent apart once you have them stuck in a corner.
6) Wear Down Evasive Opponents With The Drowning Style
The drowning style in boxing is used to wear down evasive opponents while minimizing your energy expenditure. It involves applying constant pressure on opponents by taking away their space as they try to run from you. You simultaneously throw light punches at your opponent whenever you’re in range, and counter their offense with hard shots.
The key to making the drowning style work for you is not giving your opponent any room to breathe. You should be on them as soon as they bell for each round as you pester and take their space from them. Boxers moving on their backfoot use up more energy than those moving forward, so the drowning style helps to tire out evasive boxers.
There’s a good chance your opponent will eventually settle down and stand their ground after you’ve worn them down with the drowning style.
7) Bounce In And Out When Cutting The Ring
You don’t have to stand there and allow your opponent to execute their offense just because you’re trying to cut off the ring. Instead, bounce in and out of your opponent’s range, without ever giving up ground. This makes you a harder target to hit.
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