Boxing Styles

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“Styles make fights.” An old boxing adage that we hear often. Inevitably the question of who has the best fighting style and what constitutes a recognized style, will be debated. Here are some of the most common fighting styles that we see in boxing. Which do you think best suits you?

Swarmer

The word swarm itself invokes images of buzzing bees, densely packed together, busy and always on the move. That is the style of a swarmer. Up close and personal, often throwing many punches a round, rarely, if ever, taking a breather and always pressing forward. Swarmers are notoriously hard to deal with due to the pressure they put on their opponent. But that itself is a double edged sword as a swarmer has to be physical enough to maintain this approach. When coupled with boundless stamina, a chin of granite and constant head movement, they can be any opponents’ worse nightmare. However, once their gas tank is drained and they lose their ability to move and press forward, they often get picked apart with even the toughest of chins having a shelf life.

Examples of Swarmers:

  1. Joe Frazier
  2. Ricky Hatton
  3. Mike Tyson
  4. Henry Armstrong

Boxer

The titular style for the aforementioned sport. The “pure” boxers, as you’re likely to have heard them referred to as, are the ring generals, chess masters who prefer to maintain a distance from their opponent and pick their spots to punch and attack. They often dictate the pace of the fight and maneuver out of the way of straightforward attacks. Typically most pure boxers wear their opponent down from multiple punches and aren’t usually known for having outstanding punching power. They’re widely regarded for having good footwork, reflexes and timing. They invariably don’t do well with opponents who crowd them and don’t allow them the space to move and punch. Opponents with awkward styles and punches also do well against them.

Examples of Pure Boxers:

  1. Floyd Mayweather
  2. Pernell Whitaker
  3. Willie Pep
  4. Muhammad Ali (Truthfully he deserves a style and class of his own)

Brawlers/Sluggers

See those crazy knockout highlight reels? The devastating punching power that keeps people from ever actually being in their seats? These are the guys that are usually responsible. They’re explosive, exciting and always good fun to watch. Though generally considered the least skilled of the styles, they make up for it with truckloads of knockout power, aggression and relentless pressure. Often times their lack of footwork, defensive abilities or ring savvy is what holds them back.

Examples of Brawlers/Sluggers:

  1. Aturo Gatti
  2. George Foreman
  3. Manny Pacquiao
  4. Roberto Duran

Till next time! – AJ

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