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The 10 Most Important Boxing Combos To Master - 2023

Robert Green
Published: July 18, 2023
Updated: July 18, 2023

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The sport of boxing has a deep and intricate skill set that every aspiring fighter needs to master. One of these elements are boxing combinations. As the heart of boxing strategy, combinations give a boxer their unique fighting style and competitive edge.

Furthermore, becoming a student of the game by researching and watching boxing events is invaluable. You learn the best techniques from the pros themselves, and viewing different strategies and combinations in action gives much needed context to practice and training.

In this piece, we'll explore the ten most important boxing combinations which every boxer, whether amateur or professional, should master for an effective and versatile repertoire.

We'll also include helpful, step by step diagrams of each boxing combo, so you know exactly how to get it done.

The Jab-Cross Combo

The jab and cross combo constitute the backbone of most boxing techniques. The jab, a straight punch thrown from the guard position, serves as a quick and effective way to initiate an attack while maintaining a defensive stand. The jab keeps the opponent at bay, setting up for the cross.

The cross, a power punch thrown with your dominant hand, is responsible for doing significant damage to your opponent. To execute the jab-cross combo, start with a quick jab aiming for your opponent’s head or body followed swiftly by a cross.

This combination can effectively throw the opponent off balance and opens them up for even more punches.

Mastering this combo involves perfecting timing and precision. Work on executing the cross the moment your jab makes contact. Also, maintain a high guard to ensure your defenses are not lowered when you attack.

The Hook-Uppercut Combo

The hook and uppercut are notoriously powerful punches. The hook is designed to be thrown at close range, aiming for the side of the opponent’s head or body. It is often used to break through the opponent’s defense.

The uppercut is a powerful punch thrown upwards causing a great deal of damage, usually targeting the opponent's chin or body.

To execute this combo, land a strong hook to your opponent’s side, followed by a swift uppercut. This will likely leave your opponent staggered, momentarily lowering their defenses.

Mastering this combo requires you to perfect the momentum shift between the hook and the uppercut. The movement of your body, through the hook, naturally sets up the uppercut, creating a fluid and devastating combination.

The One-Two-Three Combo

This combo involves three punches: a jab, a cross, and a hook in that order, and its purpose is to overwhelm an opponent's defenses with rapid, successive strokes. To execute, start with a quick jab, followed by a forceful cross, and then swiftly morph the cross into a hook.

Mastering the one-two-three combo necessitates the enhancement of speed and accuracy. Rhythm and timing are essential, and practicing on a punch bag will help maintain a steady flow between the punches.

The Jab-Hook Combo

The jab-hook combo serves to quickly destabilize an opponent. Starting with a jab follows the typical initial move, which can lead the opponent to anticipate a straight punch pattern. The ensuing surprise hook can then land effectively. The key to mastering this jab-hook combo is to ensure that the hook comes in swiftly and immediately after the jab.

The Uppercut-Jab-Cross Combo

This combination starts with an uppercut, followed by a quick jab and a powerful cross. It is designed to use the uppercut as a surprising introductory move that upsets an opponent’s balance and opens up their defenses for the jab and cross. Mastering this challenging combo requires a great deal of precision and fluidity across the three punches, with each punch setting up the next.

The Double Jab-Cross Combo

In the double jab-cross combo, two rapid jabs are used to initiate the attack, maintain pressure, and set up the opponent for a cross punch. It’s an effective tool in keeping opponents at a distance and on their toes. Master this combo by working on your speed, aiming to launch the cross immediately after the second jab lands.

The Slip-Hook Combo

The slip-hook combo involves defensive and offensive measures. The slip is a defensive boxing technique to avoid an incoming punch, while simultaneously positioning the boxer favorably for an attack.

The hook, used offensively here, lands either on the body or head, taking advantage of the opponent's open guard during their punch.

To execute this combo, as your opponent throws a punch, move or 'slip' your head to the side to evade it, and immediately unleash a hook.

Master this technique by practicing your movements' fluidity, ensuring the hook is ready to launch as soon as the 'slip' is performed.

The Lead Hook-Rear Hook Combo

The lead hook-rear hook combo taps into the power of both your hands. A lead hook, thrown with the leading hand, serves as a damaging and effective tool for initiating attacks.

The rear hook, thrown with the power hand, maximizes reach and power, often landing as a surprise for the opponent.

To execute this combo, throw a lead hook followed swiftly by a rear hook. Master the technique by practicing how to shift weight and rotate your body in tight, compact movements.

The Liver Shot Combo

A liver shot is a punch targeted at the opponent’s liver, an area not protected by the rib cage. It can cause immediate, debilitating pain, often leading to knockouts.

This combo typically starts with a distracting jab or cross, subsequently followed by the targeted liver shot.

Mastering the liver shot involves precision unlike any other, as it requires you to aim for a specific, relatively small area. Timing is critical because the liver shot needs to be perfectly positioned after a quick jab to the face that misdirects the opponent’s attention.


Mastering boxing combinations increases a boxer's versatility, improves their style and game strategy, and significantly boosts their efficiency in the ring.

These ten mentioned combinations are excellent starting points for any aspiring boxer. However, the learning doesn't stop here.

Continue researching and watching boxing events, observe how the greats execute these same combinations, and infuse your style with your unique flair.

Boxing is as much an art as it is a sport, and these combinations are the fundamental strokes of painting your masterpiece in the ring. Keep practicing, and keep raising the bar!

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