In MMA and Muay Thai, the way you throw your jab is different in how you do it in boxing. This is important for boxers who want to try MMA or Muay Thai since it might make them vulnerable to counter attacks if not being addressed. So let’s go over some common mistakes people make when they’re throwing their jab. Here are some common jab mistakes in Muay Thai and MMA.
The first one is the elbow flair. When throwing a jab a lot of times people will telegraph the jab by lifting their elbow up first and then throwing their jab. This makes the opponent prepare to counter or move away. The other problem with this habit is that it reduces the power of your jab. The important thing here is to try to think of your elbow as a shock absorber.
When you fully extend your elbow then flare it, it’ll reduce the speed and power since it bends in the wrong way. Make sure that the pit of your elbow is facing up as it gives you nice shoulder stability. It will also make your jab straighter and faster.
Dropping the rear hand
The next one is a bit more common, dropping your rear hand. When you jab and you drop your rear hand or if you pull back with your right hand to get more extension with your hips, it’ll expose your legs for low kicks in Muay Thai. My advice is when you jab or pullback, keep your rear hand by your cheek. Don’t pull back and drop your rear hand.
Trailing the Jab
When you throw your jab, avoid making a circular motion with your arms. Make sure to bring back your arms as fast as you throw your jabs for you to be ready for another jab. Many beginners forget that to have an effective jab you need to bring it back to its original position. By retracting the jab lazily after throwing a jab, and by not bringing it back quickly to its original position on defense, you become open to counters.
Not Pushing off the Back Foot
When you jab without pushing off your back foot, your jab is less powerful. Make sure you put more weight on your jabs by putting the weight from your back foot. It will give you more distance to reach your opponent and make your jabs much effective.
Turning the Leg Inward
This is particularly for Muay Thai and MMA where your legs are more open for leg kicks. Don’t overextend your jabs as it makes your knee blade exposed.
Also, avoid moving in and out in a straight line. Make sure you practice your entry and exit by making angles. It will confuse your opponents from knowing where you end up after throwing a jab. This will make you avoid a preemptive counterpunch.
Never walk straight into the line of fire. Make sure you use your jab efficiently, and you’ll be snapping your opponent’s head and give you an advantage.