Another Unique Combination With Jake Mainini
One of the most important things you can do while striking is to use each move to set you up for the next one. While sparring, things transpire quickly and you need to be able to act and react accordingly. Remembering that each movement should set you up to flow into the next one will allow you to quickly land multi strike combinations, and keep you moving one step ahead of your partner.
Jake Mainini, a Muay Thai Specialist with over 20 years of training experience and over 7 years of competing experience has definitely perfected his game. His training experience combined with his education in exercise science has paved his path of success over the years.
Check out this video to see Jake Mainini give another perfect example of the importance of loading yourself up for the next strike.
During this combination in this video, Jake explains the intention of certain strikes being based off of his striking partners reactions. His long career has given him the ability to accurately predict how most people are going to react after being hit a certain way and from a certain direction. These are important things to pay attention to and be mindful of when learning a new combination as it will advantageously prepare you to get the jump on your opponents reaction when executing the combination outside of training.
To begin the video, Jake explains that the combination is going to be built off of a lead cross kick check into a right cross. This means that as Jake is standing in an orathadox stance leading with his left leg forward, his partner goes for an inside leg kick on that lead leg. Jake lifts that lead leg to check (block) the kick, and when he puts weight back down on that lead leg he uses that forward momentum to strike with a right cross. Moving forward with the right cross brings Jake into the pocket, placing him in the position he needs to be to finish the combination.
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Once he is in the pocket, Jake uses the momentum moving forward from his right cross to land a left body shot. Often a powerful body shot provides enough shock to your opponent that they drop their hands from their face, not to mention it’s just painful and stunning either way. Jake takes advantage of this in continuing with the combination.
Again, the momentum created from the left body shot loads up his right side, where he comes in with a right downward elbow to the face. Whether or not your opponent drops their hand after the body shot does not make or break the effectiveness of the elbow. It is going to hurt and get your opponents attention.
At this point in the combination, Jake assumes that after taking 3 major blows his opponent is now looking to throw something back. Based on his current position, it is likely that the most available option of his opponent would be to throw a right hook.
Anticipating this, Jake brings his arm up to his head to block the hook. An important detail to pay attention to here is that when Jake raises his arm to block the punch, his glove is attached to his head. If it were not, that right hook would land on Jakes glove and then his own glove would be striking himself in the head. It is important to keep that arm attached to your head when blocking a punch in an attempt to minimize as much force as possible.
Since his opponent threw the right hook, his right hand is no longer guarding his face. Also since Jake is using proper technique, even though he is blocking the hook with his left arm his right arm is still up protecting his face. This leaves a clear path for Jake to finish the combination with his right elbow to the face of his partner.
At the end of the technique Jake emphasizes that the whole time he is in the pocket his hands never leave his face, and this is for multiple different reasons.
To start, when in the pocket it is difficult to create an angle to start attacking from, which leaves you more open to getting hit so you need to protect yourself. When you stay tight in the pocket and keep yourself covered, it limits the opportunities of your opponent while also keeping you safe.
Also for this combination in particular, keeping your hand up by your face gives you great access to your elbows. Since you are keeping yourself tight, it is likely that your opponent will be going for something like a wide hook to get around your hands. This opens him up and allows you to come in quickly with elbows.
In sparring with your training partner, it can be difficult to get a lot of reps of elbow strikes because it’s harder to just tap your partner with an elbow without hurting them than it is to tap them with your glove. It is important to practice your precision with your elbows because elbow strikes can be super quick and effective in a fight and cause a lot of damage.
Jakes videos and techniques are so useful because he is constantly basing them off an opponent's potential reaction. This is a skill he has picked up from years of experience, and is not something that everyone has. Training while being aware of your opponents potential reaction will only make it more natural while sparring or in a fight.
If you want to pick up the skills and technique that Jake has been perfecting throughout his entire career, you are not going to want to miss everything else he has to offer in his instructional.