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How To Land The Perfect Rear Cross With Teddy Atlas

How To Land The Perfect Rear Cross With Teddy Atlas

The right hand is the signature punch in boxing. It quite possibly is one of the most important weapons in any striker's arsenal, whether they compete in MMA, Boxing, Kickboxing or whatever sport. If you aren’t able to use this technique competently, then that’s a problem that you're going to need to fix. If you don’t then you aren’t going to be making it very far in the hurt business. 

There is a big problem that a lot of strikers tend to have when they first start training. That problem being that they have a hard time finding the right timing on their rear hand. This can be really frustrating as most fighters will want to land their power rear hand shot. This is where waiting for your opponent to come to you to land a rear cross is a good option. 

Using the rear hand as a counter is actually where the cross gets its name. This is because the rear straight would cross over the jab of an opponent as a counter in orthodox vs orthodox match ups. Even if it isn’t going over a jab, the rear cross is still a solid counter in a ton of situations. 

In this video, the legendary boxing coach Teddy Atlas talks about how to set up and land the perfect rear cross counter. If you're a striker and haven’t ever heard of Teddy Atlas before, then you really need to fix that. Teddy Atlas is a boxing coach, analyst and commentator who has been around for decades. He’s worked with countless legends of the sport like Mike Tyson, Micheal Moorer and many others. 


This video where coach atlas goes over the cross counter is more of a lecture than a technique tutorial. The video starts off with Atlas talking about the importance of being tough mentally. Coach Atlas says that 75% percent of being successful, whether it’s in boxing or in life, is about the mental game. Controlling your imagination and emotions so that you can be calm in the chaos of the storm. 

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Coach Atlas also goes over the importance of being at the right place at the right time. Just like with the mental aspect, this doesn’t just extend to boxing, but to pretty much every aspect of life. Coach Atlas goes on to say that people aren’t just in the right place at the right time out of luck. People are in the right place and the right time because they are calm and aware of what's happening. That way they are prepared and in control and ready to be in the right place at the right time. 

This is why it seems that a lot of spectacular counter punches can come out of nowhere, when in fact that fighter was ready to throw that youtube the whole time. With all this in mind, Teddy goes on to talk about the cross counter over the jab. Atlas cites the famous “Phantom Punch” that Muhammad Ali threw in his second fight against Sonny Liston that put Liston down. 

Atlas emphasizes that the timing is the most important aspect of this counter. You don’t need to be fast, you just need to be calm, a little quick and have the right timing to know when to shoot your counter. 

Atlas finished off the video by talking about how being calm will allow you to read your opponent so you can get your timing. If you're trying to time a cross counter, take time to look at how your opponent throws their jab. If they jab short with a bend in their elbow,then you can move a little closer to land your shot. Take note of your opponent's jab and movements so that you can find your timing and land the perfect cross counter. 

The Fundamentals of Boxing by Teddy Atlas
If you like this video from Teddy Atlas and want to learn more from the legend himself, you can check out his complete video series “The Fundamentals of Boxing By Teddy Atlas” available exclusively on Dynamic Striking.