6 Tips to improving your infighting skills
6 Tips for improving your infighting skills | Bobby Mayne

To dominate your opponent effectively from the inside position is better known as ‘infighting’. This will not influence the judges’ scoring a round. This demonstrates the boxer’s ability of fighting at long range for a taller rangy style boxer, and medium to close range for a shorter boxer.

Infighting is effective when boxers are of similar height and shorter height. To take the inside position a boxer must either:

  • Set up an attack to close the distance with opponent using similar combinations such as jab, cross and hook to head or body to gain the inside position.
  • Make opponent punch using tactics such as the feint to draw the opponent to attack then slip opponent’s punch and target their midsection with short Hooks and Uppercuts, switching their attack to the head.

When distance between yourself and opponent has been decreased to approximately elbow distance apart from each other, tighten guard for protection and have the advantage when punching, as your arms and gloves are between opponent’s arms:

  1. Move rear foot near parallel position to lead foot, still shoulder width apart with knees slightly bent. Body and feet should be in a slightly ‘square on’ position.
  2. Elbows tucked in rib area and gloves resting on cheekbones. Eyes fixed on opponents’ eyes and using peripheral vision to shoulder and hip movements, that may give away a punching movement and defend by blocking punches to the head with gloves and body punches with arms, and be able to slip and duck punches from this stance.
  3. Arms and gloves should be between opponent’s gloves offering more self-protection. Gloves closer to opponent’s body and head making yourself a smaller target. This gives an advantage of using forearms to push and spread opponent’s arms apart, to offer more target area to score on, and use forearm to trap opponent’s arms making it difficult for opponent to punch effectively.
  4. Engage hips and lower body by slightly bending at knees when punching hooks and uppercuts. This ensures power to hooks and uppercuts by ensuring body leverage is used when transferring bodyweight from one foot to the other.
  5. When opponent crowds you so you’re unable to punch, use shoulder nudge or step to side to create room between yourself and effect opponents balance.
  6. Remember movement is important, is vital for boxing especially infighting.

(i) Standing in front of opponent with feet stationary, use upper body defensive moves such as slip, duck, and lean to avoid punches and arm blocks, then immediately counter punch to finish the exchange.

(ii) Trap opponent’s arms with forearm or loop arms around opponent’s arms (near elbows) and pull toward effecting their balance and ability to punch, especially if you are fatigued or hurt.

(iii) Do not step back when not punching as you are still in the ‘line of fire’, step off to the side to create new angles to attack.

Bobby Mayne
Bobby Mayne is the Head Coach at Boxrite Boxing Club and author of several boxing coaching books including the bestselling "The Art of Boxing: Your Guide to the Sweet Science". Mayne has been involved in boxing since 1981. He has trained professional boxers such as Australian Daniel Dawson to compete at the world level, becoming a world contender and ultimately the WBF World Superwelterweight Champion. He also assisted in the training of top boxers from the Philippines including Rey Megrino and Rey Loreto, who were both successful in winning their respective WBC Regional and WBO World Flyweight titles.