The Role of Rhythm in Fighting
If you ever hold focus mitts for your partner, you’ve experienced how much of a different rhythm makes in punching and kicking.
When I’m holding mitts for my guys, it often takes a few hits for me to get a sense of their speed.
Part of this is how fast they strike and how much extra movement they take before they strike.
But even more, it has to do with the time they take between strikes.
Some people string hits together really fast, other people string strikes together slower.
And if I immediately call for a long combo, my student probably isn’t going to make a good connection on the mitts for some of the shots because I don’t have a feel for his timing yet so I’m not ready to match it with how fast to move the mitts around.
In fighting, you can use rhythm to your advantage by changing it constantly.
This will mess with your opponent’s ability to time both his offense and his defense.
I find it hard to slow down or speed up my punches and kicks as a conscious thing when I’m in the middle of sparring.
So what I do is focus on blending shots that are naturally quicker and shots that are naturally slower into my combos so I’m constantly changing the rhythm on my opponent while still firing all of my hits at full speed.