by Don Heatrick
@donheatrick

If you can throw a good shoulder butt, you can throw an awesome punch or elbow!

This drill coordinates explosive power from the ground up, and really tells you if your timing is good enough.

In this video I share with you a foundation drill that I use to teach fighters to connect the true source of striking power, the hips, through an explosively coordinated core, to the shoulder…

Which is the jump-off point for any KO punch or elbow strike.


If you can’t make your shoulder slap the bag (without winding the shoulder back first), then practice!

This drill is akin to Bruce Lee’s famous 1-Inch Punch.

Taking the shoulder butt drill beyond a strike-coordination drill… it can also be used to train explosive speed.

So let’s talk sets and reps…

I’d recommend using 3 sets of 5 to 10 reps each side – that’s from both orthodox and southpaw stances.

As with all speed training exercises, the objective is to move as explosively as possible. If you begin to slow over the 10 reps in each set, drop the number of reps.

You should finish the last rep in each set as quickly as you began in the first rep.

This isn’t a speed-endurance drill, it builds speed – and that means no fatigue.

And this also means taking at least 2 mins (ideally 3) before repeating a set on from the same stance. Don’t rush… think maximum-speed, individual reps, not machine-gunning a string of reps.

For this drill, it’s important to move from a cold start without elastically rebounding from one rep to the next.

Transfer of Training…

To get the most “carry over” to your striking technique, after your exercise sets I’d recommend throwing some jabs, crosses, hooks and elbows (either on a punch bag, pads, or even shadow boxing) to feel the transfer to your Muay Thai technique.

And if you’ve missed it, I recommend you check out my Devastating Elbows video to add another level to your training – the link is with this video.

And if you liked this video, please hit like button below, share with your friends and be sure to subscribe.

And I would love to hear your feedback. So leave me some comments below and let me know what you thought of this drill and if you are going to use it.

Thank you, and I’ll catch you next time.

Don Heatrick

Founder of Heatrick Strength and Conditioning

Don Heatrick is a family man from the UK, former mechanical design engineer, European Muay Thai silver medallist, former pro Thai boxer (ranked 4th in UK while aged 40-years), a Muay Thai coach, podcast host, and the go-to expert on Muay Thai performance training with over 25 years of coaching experience.

Don helps ambitious fighters and coaches take their game to the next level by bridging the gap between Strength & Conditioning, Performance Science, and Muay Thai.

Follow Don Heatrick on Instagram:

@donheatrick

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