Overhand Right

by Alexander "The Great" Enriquez • January 04, 2023

Imagine getting hit by a 96 horsepower Ford Escort at top speed. That’s what it is like to be hit by Francis Ngannou’s overhand right. 

No, I haven’t been hit by him, but Alistair Overeem has and he can tell you it ain’t no Toyota corolla.

Francis isn’t a boxer, but punching power like this must be appreciated, and also he must be doing something right. 

Keeping our minds open to being creative in the art of boxing.

Real recognize real you feel!

Other great fighters that throw the overhand right are in the boxing world are Marcos Maidana and Lucas Matthysee.

Before we get started keep in mind this is from the Orthodox point of view.

Why Is It The Most Powerful Punch?

The overhand is long-distance, it’s fast, and you don’t see it coming if you set it up the right way.

Long Distance

There are two parts to this, keep your distance, and completely rotate to help, fully extend that arm. 

Too close will shorten the overhand right, too far and you over-extend. 

The perfect distance is about one arm’s length away, or if you can touch them with a long jab.


Overhands aren’t completely straight punches so they arent as fast as the straight right. Where they lack in speed they make up in power.

It’s the second fastest punch when done with the correct form. The elbow is slightly flared to come over the guard. The angle goes up and over ending in a downward fashion. 

The first two knuckles will always make a punch more effective.


Gennady Golovkin is gold to watch for film study. 

Back to talking distance, GGG keeps you at the end of his jab setting you up for that overhand right.

This does two things, it gages his distance and puts a hand in your face so you don’t see the next punch coming.

Power is calculated by distance and velocity, the longer your punch has to travel the more momentum it picks up.

Hiding the overhand behind the jab is important, the punch you don’t see coming you cant prepare for. This causes a shock to the system and results in a knockout or a knockdown more often than not.

What Is The Overhand Right?

Overhand right isn’t a straight punch and it isn’t a hook. It is a hybrid between both worlds. You want to see a little elbow action without completely looping the punch like you are stirring a pot.

Bring your head over your lead knee, this helps with torque and angle of the punch. Bringing your head over your knee gets your head off the line.

And remember...

You generate power by completely rotating your hips as you punch to bring your body weight with the punch.

Fully extend as you rotate, if you find your elbow lining up laterally with your shoulder you cut your power in half. 

How To Do The Overhand?

Let’s imagine you are in front of a bag. This bag just made a momma joke at you and you want to teach it a lesson. 

What do you do? A. make a momma joke back B. Shadowbox intensely C. overhand right the bag

You choose C good choice.

So you are in front of the bag but don’t know exactly how to throw it.


This is a step-by-step breakdown just to get the mechanics down.

Start in your boxing stance. With your lead foot, you will take a slight 45° step forward opening your stance wide.

The back foot will stay behind and with the toes in the ground.

Now that you have your feet in position, your head will come over your lead knee by rotating your back hip and foot forward.

Wondering where the punch comes in right? It’s coming!

Ok so start back in the stance and practice that motion, first, step, bring the head over the knee, and rotate.

Once you get fluid with that motion you will start to add the overhand, if you have ever stirred a pot of soup for your grandma this is a mirrored motion.

The adjustment we will make with that motion, is we want a small pot, not a big pot, so tighten up that circular motion you are making.

Add these three ingredients, I mean steps, and you have the overhand right.


You know the mechanics but these next steps help you bring it to life.

Set up the overhand behind the jab, fully extended jab keep them at the end of your fist.


Starting with that jab helps with what? That’s right gaging distance. 

Important to note that a shortened overhand loses power. Without enough distance, it can’t pick up velocity.


If you are having trouble getting off your punch after setting it up behind the jab no worries, we are champs we make adjustments.

Your opponent has good defense and you have to open them up, hit them with some combination punching.

Push the fight forward, creating forward momentum adds power to your punch.


If you aren’t moving forward or just holding your ground as your opponent decides to come in, time their punch. 

You will have to be very explosive and have cat-like reflexes, if you are off slightly you may get caught.

Dos & Don'ts

A couple of keys to think about.


Fully extend, you want as much force and power you can get.

Give yourself enough distance, a short punch loses power.

Bring your head over your knee, this will help you keep your balance and you have gives you a guide of where you should be positioned.

Do not...

Shorten your distance, another problem besides losing power, you can jam up your shoulder and cause damage.

Don't stir a big pot, stir a small pot. A bigger pot means a bigger loop also known as loading up. Keep it tight.

Bring your head past your knee. Head over the knees maintains balance and keeps you from lunging forward. We want to fully extend but not over-extend!


Boxing isn’t always about who is tougher, bigger, faster, stronger. 

Those all help within the fight, yes. But sometimes it is all about execution.

Doing things right. Whenever you feel confused or stuck, snap out of it by going back to the basics.

This tool isn’t too advanced but can be used at the wrong time, use it like a trick you pull out of the bag every so often. 

Element of surprise will make it that much better! 

Alexander "The Great" Enriquez

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