Championship Fighting: Explosive Punching and Aggressive Defense

Why I Wrote This Book

Dempsey Jack
Глава 4. Why I Wrote This Book
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Naturally, I didn't make the detailed exploration of my fighting past all at one sitting. I'm a restless guy; I don't like to sit long in one place. But I became so interested in the work that sometimes I'd spend an hour or two hours at it. I did it on trains, in planes, in hotel rooms, and at

Why I Wrote This Book

Naturally, I didn't make the detailed exploration of my fighting past all at one sitting. I'm a restless guy; I don't like to sit long in one place. But I became so interested in the work that sometimes I'd spend an hour or two hours at it. I did it on trains, in planes, in hotel rooms, and at home.

Max Waxman, my business manager, used to say, "For cryin' out loud, Jack, what are you writin' down all that junk for? You're supposed to be a memory expert. You must have all that dope about fightin' right in your own head. Seems silly to see you sweatin' and fumin' and writin' notes about stuff you got at your fingertips."

Well, the log of my mental journey from Manassa to Toledo filled 384 pages with closely written notes in longhand. I'm confident those 384 pages represented the most thorough study ever made by any prominent fighter of his own technique and of the pointers he had received firsthand from others.

But my job had only begun. I spent several months studying that mass of information and separating it into the different departments of self-defense-under sections, subsections, sub-sub-sections, etc., I waded through it again and again. I combed it; I seined it; I sluice-boxed it for details I needed in each smallest sub-sub-section. And then, into each slot I dropped any additional knowledge I had gained since Toledo. Those different departments, with their various minor brackets, gave me for the first time a clear panorama of self-defense.

I was pretty proud of my panorama. I was confident at last that I could take the rawest beginner, or even an experienced fighter, and teach him exactly what self-defense was all about.

Then I became curious to compare my panorama with those of other men in boxing. I talked to many fighters, trainers and instructors; and I read every book on boxing I could buy.

My conversations and my reading left me utterly amazed at the hazy, incomplete and distorted conceptions of self-defense possessed by many who are supposed to be experts.

Perhaps I was unjustly critical. Perhaps none of them had had my unusual opportunities to get a blueprint that mapped all the fundamentals, at least. Or perhaps they took many fundamentals for granted and did not include them in their explanations.


1. Beginners are not grounded in the four principal methods of putting the body-weight into fast motion: (a) FALLING STEP, (b) LEG SPRING, (c) SHOULDER WHIRL, (d) UPWARD SURGE.

2. The extremely important POWER LINE in punching seems to have been forgotten.

3. The wholesale failure of instructors and trainers to appreciate the close cooperation necessary between the POWER LINE and WEIGHT-MOTION results generally in impure punching-weak hitting.

4. Explosive straight punching has become almost a lost art because instructors place so much emphasis on shoulder whirl that beginners are taught wrongfully to punch straight 'without stepping whenever possible.

5. Failure to teach the FALLING STEP ("trigger step") for straight punching has resulted in the LEFT JAB being used generally as a light, auxiliary weapon for making openings and "setting up," instead of as a stunning blow.

6. Beginners are not shown the difference between SHOVEL HOOKS and UPPERCUTS.

7. Beginners are not warned that taking LONG STEPS with hooks may open up those hooks into SWINGS.

8. The BOB-WEAVE rarely is explained properly.

9. Necessity for the THREE-KNUCKLE LANDING is never pointed out.

10. It is my personal belief that BEGINNERS SHOULD BE TAUGHT ALL TYPES OF PUNCHES BEFORE BEING INSTRUCTED IN DEFENSIVE MOVES, for nearly every defensive move should be accompanied by a simultaneous or a delayed counterpunch. You must know how to punch and you must have punching confidence before you can learn aggressive defense.

My dissatisfaction with current methods of teaching self-defense was the principal reason why I decided to put my panorama into a book.

I realized, too, that my explosive performances and big gates in the "Golden Decade" were indirectly responsible for current unsatisfactory methods; so, it was my duty to lend a helping hand.

Moreover, it's my impression now that thousands of boys and men throughout the world would grasp eagerly at the chance to learn how to use their fists-how to become knockout punchers in a hurry.

Never before has there been such need for self-defense among fellows everywhere as there is today. Populations increased so rapidly during the past quarter-century, while improved methods in transportation shrank the globe, that there is much crowding now. Also the pace of living has been so stepped-up that there is much more tension in nearly every activity than there was in the old days.

Crowding, pace, and tension cause friction, flare-ups, angry words and blows. That unprecedented friction can be noted particularly in cities, where tempers are shortened by traffic jams, sidewalk bumpings, crowdings in subways and on buses, and jostlings in theaters, saloons and nightclubs.


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