Middleweight monster Gennady Golovkin has never been buzzed, let alone knocked down in the ring. Some of this can be credited to his subtle defensive abilities and good punch resistance which he improves by doing a series of neck strengthening exercises.
It’s likely that ‘GGG’ started strengthening his neck from a young age and all throughout his Olympic career and now the professional ranks.
In this video by EsNews, Golovkin performs simple exercises that’s performed in high repititions to improve neck strength and endurance, and something you should also incorporate into your training routine.
There are three neck strengthening exercises you’ll see Golovkin perform in the video:
- Using the ring rope to create resistance – Golovkin places a folded towel above the ring rope and proceeds to push his head up and down into the rope. He then puts the towel under the rope and continues a similar motion with his neck.
- No handed frog neck lifts – this looks the toughest of them all as you need to use only your neck and feet to balance your body while thrusting your hips into the air.
- Neck lifts using a weighted head harness – this is the most common neck exercise you’ll see fighters perform. You’ve probably seen Floyd Mayweather Jr, Mike Tyson or Anthony Joshua use one of these but with varying weights.
It’s interesting to note that Gennady Golovkin doesn’t use heavy weights to strengthen his neck, but he prefers to perform high reps with bodyweight resistance or low weights. Perhaps he finds that heavy weights causes his neck to stiffen up easier due to the increase in muscle mass.
Will Doing Neck Strengthening Exercises Improve Punch Resistance?
While your defensive abilities can be refined, unfortunately there’s not much you can do to improve your chin. But that’s not to say there’s absolutely nothing you can do, because strengthening the neck muscles can create some sort of resistance when getting punched.
When you get hit square on the chin with enough force, your entire neck rotates at an accelerated pace and your brain bounces around your skull. This leads to a concussion.
Having a strong neck can help to absorb impact from a hard punch so your neck doesn’t rotate as fast, therefore minimizing the effect. In the event you were to get knocked down, your neck wouldn’t bobble around as much because the extra muscle can help to stabilize it.
You have to bear in mind that regardless of what type and how much physical training you do, a precise and well timed blow can knock anyone out. That should be enough incentive for you to work on your defensive abilities more than anything else.
To get the most out of your training, I highly recommend the following articles:
► How to Increase Punching Power
► 10 Tips to Improve Boxing Footwork
► Boxing Basics
► Top 10 Best Heavy Punching Bags
► Top 10 Best Boxing Gloves