I was made aware of this video via twitter (thanks Greg!) and thought it may be of interest. It’s a good discussion on telegraphing punches with some nice demonstrations.
I also thought this could lead to discussion on telegraphing generally? Some of my initial thoughts:
It is very important not to telegraph a punch when in a duel / consensual fight as we have a reaction gap and hence such a punch can be thwarted. It’s also important not to telegraph when pre-empting in self-protection; although deception and dialogue can be used hide preparation to strike i.e. dropping the hand to the side to set up the slap while asking the action trigger question. Such a hand motion is entirely in-keeping with the body language associated with asking a question and hence will not be see as a potentially combative motion.
However, I think that the notion of telegraphing is sometimes overemphasised in the chaos of close-range conflict where the range and pace make it highly unlikely a person will see and have time to effectively react to any punch. It can therefore be advantageous to “open” technique up a little to ensure greater impact i.e. give a hook a wider arc. However, we sometimes see concern about telegraphing overriding power generation in an environment where power is far more important than telegraphing (it’s that context thing again).
It’s very unlikely the technique will be spotted and thwarted anyway due to the close range and the fact they have rapid punches (several a second) coming in and hence have a lot to deal with.
From a fighting / duelling perspective, mirror work can be a great way to test if you are adding in unnecessary motion. As can using a partner to say “now” when they think you are about to punch; which can be good fighting and also useful for refining the technique in pre-emption practise. I’m sure you will have plenty of other telegraphing training methods to share which will be of value to all.
Anyhow, I hope you enjoy the clip.
All the best,