Sugar Ray Leonard – The Head Feint


sugar ray leonard

Sugar Ray Leonard was a special fighter, if I was to compile a top ten list of the greatest boxers of all time, Leonard would be the only fighter in the list with less than 50 fights(Leonard had 40), the reason being I cannot think of anyone who beat a better quartet fighters at their best than Leonard did.

Leonard beat Roberto Duran, Thomas Hearns, Wilfred Benitez and Marvin Hagler all at a time they were considered amongst the top 3 or even the best pound for pound boxers in the world.

One of the tricks Leonard was exceptionally good at was the head feint. There are a few reasons why Leonard would use the head feint. Firstly it made him unpredictable, by using head feints which are quite similar to the movement of slipping punches, opponents wouldn’t know when a punch was coming. By doing this it also prevented the opponent from setting their feet as they wouldn’t know if Leonard was feinting to set them up for a punch – often instead of punching, Leonard would simply use some lateral movement and step away out of range, the next time he might fire a quick jab or combination after the head feint.

Now this is something I like to drill in my classes – the head, hand and foot. You move the head by using a feint, you move the hands by throwing a punch and then you move the feet to step out of range from any potential counter punch.

Feints are something I have done a lot of work on previously whether that is articles on my blog or videos on my YouTube channel Fayz Fitness. Feints open up a whole new can of worms for your opponent and the possibilities off the feint are endless. Sugar Ray Leonard would use the head feint to set up the in jab or the screw jab, he would use it to keep you off balance and constantly guessing his next move or he might use it to tempt you into throwing a punch at him which he had already set you up for, thereby falling into his trap. Watch the video below to see Leonard at work with the head feint.

About the author 


Boxing Coach
Strength and Conditioning Coach
Boxing Author of:

The Boxing Cheat Sheet - Your Ultimate Guide to Ring Survival

Strength and Conditioning for Boxing - Work out Hits to get you Fighting Fit!

Forgotten Legends of the Ring - Ten Past Masters of the Squared Circle

*Any videos or images used on this site to support my articles that are copyrighted are used for educational purposes and in accordance to the fair use act and are not my own - all credit is due to the respective owners. No copyright infringement intended.


feinting, head feint, sugar ray leonard

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