Philly Shell or Shoulder Roll

Philly Shell or Shoulder Roll

This is actually a variation of the cross-arm defense. The lead arm (left for an orthodox fighter and right for a southpaw) is placed across the torso usually somewhere in between the belly button and chest and the lead hand rests on the opposite side of the fighter’s torso. The back hand is placed on the side of the face (right side for orthodox fighters and left side for southpaws). The lead shoulder is brought in tight against the side of the face (left side for orthodox fighters and right side for southpaws). This style is used by fighters who like to counterpunch. To execute this guard a fighter must be very athletic and experienced. This style is so effective for counterpunching because it allows fighters to slip punches by rotating and dipping their upper body and causing blows to glance off the fighter. After the punch glances off, the fighter’s back hand is in perfect position to hit their out‐of‐position opponent. The shoulder lean is used in this stance. To execute the shoulder lean a fighter rotates and ducks (to the right for orthodox fighters and to the left for southpaws) when their opponents punch is coming towards them and then rotates back towards their opponent while their opponent is bringing their hand back. The fighter will throw a punch with their back hand as they are rotating towards their undefended opponent. The weakness to this style is that when a fighter is stationary and not rotating they are open to be hit so a fighter must be athletic and well conditioned to effectively execute this style. To beat this style, fighters like to jab their opponents shoulder causing the shoulder and arm to be in pain and to demobilize that arm. Fighters that used this defense include Floyd Mayweather Jr., Ken Norton, Sugar Ray Robinson, James Toney, Pernell Whitaker.

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