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Reverse Stances - Right handed southpaws and left handed orthodox fighters


Unnaturals. Reverse-stanced. With the power hand leading into the fight. Today we’re gonna talk about right-handed southpaws and left-handed orthodox fighters.
But first, what do those stances resemble, from a simple perspective?

The orthodox stance is a fighting stance where a usually right-handed fighter stands with his left side forward and his right side to the rear. This stance favours an already loaded-up strike from the dominant or power side of the fighter.
Orthodox Stance
The southpaw stance is a fighting stance where usually a left-handed fighter stands with his right side forward and his left side to the rear with the same purpose of the orthodox. To load powershots with the power side.
The orthodox stance has the advantage of being a better swarmer stance. A swarmer is a fighter who attempts to finish his opponents by overwhelming them with bursts of powerful volume strikes chained. The orthodox stance is also easier to train, therefore most trainers being really familiar with it, since the majority of the people are right handed.  Most typical boxers were orthodox fighters and those things created the cult around the orthodox stance boxing as the “proper way to box”.
Also the orthodox stance favours a better defensive for striking beginners, since the liver is placed on the right side of the body which is further from the opponent and on the same side with the power hand.
On the other hand (literally), the southpaw stance has the advantage of being a better stance for a tactical striker or a single-blow based striker (power strikers). The downside to it is that the fighter has his liver facing towards the opponent, requiring a way better defense to the body.

Back in the days, some trainers refused to train southpaws. Even some used to say that “southpaws are boxing with their heads in the way”, due to the fact that in a southpaw-orthodox situation, there is a lead-hand fight and a lead-foot alignment to have in order to land the power hand without being alligned to the opponent’s power hand.

Another downside of the southpaw stance is that not any striking coach trains proper southpaw striking. Most try to simply switch the orthodox and teach it. The upside is that, in the amateur field and possibly in the professional field as well, the sparring experience of orthodoxes fighting southpaws is inferior to the southpaws fighting orthodox fighters, since the southpaw stance is not naturally as common.

Amongst well-known fighters who are right handed and orthodox we can count Mike Tyson (boxer), Muhammad Ali or Cassius Clay (boxer), George Saint-Pierre (MMA fighter) and many other succesful fighters.
Amongst well-known fighters who are left handed and southpaws we can count Conor McGregor (MMA fighter), Vitor Belfort (MMA fighter), Coban (Thaiboxer) and fewer fighters, due to the fact that training a southpaw to a professional level is a more rare fact, at least until nowadays.
On realistic terms, there is no scientific proof that any stance has any advantage by nature.
But what about the “unnaturals”?
Southpaw Stance
Some claim that they have their dominant eye on the other side as their dominant hand. For example a right-handed man that has a dominant left eye. Or the other way around.
Another claim is that some fighters took a turn in style in becoming counter strikers (especially right-handed southpaws) since the rear hand has some power of its own and the lead hand also backs a heavy punch when backpedalling, having Anderson Silva’s story as the example. He started as a not-very-succesful mma fighter who tried to swarm as an orthodox striker with little to no success in these situations in comparison to his later change of style into a right handed southpaw who countered in a savage fashion any opponent, just as he did with Chris Leben in his UFC debut or in the more popular case, his crazy headmovement followed by a backpedaling KO-jab against Forest Griffin.
Another example of touch right-handed southpaw KO jabs was Nick Diaz’s win over Robbie Lawler, back in the days. One stiff jab eggplanted Lawler stiff.
Amongst other succesful right-handed southpaws we have the Diaz brothers, Jerome Le Banner (K-1), Giorgio Petrosyan (one of the best strikers in kickboxing on the planet) and Robbie Lawler.
In MMA, leading with the dominant hand may have an advantage in the wrestling/grappling game.

Amongst succesful boxers who are southpaws, but righthanded  we have Vasyl Lomachenko and Manny Pacquiao.
On the other hand, the left handed orthodox fighters like Jimi Manuwa and Andre Ward benefit from a very strong jab and lead left hook in comparison to the typical orthodox fighters.
The subject of reversed stances is a subject that we will soon bring to the table into depth, regarding the MMA striking bases. But that is another story.

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