Mittology – A Review

by Coach Al

I’ve borrowed some of Roger Mayweather’s mittwork for the live, conventional mittwork that I do. But by no means can I ever condone it solely to be proper mittwork. A New Jersey based trainer, Coach Rick, or his corny pseudonym, “The Mittologist,” sells this stuff on youtube and even has some $199 con for becoming certified in Mittology. Floyd Mayweather wannabes across the globe are following suit.

Say goodbye to the old-time art of live mittwork.

Mittwork nowadays across the US consists of guys throwing fast combinations of quarter punches with their hands held really low and little hip being used. The Mittologist is not the only one selling this. Coaches get into the set patterns and find that it’s the easiest way to take people’s money (I’ve heard that from a few coaches themselves). Because this Mittology, above all benefits (if any), is fun for most people – especially beginners. Perhaps it wasn’t meant to be just a money maker and flashy, but after the set patterns are learned, this stuff is disgustingly easy – especially for the coaches.

First of all, the coaches don’t have to go through the grueling hard work of coaching distance, angles, and strategy when doing this Mittology stuff. There is no randomness, bumps, clinches, spins, getting hit, punching at the same time as blocking, and there are no options (you must move in the set patterns). Second, it is still exciting and fun, yet it has the incomparable variable of being safe. It’s like the TaeBo of mittwork – the people, even actual boxers, think they’re really getting authentic boxing mittwork, but they’re getting more of a workout as opposed to real moves and real education.

After having one vapid boxer of mine – one who came to me already brainwashed by Floyd Mayweather Jr. – actually purchase the Mittologist’s videos, I watched a few of them with an open mind (just on November 19, 2012). No doubt, I think the Mittologist guy probably knows better and is just making a business move on the sport, making videos that are virtual knockoffs of Roger Mayweather’s set patterns. This whoring is what I have a problem with. I can’t say that technical and detailed work isn’t done with fighters away from his mitts, but I am saying that this mittwork is brainwashing viewers into thinking that it’s “the secret to better boxing and coaching.” I’ve heard no mention that sparring and alternative work is essential. Not once did I hear mention that conventional mittwork is good to work into his routines. And it really gets on my nerves that there is a stupid certification that seems like anyone can buy. What governing body gave him the right to certify anyone? Can any coach make up some stupid gimmick and certify it? I have a number system that I created for communicating angles and head locations and punches; should I certify people who pay me? Where is the profession and years of understanding boxing inside and out that goes into the coaching? He calls it technical mittwork, but it is almost absolute in being the opposite of that. This is my issue with many youtube coaches. There are probably only 3 known ones that I can cosign. There are innumerable hacks on youtube, but at least some, even the non-boxers, don’t make up catchy names and rename boxing moves like this guy.  My point is that much of the sale of these videos gambles on people’s perceptions and their false correlations: they think Floyd Mayweather Jr. was successful doing this stuff, so they think this stuff must work the best. It is the classic idiot’s trap. It’s akin to an ad hominem argument – an argument made against an opponent, as opposed to an argument against the opponent’s argument. If I said Roger Mayweather sucks on the mitts, someone might retort that I don’t have the best fighter in the world, so I must be wrong. Such illogic are important factors to understand when deciding for or against this type of stuff. Many coaches I speak to agree with me, yet some of them are doing this mittwork because white-collar recreational boxers buy into this stuff.

The Mittologist claims that this mittwork instills fluidity and reaction. I contend that live mittwork does that and more. Live mittwork, on the other hand, doesn’t have the shortcomings of fake blocks and shoulder touches and quarter punches. When I do mittwork, I really punch at the fighters, and I really review the techniques and strategies. I have mittwork for opposite stances and for same stances. I mimic different fighting styles and throw punches in different ways. I often wear a body-shield so fighters can go to my body at will. I catch punches with the mitts on my head, too. My mittwork is comprehensive, not just aerobic. Fighters get to feel almost like they’re in a fight. I treat every boxer differently, and I feed the mitts differently to each of them. They, in turn, learn fluidity and reaction without the hoax. How is Mittology any better than this convention? How is Mittology any good, period? Is it like Karate’s Katas versus sparring. Do boxers even shadowbox the way they do this mittwork? Do they fight that way, too? The answer is an expletive and “no.”

I am knocking this stuff because I think its widespread appeal is based on gimmick and exploiting the ignorance of people who don’t know boxing. Perhaps the guys who do this know more than what the rote mittwork exhibits, but I am only going off on the mittwork itself. Check out the mittwork on the internet. The boxers often don’t protect their heads, they don’t turn their hips, and they don’t turn over their punches. They don’t even really roll or block punches. They aren’t even actually punching too much of the time. This doesn’t make all these mittwork routines necessarily wrong, but the fake stuff is a major part of the selling of this crap. The appeal is that it’s fast and non-stop; it looks cool to people who don’t know how easy it is. Manny Masson does a similar routine with Yuriorkis Gamboa, but the techniques are almost fully completed, thus the punches and movements are more realistic; this is much more difficult, although Masson also just touches Gamboa’s shoulders. And I question how random any of their stuff is, as well. When you watch live mittwork, you will see mistakes every round (e.g. missed counters, late moves, hesitations, and people getting touched with punches). Live mittwork is not based on set patterns and solely verbal queues. It’s live, physical, and cerebral, and you benefit from getting as close to sparring as you can while practicing detailed strategy and technique. Even the set patterns have their randomness as it’s mixed in with all the other work. Mittology seems to be just another workout drill, like bad double-end work in which guys don’t really throw complete punches and don’t move realistically.

When I argued with my ignorant boxer on how stupid I thought the patty-cake Mittology mittwork is, the young boxer even said to me, “If this mittwork is so bad, why is the Mittologist’s wife a golden gloves champ?” I told him to look up Logical Fallacies and then, only then, work on an informed opinion.

No matter what, I will never give him a behind the back mitt feed. I’d rather lose him to the grift.

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10 responses to “Mittology – A Review

  1. Hey guys. I have just came across this form online by accident but I am interested in listening to people’s opinions and it’s great to see how passionate you all are about boxing. I am sure you are all doing fantastic work as coaches . I am a boxing coach from Ireland and i am a coach and condition trainer for the Hatton Academy UK.
    I am sure you are all familiar with Ricky the Hitman Hatton. 5 time World champion in the light welter and wether weight division.
    This is the Rickies training company I tutor and coach for. We deliver boxing training courses all over the UK for coaches or fitness people looking for a qualification as a Boxing trainer. We also run Boxing workshops with Ricky in various areas also.
    That’s just some brief info on the company and what we do.
    Everyone is fully entitled to their own personal opinion and it should be fully respected.
    I am just going to give my own opinion here on my thoughts of the above comments .
    Firstly I have great time for the mittology training as I think it’s something different in terms of the benefits it has to a boxer or any joe soap.
    I use this type of MIT work training with boxers myself but I integrate it into their current training regimes along with sparring, traditional style pad work, toe to toe boxing training techniques with the body belt etc.
    Every coach and every boxer has their own unique styles of performing and coaching.
    At the end of the day the best way to learn technical type of boxing is in the ring sparring learning from your mistakes and your good points.
    This system of mitt work does work when integrated into the training regime of a boxer along with all the other aspects of training. I do agree that a lot of the drills are not realistic as in less hip turns Etc but it is a great system to use along with traditional style free style pad work.
    I use this system a lot but with my own style and sometimes with a body belt.
    I am an assist coach in the Ricky Hatton gym and Ricky uses this type of mitt work all the time with he’s fighters because after training with floyd mayweather senior he saw benefits from it and how it makes he’s fighters react better and counter quicker.
    Like all sports boxing has evolved and I personally think if u can integrate this system into your coaching program that you will see results in reactions and sharpness. But by using it and creating your own style with it just like I have done in the gym with Ricky’s fighters and like Ricky has done with he’s fighters.
    The idea is not to have everyone box like floyd mayweather. Every boxer is different and none of the same style so you have to adapt and use different methods to adapt to a specific boxer and their style.

    In a nut shell. I don’t think it’s a con and I certainly don’t think that this style of mitt work is a hoax. I have seen fighters change dramatically and developed better defensively as a fighter from integrating this system .

    As I always say whatever works for you as a coach or a trainer than stick with it. Don’t worry about what the other coach is doing . Focus on what you do as a coach and do it to the best of your ability. We are all learning in this sport and you will never stop learning.

    Thanks for taking the time to read my comment and keep up the great work you are all doing whatever your opinions are. You are all still doing something very positive :)

  2. This is a con and if you buy into you deserve to be taken for a ride. Have you ever seen coach rick in the corner of a pro fight? Even as a second?? $200.00 bucks for a piece of paper thru the internet come on people use your heads this guys a joke!

    • Hey guys. I have just came across this form online by accident but I am interested in listening to people’s opinions and it’s great to see how passionate you all are about boxing. I am sure you are all doing fantastic work as coaches . I am a boxing coach from Ireland and i am a coach and condition trainer for the Hatton Academy UK.
      I am sure you are all familiar with Ricky the Hitman Hatton. 5 time World champion in the light welter and wether weight division.
      This is the Rickies training company I tutor and coach for. We deliver boxing training courses all over the UK for coaches or fitness people looking for a qualification as a Boxing trainer. We also run Boxing workshops with Ricky in various areas also.
      That’s just some brief info on the company and what we do.
      Everyone is fully entitled to their own personal opinion and it should be fully respected.
      I am just going to give my own opinion here on my thoughts of the above comments .
      Firstly I have great time for the mittology training as I think it’s something different in terms of the benefits it has to a boxer or any joe soap.
      I use this type of MIT work training with boxers myself but I integrate it into their current training regimes along with sparring, traditional style pad work, toe to toe boxing training techniques with the body belt etc.
      Every coach and every boxer has their own unique styles of performing and coaching.
      At the end of the day the best way to learn technical type of boxing is in the ring sparring learning from your mistakes and your good points.
      This system of mitt work does work when integrated into the training regime of a boxer along with all the other aspects of training. I do agree that a lot of the drills are not realistic as in less hip turns Etc but it is a great system to use along with traditional style free style pad work.
      I use this system a lot but with my own style and sometimes with a body belt.
      I am an assist coach in the Ricky Hatton gym and Ricky uses this type of mitt work all the time with he’s fighters because after training with floyd mayweather senior he saw benefits from it and how it makes he’s fighters react better and counter quicker.
      Like all sports boxing has evolved and I personally think if u can integrate this system into your coaching program that you will see results in reactions and sharpness. But by using it and creating your own style with it just like I have done in the gym with Ricky’s fighters and like Ricky has done with he’s fighters.
      The idea is not to have everyone box like floyd mayweather. Every boxer is different and none of the same style so you have to adapt and use different methods to adapt to a specific boxer and their style.

      In a nut shell. I don’t think it’s a con and I certainly don’t think that this style of mitt work is a hoax. I have seen fighters change dramatically and developed better defensively as a fighter from integrating this system .

      As I always say whatever works for you as a coach or a trainer than stick with it. Don’t worry about what the other coach is doing . Focus on what you do as a coach and do it to the best of your ability. We are all learning in this sport and you will never stop learning.

      Thanks for taking the time to read my comment and keep up the great work you are all doing whatever your opinions are. You are all still doing something very positive :)

  3. I agree with part of your blog post and disagree with some as well. As Mayweather has proved, his style is superior to many hall of famers – however, the mistake people make is relying on that mittwork SOLELY. Even Floyd doesn’t ONLY do that type of mitt work.

    I bought those DVDs (low ass quality!!) and I do work with my students using that routine (sometimes).
    I have changed somethings that I didn’t like about it… for example, you put that arm down and I crack you across the skull. It’s hands up, 100% of the time. The second thing I changed is that I make my students thrown real punches, not half or 1/4 or 3/4 punches. Real punches, turning feet, shoulders, good form or push-ups and burpees are your punishment.

    Other mittwork must dominate, mayweather mittwork is used as a drill, like all drills – they serve a purpose. the purpose is defense, not offense. To react to punches being thrown.

    I had a fighter that, in his first fight, got under so many left hooks, it was truly impressive – all from the mittwork drills. Most first fights look horrible, my guy looked “ok”, but he definitely was rolling under those hooks.

    Anything by itself doesn’t work… when used in conjunction with other drills, it can be helpful. and that is exactly what I tell my students.

    http://chicagofighthouse.com

    • Hey guys. I have just came across this form online by accident but I am interested in listening to people’s opinions and it’s great to see how passionate you all are about boxing. I am sure you are all doing fantastic work as coaches . I am a boxing coach from Ireland and i am a coach and condition trainer for the Hatton Academy UK.
      I am sure you are all familiar with Ricky the Hitman Hatton. 5 time World champion in the light welter and wether weight division.
      This is the Rickies training company I tutor and coach for. We deliver boxing training courses all over the UK for coaches or fitness people looking for a qualification as a Boxing trainer. We also run Boxing workshops with Ricky in various areas also.
      That’s just some brief info on the company and what we do.
      Everyone is fully entitled to their own personal opinion and it should be fully respected.
      I am just going to give my own opinion here on my thoughts of the above comments .
      Firstly I have great time for the mittology training as I think it’s something different in terms of the benefits it has to a boxer or any joe soap.
      I use this type of MIT work training with boxers myself but I integrate it into their current training regimes along with sparring, traditional style pad work, toe to toe boxing training techniques with the body belt etc.
      Every coach and every boxer has their own unique styles of performing and coaching.
      At the end of the day the best way to learn technical type of boxing is in the ring sparring learning from your mistakes and your good points.
      This system of mitt work does work when integrated into the training regime of a boxer along with all the other aspects of training. I do agree that a lot of the drills are not realistic as in less hip turns Etc but it is a great system to use along with traditional style free style pad work.
      I use this system a lot but with my own style and sometimes with a body belt.
      I am an assist coach in the Ricky Hatton gym and Ricky uses this type of mitt work all the time with he’s fighters because after training with floyd mayweather senior he saw benefits from it and how it makes he’s fighters react better and counter quicker.
      Like all sports boxing has evolved and I personally think if u can integrate this system into your coaching program that you will see results in reactions and sharpness. But by using it and creating your own style with it just like I have done in the gym with Ricky’s fighters and like Ricky has done with he’s fighters.
      The idea is not to have everyone box like floyd mayweather. Every boxer is different and none of the same style so you have to adapt and use different methods to adapt to a specific boxer and their style.

      In a nut shell. I don’t think it’s a con and I certainly don’t think that this style of mitt work is a hoax. I have seen fighters change dramatically and developed better defensively as a fighter from integrating this system .

      As I always say whatever works for you as a coach or a trainer than stick with it. Don’t worry about what the other coach is doing . Focus on what you do as a coach and do it to the best of your ability. We are all learning in this sport and you will never stop learning.

      Thanks for taking the time to read my comment and keep up the great work you are all doing whatever your opinions are. You are all still doing something very positive :)

  4. I did this it was like Tae Bo on mitts. It was good workout but the same thing over and over.

  5. This dude is so versatile with his pad work and he does reactive mitts. You should check him out and get his take on it. His pad work has led him on a journey around the world doing seminars and fight preps. Here is a sample http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nc6mfXCDr4

  6. and never go to LA Boxing coachs don’t know what their doing. just trick you.

  7. You dismantled this mittwork style. I worked with coaches that did this and it was fun until realized I had to slow down. Id rather spar. Mittology is definitely a hoax you called it . lol. BigLighty RIP. dWayne

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