I'm a noob to this forum and to mma itself. But I was wondering if anyone can shed some light on how to punch faster. I look like a granny when I'm throwing punches. I try to relax as much as I can but the punches still look very slow and it doesn't "snap" at the end of the punch. I'll upload some vids soon to show you what I mean.
Thanks in advance !
It's hard to say without a video, but I noticed you said that you're lacking 'snap' at the end of your punch... That might be the key here.
The two biggest mistakes that newbies make that affect punching speed is clenching their muscles too tightly and throwing their punches from the wrong places.
I'm sure you've heard your coaches tell you to stay loose before, and for good reason, because it's extremely important. You want to have 'a little air in your fist' as you throw your punches until the instant before they impact your target. Your punches should be thrown quick and with intention, but at the same time, each punch thrown shouldn't be too strenuous.
Your muscles should tighten to explosively launch your fist forward, loosen up as its traveling, then clench again to brace your fist for impact. If you feel slow, you're probably clenching the entire way through, which will cause your muscles to fight each other. That will make your punches slower, more tiring, and more of a 'push' than a 'strike.'
Now you've said that you're trying to relax, and I believe you're trying, but I felt like the above explanation is obligatory in any thread about punching speed nonetheless. Now that I've gotten that out of the way, the other possibility is that you're throwing your punches from the wrong places.
Everyone is told to keep their hands up, but a lot of people who are just beginning only know half of the benefits -- they think it's just for defense. While having your hands in the right place can definitely save you from getting KO'd, it also will allow you to throw your best possible punch. I'll say it again your best possible punch is fired right off your cheeks (from your stance).
If you throw a cross from a correct stance, it will fire in a straight line and be propelled by your whole body working together. If you throw your cross from your chest, it will arc a little bit and you'll lose the synergy that is found in a good punch (which makes it both fast and strong). Even worse is when people pull back their punches first since that will slow down the strike AND telegraph it.
The other benefit to throwing your punches from your cheeks is that, not only are you firing from where you're strongest, but doing this will give you a little extra speed and power during combinations. Pull your right hand back to your face when you throw a jab and it will further engage your shoulders for that punch. Do the same when you throw that cross, hook, or uppercut and it'll give you a boost in both speed and power.