Re: Sparring aftermath: how to recover/ease pain from body punches?
Do you tend to cover up kinda like Pacqiuao? Guys that do that are really easy to tear up to the body. You don't see the punch coming and are completely exposed. There's no reason you can't protect the head AND body. Tighten up that guard, elbows tight.
What works for me is a normal guard (wlad, calzaghe, really the majority of fighters). One hand high, one either low or semi-extended. You see better. Head punches you just slip, parry, and counter. Body shots you either step away from or take on your elbows. The only time the earmuffs come on is when you're trying to close in for a phonebooth fight.
Abs won't do shit. Nothing at all. You really gonna be flexing them in the ring? No way. Even if you did, the shots that hurt are to the ribs. Prevention is the cure. You need to anticipate bodyshots and counter them hard. Pivot away from them or step back. Or try to catch the punch with your elbow.
Another way is to become a bodypuncher. People won't want to sit in range of your Bodyshots, which means they can't land their own.
If you catch a good one then smoke'a de ganja or pop some aspirin and learn from your mistake. Bodyshots are great weapons. You can stop anyone with a good one. They help you slow the opponents pace and make him tentative about letting his hands go.