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The Ax Forum
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Posted: 2010-08-06 16:39:12

When kicking with the back leg I understand that you should step 45 degrees and that the standing leg should be bent with the foot raised on to the ball of the foot. Sometimes the foot is flat but thagt's a different story.

What I want to know is should the foot be directly beneath you or a bit further in front?
Posted: 2010-08-08 10:09:14
I have to be honest, I dunno. I think you're concentrating on the wrong things. Gettin the main things right will usually mean that a lot of the little details will take care of themselves because the most natural way of doing them will probably be the correct way of doing them.
Posted: 2010-08-09 02:08:10
Hmmm...there's so much to a round many different styles of throwing many variables.

How do you want to throw the strike - with power? Accuracy? Speed? To displace your opponent? Or to hit a precise point?

Are you striking with your instep, ball of foot, lower shin, mid shin, upper shin?

How is your weight shifting - static? Forwards? Backwards? Sideways? Rotating? Skip-kicking? Switch kicking?

There's no right or wrong way to through a round kick - just the most appropriate kick at the right time for the right purpose.

My advice would be to get a relevently experienced coach to have a good look and give you direct advice...

Best regards,

My Blog:
Posted: 2010-08-14 17:59:53
Thanks for the reply. Just watched a Coban fight and saw him generate huge power with a standing foot which looked flat to the canvas.
Mark L.
Posted: 2010-08-16 09:36:46
I trained for over ten years on the balls of my feet. Spent some time training more flat and transitioned to that.

General rule in my opinion is balance. The Thais generally kick these days with the base leg relatively straight (therefor they are more balanced) underneath the body. Westeners often fall when the leg is caught just cause they kick in such an off balanced manner. At least thats my limited experience and observation.

Leg kicks can be a bit different... but the general rule in my opinion is balance at all times.

Certainly a good coach watching you would be the best in my opinion.

Seriously though its not rockey science. Watch some good kickers and just look at what they are doing and copy it. Done!

We over analyze everything in the west it seems to me. Over think it (left brain). We are also conditioned to look to the teacher too much and don't know how to refer to self.

What angle the leg? Do both and see how it feels for you. Watch fighters who you think have good kicks and see what they do and then try it out and see if it works for you.

A student asked me a question the other day. Thjis way or that way. I told her to try both and see how it felt. She came up with what I would have told her.

Another thing I find helps people a lot! Stop, relax, get into a space where you pretend you already know it. Really pretend you know what you are doing... then do it. Let go and just play.

School and parents have taught us to gwet it right and its "is it right or wrong?" Just fucking do it and keep getting better. its a journey that can be never ending (if you want to move towards your potential)...

Teacher tell me, parent tell me, doctor tell me, priest tell me, government tell me...

My goal is that I'm a guide, not a teacher and I guide my guys to start to feel there body so they can know what they are doing and feel what works for them. And of figure it out...

Get into right brain a little more than just left. Both balanced is ideal. We have a tendency in the west to be mostly in the left.

Diamond Gate (exercise to link left and right hemispheres before or after training - also helps reset nervous system, amazing!!!!!!! for recovery, and even helps line up your jaw - which affects neck and back etc)

Alternate Nostril Breathing - linking left and right hemispheres

Also try just oxygenating right brain - plug right nostril and breath deep and slow through left for a minute or two.

Balance is key but it could be worth doing just right brain and seeing how you feel training - maybe compare with just left....

Brian Ritchie
Posted: 2010-08-16 10:11:38
Someone once told me to visualize my base leg as if it's a screw that is being screwed into the floor while I'm kicking. That visualization changed my kicking quite a bit.

Of course, I originally kicked (like a lot of westerners) similar to a dancer, up on the ball of my foot with my center of gravity really high.
Posted: 2010-08-16 16:23:37
Mark L, nice post. Guilty of over analysing, indeed I am. Kicked flat-footed on heavy bag today. Lost that floaty ball of foot feeling. Kicked much harder and felt my centre of balance root deeper. A friend who does Karate once told me to kick like that but I kept with what I thought was Thai style. Now I see that many great kickers keep their standing foot flatter. Including fighters from the big name British camps. Thanks again for all responses.
Posted: 2010-08-16 20:04:25
If I can kick like Buakaw I'll be happy. He definately goes on the ball of his feet.
Mark L.
Posted: 2010-08-18 09:26:09
Brain wrote
"Someone once told me to visualize my base leg as if it's a screw that is being screwed into the floor while I'm kicking. That visualization changed my kicking quite a bit."

Love it - I'm going to use it - know who suggested that to you?

Up or down both work - it does seems to me that the type of kick is slightly different in other areas to make both work...

Do it and see what works... keeping in mind if you already do one way it may take time to transition before it feels good.
Brian Ritchie
Posted: 2010-08-18 09:51:54
"Love it - I'm going to use it - know who suggested that to you?"

Eric Haycraft here in Louisville, Kentucky. He originally trained in "American Kickboxing" briefly before he got into Muay Thai, so he was familiar with those habits. I was really bad about lifting my center of gravity up when I kicked.

He said he preferred training someone from scratch because it's more of a clean slate. I can understand why.
Mark L.
Posted: 2010-08-19 08:44:25

My experience is a lot of guys focus on the kicking leg way way too much (same with punches (the punch) and everything else.

The whole body is used to kick and with an over focus on the kicking leg the tendency seems to be kicking with the leg as opposed to full body synchronized movement. The base leg is often way under used. I teach what I call "the no kick kick". I tell them to forget about the kicking leg completely. Now of course the kicking leg is an equal part (not bigger in my opinion) but the huge focus is there already. I think the power comes from the launch from the ground (including the standing legs step), use of the ground during the kick, and core, balance (bigger focuses anyway).

It seems to help to get guys to think of a baseball club or golf club as the kicking leg. A baseball bat uses no power of its own. Its swung, there are no muscles used in the bat itself. Besides the launch and using enough muscle to position the leg and hold it firm for contact there is no "kick" in the kicking leg (like a Karate kick).

I think thats fairly accurate for what i find functional and seems to help guys from kicking more like Karate (unless that is what they want.
Posted: 2010-08-19 15:11:25
Argh it's not that hard to get the basics. Just relax and kick the damn bag/pads and don't tell someone more than one point to work on at a time.

All these comparisons with other things and stuff are only useful based on the person you're coaching. Just tell em to kick. hit with the shin, turn the hips and relax the kicking leg. BASICS. They'll get it after a while anyway.
Mark L.
Posted: 2010-08-20 08:51:29
I do think individuals learns differently.

I think ideas of ways of communicating, showing, manually moving the individual etc are awesome as everyone does learn so differently.

I agree with basics. But to me basics go back to basic movement. I don't teach any striking (when I have it my way and in my ideal world, until certain movements are down. Stance, relax and how to move the body. The first step in kicking or punching are ways of moving the body without throwing a kick or punch.

Kicking and punching are very complex movements and when you have guys adding power (especially cause everyone tends to want to go hard) it is not basic, in my opinion.

But I do agree and think keeping it simple is the key, cause it is simple! (IF you feel and know your body and how to move it - then you can learn anything).

Just watch and do it works for many.
One thing I find helps with most people is to put your hands down, forget about fighting, get into a space where you pretend you already know what you are doing and then do it. Way way easier. (maybe watch someone and then pretend to be them.

A big draw back in learning, in my experience, is how we have been conditioned to learn from school, parents etc... the judgment and getting it right etc

In my class I tell them there is no right or wrong. Just like it is not wrong for a baby to learn to crawl before it walks or falling when it walks is not bad either... thats how you learn. There are no mistakes in my class, just an opportunity to learn, practice, develop etc.
the more this comes across the easier I find it is for guys to get things.

If I train for 100 yrs I hope my kick improves for a hundred yrs so why, at any stage, are mistakes bad... its just awareness of what you are doing so you can continue to change and improve imo

Often working with a professional who can help you find blocks (conscious or subconscious) to learning, performance etc and releasing them can make a huge difference.

Learning should be fun and not stressful in my opinion. But everyone of us is conditioned through our life experience. The earlier experiences and the bigger ones (related to the emotional charge + or -) become filters through which we learn etc so shifting the filters allows for learning (performance etc)

At least thats my experience
dodgy price
Posted: 2010-09-20 09:41:54
Mods could this topic be not moved to the main forum? I know that it is in the right forum now but there are some exceptionally gifted coaches and fighters that could really add to this and will make a really good read
Posted: 2010-09-21 06:35:26
I think as long as you turn on the balls or knuckles of your under foot when kicking it doesn,t really matter. To do this your heel will raise off the floor and push your power into the kick. This is what they taught me in Thailand. Each gym will tell you different things so you need to try a few different ways and see what is comfertable with you.
Mark L.
Posted: 2010-09-25 09:45:17
I don't try to go up high when I kick but I certainly keep the weight on balls and the heal will move some. If your heal is weighted you'll bugger your knee.

Ajan Lom Essan (Taught at Sor. Tanikul) Went up high on the toes...many old school do.

But if you watch fights today, many fighters stay pretty flat footed. - After going very high on th toes for over 10 yrs.. I started going more flat footed and prefer it.

If one is interested in how to's the best bet, often is to sit and watch good fighters and see what they do.
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