Jul 01 2009

Three timings on kicks? Not exactly…

Published by at 3:31 pm under Questions for Anton

I received a question a while back on three timings as it pertains to kicks.  Well in short it doesn’t easily.

I could very well get into a long winded explanation on the nature of closing the distance with kicks.  But I believe explaing kicking in a different way would be of more benefit.  We should instead look at your kicking range based on which leg you are using.

If you could please imagine yourself in a ichimonji of the gyokko ryu variety (quick pop quiz for my students) and think about throwing a kick.  I am guessing 99.9 % of you imagined the kick of the rear leg.  Well there you have it, you have established one distance.  Keep in mind though you can also throw a kick with the lead leg.

The lead leg is a bit more tricky because if you don’t close the distance you are limited to hitting something/someone whom is already in your range.  The other option is you are hitting a target which is moving into your space.

Kicks are something that I feel we (as a club) are not very skilled at.  There fortunately is an easy remedy for that.  Training our kicks.  Although the theme for the next couple months is back to curriculum (4th kyu through shodan) I will make sure to practise kicks every class.  Please help me remember because this is something which is very useful when dealing with an opponent whom overpowers you by a fair amount (ask me in class).

Your life is on the line, train well.

5 responses so far

5 Responses to “Three timings on kicks? Not exactly…”

  1. Adam McCollon 02 Jul 2009 at 7:31 am

    There must be something in the air. We have been drilling kicks for the last couple of weeks.

    I offer this foundation exercise for drilling fundamental forward thrust kicks (Zempo keri & Kakushi-keri).

    Assume kamae with left side forward.
    1) Kick with front (left) leg (Zempo-keri). Return to kamae (left lead).
    2) Kick with the rear (right) leg (Kakushi-keri). Return to kamae (left lead).
    3) Kick with the rear (right) leg (Zempo-keri). Switch kamae (right lead). Repeat.

    For 1), bring the rear leg under the body to serve as base while the front leg kicks. Raise the front leg to the torso, then thrust it forward. Flex the ankle and toes to present the heel as the primary weapon. Return the kicking leg to ground with control. Same kamae.

    For 2), raise the rear leg as you transfer body weight to the front leg (backwards Hicho). Drive the rear leg forward, across the body, keeping the hip open. Foot/knee pointing out to side = open hip. Foot/knee pointing up = hip closed. Flex the ankle and toes to present the heel as the primary weapon. Return the kicking leg to ground with control. Same kamae.

    For 3), standard zempo-keri. Return the kicking leg to the ground with control to switching sides. Same kamae with other leg leading.

    All of the above can (should) be practiced through all kamae. The movement of the legs should not disrupt the structure of the upper body. Arms should not be flapping and flailing. Selective tension is the key.

    As you noted, the distance needs to be studied here. Space = time, so this (time) is also a factor.

    Hope that makes sense. Hope it helps. Video is available.

  2. Antonon 02 Jul 2009 at 7:15 pm

    Good stuff Adam. I always like to get feedback like that. I will give it a try.

  3. Mikeon 03 Jul 2009 at 10:58 pm

    My knees are wrecked. Perfect timing. I’ll be on the sidelines a lot this month, then.

  4. Antonon 04 Jul 2009 at 12:48 am

    We will work on kicks but that doesn’t mean the entire month will be kicks. You will get to see the materials covered from 4th kyu through shodan includes much which is not kicks. Sitting out for techniques which have a high potential to aggravate injuries is the best choice though.

  5. BRon 04 Jul 2009 at 1:33 am

    Hi Anton,

    We’ve talked before, so you probably might have seen this coming—if you are training in the basics properly and consistently (especially the Shinden Kihon-gata in its prescribed order) , with focus, you don’t need to really isolate things to work on.

    I was told that you really do not need a lot of techniques – From the kihon happo you can teach and drill those basics, create 6-8 variations on those, then create 6-8 variations of those variations of those, and so forth.

    You have an idea of how I think already and by no means am I saying this is the absolute, true way, rather I think it’s just one of the more practical ways.

    Training slowly, correctly, and diligently in a completely focused and realistic manner is the key, I feel. I strongly feel that this is A way to see whether uke is delivering honest (and realistic) attacks and whether tori has any openings that might get him/her killed or maimed horribly!

    Too many crappy, “dead fish” uke and too many tori worldwide who just want to show off how “good” or “skilled” they are, or how well they can “beat up” their partners.

    These are JUST my ideas – I’m sure I’ve ruffled more than a few feathers on some “proud peacocks” out there… ;)

    Please send me personal mail on the matter if you choose to, thanks!

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