Fluid Fighting (diary entry)


I kicked off 2016 with a double private lesson on kickboxing. The lesson focused on developing fluidity through combinations and the correct execution of certain basic techniques.

We began with a look at the Muay Thai teep and differentiated it from the standard front kick found many other strike based martial arts. This is something I recently did when I began another client’s second course on kickboxing for cross-training. I feel it is important to make this distinction early for cross-trainers, as the teep has many unique qualities that are useful when understood. We looked at the trajectory of the kick and its utility in fighting. A short-cut to describing the teep is to call it “the front push-kick”, but that is not really accurate. Many a knockout has been caused by a well-aimed teep, which can be used to stomp and jab as much as push. We looked at the way the teep can used as a low strike to jam an opponent, to set up punches and as a very effective alternative to low round kicks.
We then began combining the teep with punches and the round kick. The teep/round-kick combination is a great tactic in destabilising an opponent before throwing in an impactful kick. This moved us onto punching and kicking in combination. The fluidity of Southeast Asian kickboxing sports is worth noting. Kicks and punches are generally taught together, and have very short delays. A lot of the secret to this also comes from the rhythmic footwork. As my music teaching client put it, a lot of kicks in other striking sports are more staccato in their execution.
We then looked at some same-side combination work, working the hook/round kick combination. This movement was carried over into clinch work. Here the move to clinch was compared to the jab, the chopping elbow to a short hook and turning an opponent off at 45 degrees into a diagonal knee to a round kick.