Kick Smuggling (diary entry)

low kick07.04.18


This morning brought my client’s second course in Muay Thai for Martial Arts Cross Training up the three hour point. We continued worked on setting up kicks and introducing advanced kicking techniques.


The warm-up began with mirror foot-work. This included forward, backward and v-stepping actions. We looked for targets and how to expose an opponent to attacks. We made a distinction between Western Boxing and Muay Thai by focusing the way Muay Thai covers and takes ground, and the relatively short distance that is maintained. We then began looking at using jabs and pushing to set up kicks. Next I introduced mid and low teeps to perform a similar function.


Training then went onto the focus mitts, where we looked in detail at round kicks being set up by the jab and the jab/cross punching combination. Respectively this is the rear leg round kick and the front leg round kick. We worked a lot on maintaining posture and balance throughout the action as well as fluidity. I isolated pivoting to ensure maximum speed and power was delivered as well as recovering in a way that allowed for the legs to shin-block against low round kick counters.


I used a sandwiching principle with the kicks to promote smoothness in their execution. This was done by “smuggling” the kick in between punches. I then removed the last punches, leaving my client with an effective kick on the end of his punching combination and a strong defence, ready to continue if required.


We looked at the Dutch way of throwing a low kick, allowing for a closer range and a sharper diagonal angle. I also brought in the switch-kick to give the lead front kick more power and we also discussed possible tactical applications using feigns. We went back over the side-kick/teep recovery from a missed back leg round and also the back-kick as a similar recovery tactic. Finally I introduced the reverse round-kick, aka the spinning heel kick, aka the back spinning kick.

Photography by Phillip Shirley


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