The last lesson of 2016 consisted of pure stand-up work. We focused on western boxing and then Muay Thai, looking at simple mechanics for linear and circular strikes. The lesson began on the focus mitts with attack and defence tactics used in western boxing. We covered cutting off the ring, stepping off the line, dropping below the eye-line of an opponent for attack. Then we covered slipping, bobbing and weaving, and drawing an opponent for defence.
Next we moved onto Muay Thai work. This time we looked at same-side hand/foot combinations. I used this to focus on generating the back and forth torque required for strikes. This began with the simple jab/teep combination and then moved onto the double jab/high round kick/cross combination. Then we turned our attention to just circular techniques and used the hook/round kick power combination. This led us onto power generation in general.
We isolated the cross, the hook, the rear leg round kick, the diagonal elbow and the diagonal knee as power strikes. I discussed the use of Olympic lifts such as the snatch and the clean, which are great for developing explosive power. When training for pure power strikes one should approach each individual strike like a heavy lift. This will help coordinate all the muscles and create an awareness of the correct biomechanics used in order to create maximum impact. However, having worked them as single heavy strikes it makes good tactical sense to then immediately train each technique in rapid succession. If you just train heavy and powerful strikes you open yourself up for the problem of not having an immediate plan b should the strike not be completely successful. When training strikes I like to follow Mo Teague’s principle of examining technique, developing speed and then developing power. Each area should be studied separately as well as in unison.
@Copyright Photography by Charlotte Von Bulow Quirk Photography as featured in “Mordred’s Victory and Other Martial Mutterings” and the upcoming “Bullshitsu and the Fight to Make Martial Arts Work”