Monday night’s first lesson was my client’s second lesson of her second course of stand-up fighting combinations. These are the same combinations I have been teaching over the past few months to my Saturday client and Athena Karate. We began this course going over the 14th and final combination, completing the set started in the previous course, and then revising combination one to eight. Tonight, after a 10 minute warm-up round of specific material, we went through three rounds of revision from combination nine to combination 14. During these rounds, I brought in the focus mitts for some virtual pad-work to begin getting everyone used to being fed these combinations. It is interesting to see the difference between pad-work and shadow work when working the same combination. The final round introduced the dice roll method where numbers rolled on dice determined the combination we would cover.
I spent quite a bit of time focusing on the calf kick at the beginning of combination number 11. This kick is set up at the beginning with a cross coming from the same side as the kick. In essence, this combination consists of using the momentum of the cross to drive a double step that sends the low kick forward. When performed in this way it is far more than a standard low round kick. This is what is what is known as a calf-kick and has become increasingly common in MMA. It can be a finisher and serves as both a damaging strike – targeting the tibial nerve and gastrocnemius muscle – and a scything sweep that completely unbalances the opponent. Set ups for it often work off a 45 degree angle step.