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Kicks

Kicks are strikes that involve the legs, knees, feet or toes. Depending on the intention of the practitioner, his power and/or speed, simple kicks, like the front, side, back or roundhouse kick, can generally be performed one of two ways. First, the practitioner can deliver the kick with a quick snap of the knee and hips. Second, he can deliver it with a powerful hip thrust in which he locks his knees to deliver a focused straight-leg kick.

Advanced kicks require better balance, speed and flair on the part of the practitioner for successful delivery. These kicks include the ax, butterfly, calf, crescent, flying, hook, jumping, multiple in which the same foot kicks many times, spinning with half- or full-body rotation, jumping spin kicks with up to three body rotations in midair, and vertical kicks. These kicks also can be delivered in combinations with each other.

Besides being used as offensive weapons, some styles employ kicks to push back an opponent or to block and/or deflect an attacker’s strikes.

Until Asian martial arts became mainstream in Europe and North America in the 1970s, kicking during fights was considered cowardly. This misperception came about because of American and British attitudes in World War I and II toward French savate practitioners. Because French savateurs kicked, anyone who kicked during a fight was considered weak. Fortunately, times have changed.

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  1. The Front Kick: How to Do It, When to Use It, What to Destroy With It (Part 2)

    The Front Kick: How to Do It, When to Use It, What to Destroy With It (Part 2)

    If you’re a noob, read this article to learn how to use the front kick in sparring. If you’re more experienced, read it to learn how to make your execution of it more effective by fixing the most common mistakes.
    Read More »

  2. The Front Kick: How to Do It, When to Use It, What to Destroy With It (Part 1)

    The Front Kick: How to Do It, When to Use It, What to Destroy With It (Part 1)

    It’s one of the first kicks beginners learn when they take up the martial arts, but that doesn’t mean it’s only for beginners. Done right, it’s among the most effective sparring and self-defense techniques known.
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  3. Wing Chun Techniques: The Secret Weapon Against Leg Attacks

    Wing Chun Techniques: The Secret Weapon Against Leg Attacks

    In 1966, karate legend Joe Lewis rocketed to stardom by winning Jhoon Rhee’s U.S. Nationals in Washington, D.C. Incredibly, it was his first tournament, and he won every single point with only one technique — the side kick.

    For six years, Chuck Norris ruled the karate world with his spinning kicks.
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  4. Get Close-Quarters Combat Training With Seven Krav Maga and Kapap DVDs From International Self-Defense Experts!

    Get Close-Quarters Combat Training With Seven Krav Maga and Kapap DVDs From International Self-Defense Experts!

    Are you into the close-quarters combat training styles of Avi Nardia, Albert Timen, Alain Cohen, Mike Lee Kanarek, Richard Ryan and the like? Are you interested in realistically depicted street-fighting scenarios and step-by-step breakdowns thereof? Then Black Belt has a new group of krav maga and kapap DVDs that might
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  5. Bruce Lee Jeet Kune Do Techniques: Ambush From the Rear

    Bruce Lee Jeet Kune Do Techniques: Ambush From the Rear

    “One must be ready to act without knowing what situation will present itself.”
    —Bruce Lee

    In the following technique sequence from Bruce Lee’s Fighting Method, the “Little Dragon” shows you how to react to an ambush from behind.
    Bruce Lee’s Ambush From the Rear
    [ti_billboard name=”Bruce Lee Jeet Kune Do Techniques: Ambush From the
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  6. Krav Maga Expert Eyal Yanilov Shows You How to Disable an Opponent and Defend Yourself From the Ground

    Krav Maga Expert Eyal Yanilov Shows You How to Disable an Opponent and Defend Yourself From the Ground

    Eyal Yanilov is, by far, one of the most respected krav maga practitioners in the world today. He is currently listed as “master level 3/expert level 8″ in krav maga – the highest rank krav maga founder Imi Lichtenfeld ever awarded to any student. Yanilov’s official title today is chief
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  7. Bruce Lee Jeet Kune Do Techniques: Hook-Kick Combo

    Bruce Lee Jeet Kune Do Techniques: Hook-Kick Combo

    It’s time to continue our study of Bruce Lee’s jeet kune do techniques. Lee maintained that a martial artist must always train, be cautious and alert at all times. In addition to being alert, you must be just as fast when countering an ambush.

    Speed is an innate trait, but it
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  8. Richard Bustillo’s JKD Techniques: Kick Interception

    Richard Bustillo’s JKD Techniques: Kick Interception

    For the next move in our Richard Bustillo’s JKD Techniques series, begin with you and your opponent standing in a left-leg-lead stance. He attacks with a lead-leg front kick, which you intercept by thrusting your left hand into his closest shoulder, thus disrupting his momentum. At the same time, you
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  9. Are Your Favorite Self-Defense Techniques Overrated?

    Are Your Favorite Self-Defense Techniques Overrated?

    The first time you watched your favorite martial arts star wipe out a horde of bad guys with a string of jump-spinning back kicks on the silver screen, you probably were impressed. I know I was. On the other hand, you probably weren’t quite as inspired the first time you
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  10. Colbey Northcutt: Round-Kick Combination

    Colbey Northcutt: Round-Kick Combination

    Colbey Northcutt competes in the toughest sport-karate arenas on the planet: five-star and AAA-rated open tournaments. She’s been inducted into the Black Belt Hall of Fame as the 2009 Competitor of the Year, so she obviously knows what she’s doing. In fact, she was featured in the August 2010 issue
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