An Introductory article to prepare for fundamental kicking
By Grandmaster Tony Vohra. Photographs by Jeff Scott-Smith
In this article I will introduce you to twist kick, which can be delivered with the ball of the foot or the instep. Think of twist kick as opposite to turning kick.
There is no twist at the knee in twisting kick - only in the hip joint. That being the case, you must stretch to gain flexibility there. Itís very important in this connection to practise the splits and side stretches.
Practise twist kick with your back foot, though once you have mastered it, you can try skipping forward and using your front foot.
Face your partner (or a mirror) in left fighting stance and always aim the kick through your opponentís centre line. Always aim at a target to get your positioning right.
First, practise against the empty air and begin with your weaker leg - because we all had a weaker leg once!
Start off kicking to about waist height and gradually work your way up to head height and above.
Begin from fighting stance with your left leg forward. Bring the rear knee up, with the foot touching the bent supporting leg through the centre line of your body.
Final position strikes home on the ball of the foot with heel up and toes down.
Remember: the force of a technique comes not from the fist or foot itself but from the power propelling it. Try to tighten your stomach muscles to improve your impact on your target.
Now you have an idea of the basic movement involved. You need to practise so you develop an accurate & devastating technique.
The next step in technique development is to find something to connect with - like a pad, focus mitt or punch bag. This allows you to gauge your increasing power.
Once you are satisfied with your delivery to a stationary target, then itís time to practise with a partner. Practise kick for kick, applying it when moving forward (attacking), or backward (counter-attacking).
Tony is always pleased to advise individual students, clubs and instructors, and he will arrange courses & seminars athome and abroad to suit. Write to:
Grandmaster S. S. Vohra, International School of Martial Arts UK HQ,
Nottingham School of Tae Kwon Do,
Ilkeston Rd., Nottingham NG7 3FX,
telephone him at 0115-978- 0439, fax 0115- 978-5567,
for individual stretching programmes or for access to Kukkiwon certification.