Friday, November 25, 2011
This is one of my favorite techniques. Done correctly, it combines devastating power with fast deployment and is very difficult to block when thrown full power. On the street, this can be all it takes to end the fight, and can succeed even when thrown into the thigh rather than destroying the knee joint (which can cause permanent damage).
The low kick can be done with either leg.
Tactically, the low kick is very useful for helping to drop the opponent's guard and opening up the higher lines by drawing the attention to these painful kicks. Not much hip flexibility is required, and the large muscles of the legs can do a lot more damage than punching.
The keys to executing the low kicks well are:
correct distance --- achieved by use of the set-up step to adjust range
correct power --- achieved by proper base leg placement and hip rotation
correct counterbalance --- achieved by using the hands to keep balance during rotation
correct focus --- following the kick through the target past the opponent's leg
correct angle --- striking perpendicular to the target rather than angled
This kick can be delivered to the inside or outside of the opponent's legs, and when usinbg the full step can even be used to attack the opponent's rear or base leg, which is particularly effective (called "cut kicking"). The principal targets for this attack are the knee, the thigh, and the sciatic nerve found on the outside seam of the pant leg.
I especially like attacks to the sciatic nerve since a strong direct hit can result in knockout, which is high effectiveness for a leg attack. Even a proximity hit to the sciatic line can cause numbness and loss of sensation in the limb, which can be enough to finish the fight. a quick look on youtube will reveal examples of how effective these can be.
Rather than being a headhunter, which looks cool in movies but is risky on the street, low line kicks offer a great weapon for men or women, can be learned relatively quickly, and have devastating effect when used correctly. Their usefulness should not be ignored.
See you in class.