Home Special Skills Kicks and legwork

Basic kicking practice

Somewhat belated note from a class taught by Max Franz; had to leave early, but the legwork progression is definitely noteworthy.

The initial few exercises focused on working the knees and maintaining balance.


Kicks - escape from counter-attack

Ex 1: Going down on the floor on one leg. On exhale, start slowly squatting down on one leg until your butt touches the floor while lifting the other leg up and stretching it forward. You will end up sitting up on the floor with one knee touching your stomach and the other leg stretched forward on the floor. To complete the move, stretch forward the leg that you squatted on. When done, stand up and repeat.

Tips: The move down needs to be continuous. Try to keep your body as straight as possible and land your butt where the feet were. In the process, keep your arms down by the sides of your body (do not lift them up); you can lean your body forward a little toward the stretched leg. Also, make sure to keep the heel of the squatting leg on the floor (do not lift it up).

Once you are on the floor, there are various ways to stand up, for example:

  1. Roll over until you stand on all fours and lift one leg backward and up on inhale. When the leg can't go any further and starts retracting, push off the floor with one or both hands and retract the leg to stand up on inhale (this will feel as if the retracting leg is pulling you up)
  2. Alternatively, you can go on your knees and stand up from the kneeling position.

Tip: Try to not use your hands for support when standing up except when they are part of the move such as in (1) above. Even then, try to use just one hand to push off the floor. Concentrate on keeping your body straight and arms close to the body.

Ex 2: Variation of Ex 1. Stand up straight. On exhale, make a soft lunge forward with a leg so that your upper body is lowered down and most of its weight rests on the forward leg that's bent in the knee (again, the upper body must remain straight). The other leg will stretch and its tow should remain in contact with the floor. When you cannot go down any further, rotate your hips around the straight leg outward and down to lower your butt onto the floor. You will end up squatting on the leg used for the lunge. Continue lowering your butt until it touches the floor; then straighten the bent leg and put it on the floor next to the other.

Repeat this exercise making a sideways lunge to either side. Note that you won't have to rotate your hips as much as when you lunged forward.

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