front kick

Front Thrust Kick

It's the Kick That Gets No Respect, But It Works!

The front thrust kick isn't the most dynamic technique in the dojo. Perhaps it's because there isn't a lot of excitement in seeing or performing it.

Unlike a front snap kick that flicks up to head height or even higher, the front thrust kick looks more like you're stomping at a door that won't open. It just doesn't have the elegance. And unlike the snap kick, it's nearly impossible to make an effective thrust kick any higher than you can raise the knee of your kicking leg.

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The Front Kick: How to Do It, When to Use It

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.

For taekwondo fighters, it's a scoring technique used to impart “trembling shock" against an opponent's chest protector. For muay Thai stylists, it's a defensive technique effected by shoving against an opponent's abdomen. For karate stylists, it's a stunning technique aimed at an opponent's solar plexus.

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Noel Plaugher The One Muay Thai Kick

There are 67 official throws in Judo. Xing Yi Quan has 5 element forms, twelve animal forms, linking forms, and weapons forms. Shou Shu Kung fu has over 100 techniques. No doubt, the art you study has a plethora of material as well. What if you focused on one thing?

While it is exciting to learn that next new technique, and amass a wealth of material, what if you chose one thing (kick, punch, throw, submission), and wrung every ounce of power, application and use from it? What if you refined that one thing and made it your ultimate "go to" technique? Take one thing and make it your best.

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Martial Arts Kick

Flying triple spinning tornado kicks are certainly impressive. Pull one off, and you'll get a ticket to the cool kids' table for sure.

Just check out the crowd reaction when a full-contact fighter successfully lands a fancy spinning kick. The deafening cheers are enough to inspire any kid to make a midnight bedroom window escape and camp out in front of the local dojo's front door. Admit it: When you started training, you dreamed of these flashy kicks.

The problem is that these kicks, although impressive, aren't very practical. Even at a high skill level, there's only a small likelihood of them succeeding.

But effective kicks are boring. What martial art teacher worth the salt in Bruce Lee's sweat wants to teach boring stuff? And what student wants to spend their hard, long training hours learning boring kicks?

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