MOST POWERFUL / EFFECTIVE KICKS IN TAE KWON-DO
Before we get into the details of kicking, you need to know what a kick is in the first place. A kick is basically any thrust, strike or propelling force that comes from the foot/leg. Kicking is extremely important in Tae Kwon-Do, in fact most of Tae Kwon-Do revolves around kicking. For a kick to be effective in combat, it needs to be fast, difficult to block and able to get through you’re opponents guard and hit its target. There are many different kicks and each have their own purpose and application. Some kicks are more useful than others, so I’ll be walking you through the most powerful/effective kicks that are in Tae Kwon-Do.
Let’s go through the attributes of a kick, we’ll start off with the base leg, the leg that stays on the ground during the kick. This leg is just as important (If anything more important) than you’re kicking leg, due to the fact that this leg has to grant you the flexibility to initiate the kick and also has to maintain balance throughout the kick. Whenever you begin a kick, you should allow the heel of the foot of your base leg to be raised slightly upward (Thus resting on the ball of your foot) to maintain maximum mobility while the kick is in motion, allowing you to turn in the correct position for the kick. If you need to shift your position as your initiating the kick, you can also slide/skip on the ball of your foot toward the desired direction. The knee of your base leg should be slightly bent whenever you perform a kicking technique, this adds to the over-all balance of your body; you will be able to adjust your position easily, by adding more or less bend to your knee, to compensate for the height and velocity of your kick.
Now onto the striking leg, first off you never really want to fully extend your leg when kicking. The knee of the striking leg should remain slightly bent. This is accomplished by maintaining muscle control over the lower part of your leg, and not allowing the momentum of the kick to force your leg to hyper extend. Because the knee joint is one of the most sensitive joints of the human body be sure to keep both knees slightly bent, to prevent them hyperextending or bending backward unnaturally.
The basic side snap, is performed by initially shifting the majority of your body weight to your base leg as your striking leg (Be it your front or rear leg) rises up with a bent knee to waist level. As your striking leg rises, you pivot on the ball of your base foot so your heel is facing your target. Your body leans sideways toward the ground as your striking leg is extended toward your target. The impact is made with the heel or outside ridge of your foot. You can substantially increase the range of the side snap by allowing the momentum of its launch to drive you forward. To do so, enter into a fighting stance and begin by launching the side snap with the front or rear leg. As you do this, allow your base leg to free itself up and not be firmly anchored to the ground. By performing the side snap in this fashion, you allow your base leg to slide slightly forward across the floor, propelled by the momentum developed when your striking leg is launched toward its target. Not only does this add to the range of the kick, but also increases its power as well, due to the fact that the force of your entire body is behind it. One of the main problems with delivering the sliding side snap is that many people will release the kick’s power before they are in range of their target. When performing the side snap in this style, it is imperative to remember not to unleash your striking leg’s power from your hip, until your target is close and you are sure of making contact with it. If this kick is done to far from your target, the most you can hope to accomplish is that your extended leg will make touching contact with your opponent. You will not, however, have any debilitating impact. Therefore, keep...
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