High Kicks: Why stretch to do something stupid?

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High Kicks: Why stretch to do something stupid?

Postby HanshiClayton » Sun Sep 23, 2012 2:04 pm

Note: If you enjoy "trophy karate," these remarks are not for you. However, if you pursue karate-jutsu for self-defense, read on.

I used to enjoy kicking a heavy bag (or B.O.B.) but I was forced to re-think that whole picture. Kicks are powerful, but the kicker is very, very vulnerable. High kicks simply had no place in oriental fighting until tournament rules made it illegal to kick the groin or grab the kicking leg. Then people started doing roundhouse kicks to the head. Note that the roundhouse kick leaves your groin wide open, not to mention all of your weight on one straight leg. Biker-bar bouncers just grin and snap-kick the groin or the supporting thigh. End of discussion.

Not to mention that kicks are very slow when you have shoes on. Put on your hiking boots and try it.

I have studied training videos from Gracie Jujitsu and from Budoshin Jujitsu, and both cheerfully show you how to catch that high roundhouse kick and twist it sharply to throw the kicker face-down on the floor. (If they twist sharply enough, the result is a spiral fracture of the tibia, like skiers get.) Then they squat into a figure-4 leg lock. The leg lock is excruciating, but that's not the bad part. All they have to do is bounce their weight on you a bit and your knee ligaments rip out.

At the Claw of the Dragon (my dojo), I just don't let my students kick high. They'll get a leg ripped off. We don't kick higher than the knee.
Bruce D. Clayton, Ph.D.
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