The rear leg round kick
The rear leg round kick is a shin kick used to strike the calf, the thigh, the ribs, the kidneys, or the neck. This is an extremely powerful kick, in which the turning of the hips swings the leg like a baseball bat. The focus must be THROUGH the target. If you make contact with the kick, withdraw the leg back to its original position. The trick is, the harder you kick, the more you will “bounce” off the target. Use the bounce to withdraw the leg.
The rear leg round kick aimed at the legs (the “low kick”) can be used to “punish the legs”. Every time your opponent wastes energy, you should capitalize on the opportunity. Kick your opponent in the legs every time they try to lift their leg and every time they try to put them down. For example, use the low kick every time your opponent misses with a kick or if they lift their leg but don’t kick. Kick the legs as soon as their foot touches the ground.
The leg block
The leg block is an effective method of blocking the low kick. It involves raising the knee and opening the hip as the strike lands. The opening of the hip is essential; simply raising the knee will not lessen the impact of the blow. The knee must be raised to meet the elbow and there must be an overlap. The elbow can either be outside or inside the thigh but must overlap as to not provide a possible opening for a powerful kick to slip through. Immediate counters must be practiced from the leg block.
At New York San Da, we teach our students that “nothing is for free”. An opponent should never be able to attack us without consequences. Blocking is essential, but only blocking gives your opponent a sense of confidence. They realize that they can attack and the worst thing that can happen is that you will block. If you use counter attacks, they will have to worry that every time they attack, they might be struck with a counter attack.
NOW GO TRAIN!