Training Aids That Wreck Combat Techniques!

Wait a minute. I thought training aids like power bags, paddles, kick shields, etc. are there to help you learn how to apply taekwondo or karate techniques better?

In a way, yes. However, I have noticed instances where kick shields used to drill roundhouse kicks turn a so-so martial artist into a CRAP martial artist. Not that the kick was any less fast or any less powerful.

The problem is that the kick shield is held outside the visual frame of the body. So the poor student is kicking at an area not central to the objective -- that is to kick onto the human body. All the training aid was good for was to drill a powerful kick on a flat pad held 30 cm away from the body. Why do you think success would falter? Both the eyes and the weapon are calibrated off the main target!

It is up to the instructor to mix and match the use of training aids and kicking onto the body proper (with guard up and guard down) -- this in turn will help students learn how to fully maximise the versatility of taekwondo's kicks.

To think that all kicks are only successful at full extension and maximal range is to cheat yourself of the real tactical advantage of developing accurate and pragmatic kicks.

Related topic on the use of kick shields and muscle dynamics ...
Won-hyo: Where are your eyes on the back of your arse?

And of course, check out the training equipment at the Traditional Taekwondo Shop.


-- Colin Wee Traditional Taekwondo Techniques, Patterns, and Applications at the Traditional Taekwondo Blog. [Subscribe using email or RSS feeds] [Tkd Sitemap]. Colin is a martial art instructor with 25 years of experience across three continents. Colin leads a small Traditional Taekwondo group for adults in Perth, Western Australia. Connect withColin on FaceBook and Traditional Taekwondo Group on FB.


supergroup7 said…
One way to work on this problem as a holder is to put the target away from your body, but in line with your torso. You cannot offer much resistance in this way, as you must allow the force of the strike to send your arm. This type of training can help with targeting, and accuracy.

Kicking a hanging bag, or a BOB would allow for working on the power of a kick. ( In my opinion)
Colin Wee said…
Yeah, visually line up the target with the frame of the body. We do that. I also think that you could work on anything to develop power and accuracy with most any equipment. But when you're talking about more advance kicking skills, you really need to be able to place kicks through defences and onto a human body. Colin

Popular Posts