Taekwondo Side Kick Defence and Timing

Taekwondo Side Kick Defence and Timing

A fighter can 1) Wait for the attack and counter, 2) attack simultaneously, or 3) preempt and prevent attack from coming.

Last night we had a small class, so I let the green and yellow belt practice with each other. One drill was to allow the green belt to practice his taekwondo side kick, and on the defence was yellow belt using a push kick to stop the side kick from landing.

The push kick off front foot can be used either against the kicking leg itself, the hip, or the support leg.

A huge problem was firstly encountered. It was extremely hard to get the timing right. And of course the timing was wrong -- the push kick was launched when the side kick had been identified, and was already accelerating in mid air. Both participants were doing their kicks at the exact same time like 'other' drills. It became a tae ro bics class!

To properly execute this technique, first the lead leg is used because it is closer to the opponent; the distance it travels is much shorter and thus can get to where it has to get to on time. The next is to read the opponent - when the opponent is shifting back, this is the time to launch the counter attack. Not when the side kick is already on its way. Attacking simultaneously NEVER MEANS to launch your own technique when you see the other technique. It means you need make judgement the moment before the technique is launched.

To make sure your body is responsive, the split second you recognise the body shift, tighten the abdominal muscles and exhale. The nature of the exhalation should tighten your core, and should allow you to bring your leg up and signal the larger muscles to act accordingly.

Having optimal relaxation also allows you to judge the nature of the attack and decide on whether other premptive measures should be taken to reduce the impact, if your defence fails and the side kick comes your way.

Calibrating the side kick
Taekwondo Side Kick: Yul-guk v Won-hyo
Jumping Side Kick

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.

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