My blue belt was practising his side kicks from taekwondo's won-hyo pattern. He was doing a nice 'plain vanilla' side kick against a target. To his credit, the kick was nicely done and generated a lot of power. I however approached him and was looking through his pattern requirements for blue belt. Taekwondo's Yul-guk requires you to perform a side kick, then a control and elbow to your opponent. There's no way you can perform any elbow strike if your side kick sent your opponent flying. So I advised him to change the side kick and strike the target with a short range, close quarter snapping side kick. It's the karate type side kick that's almost undistinguishable from a roundhouse kick if done in the air. Of course he was none impressed with the down shifting of power. You don't get to whallop the target as hard with this kick. This short range snap side kick is not to be applied similarly to the other normal side kick. Firstly it is more versatile and can be used as a takedown tactic. Secondly, it should be applied much lower on the body than a regular side kick. Think of it as a stomp to the knee or shin or foot or fallen opponent. Once you think of it outside the realms of competition or the kick shield, then you'd begin to understand the true worth of it as a self defence or combative weapon.
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 with Colin on FaceBook and Traditional Taekwondo Group on FB.