And the kicks begin
There are some classes where Sensei Cieplik has us spend most of the time on one or a few techniques. Today was one of those days and improving our roundhouse kick was the technique of choice.
Get the kihon over with…..
We started out doing moving forward and backward with one step doing six techniques in the following order: Front stance, rising block, inward block, outward block, downward block, back stance, knife hand block and front stance with reverse punch.
And the kicks begin….
Sensei had us do start with shuffle up, front leg roundhouse kick followed with shuffle back, rear leg roundhouse kick set down in front, then shuffle up front leg roundhouse kick with shuffle back rear leg roundhouse kick with the other leg. For some reason, this drill really drains me but that could be caused my lack of roundhouse kicking skills.
Very soon after Sensei watched us do the drill above, he had us get a partner and a pad. From there, one partner stood sideways and the other partner stood in a front stance in front of them. The partner, in the front stance, brought their kicking leg up to the side, pivoted on the stationary leg and hit the pad with the knee not the leg. This is a horizontal knee strike which is a regular knee strike turned on its side. The key to this drill is to use the motion of the hip to throw the knee and not use the shoulders or upper body to do it. One thing that I found was to tighten up my abdominal muscles, push my hips under and the knot of my belt forward throwing the knee. If the hips are not under and forward the upper body takes over and the movement comes from the shoulders.
We did a similar drill but this time we did the full kick and extended the lower leg. The idea was to still use the hips and do the knee strike but then to let the stoppage of the knee extend the lower leg and execute the kick. The next drill was to have our partner stand sideways again and we did the horizontal knee strike to their stomach but then leg the lower leg extend around the side and our foot behind them at the end.
Kata for everyone….
Sensei had all of the black belts move off the side while he took some of the lower belts through their kata.. He then called the black belts out for a kata and then alternated both low belts and high belts for a couple more katas.