Kick Where it Hurts
This is another installment of Sylvie’s Tips where I seek to share some of the things my Thai trainers are teaching. The other day Kru Nu landed a couple leg kicks on my right (back) leg during padwork. He’s got a good low kick and his Thai students have really whippy, nasty low kicks as well. The first one hurt and all, but the second one – which was a good 10 minutes after the first – landed on just such the perfect spot, with just enough force, and while my weight was on it that I actually collapsed. My leg just wouldn’t hold me up anymore and I was suddenly crumpled on the canvas spitting expletives like they were going out of style. The thigh stayed sore and tight, hard to bend, for a good 4 days afterward, and I’m sure he felt like he barely touched me.
So naturally I asked Kru Nu to show me where exactly on the leg these low kicks should be landing. Do unto others what has been done to buckle you. The two spots are right at the knee (not on the knee, but just barely above it and on the side of the leg), like where you’d put one of those I.T. Band wraps for a knee injury.
The second spot is higher up the leg on the thigh, located higher than I had ever thought to kick and probably about 6-8 inches below the hip. It’s on the same line as this IT Band (Iliotibial band) though, which makes sense why you can take someone down with well-placed kicks to that line of muscle. It hurts, man – you feel it when you walk, you feel it when you sit, when you try to lie on that side… tag it early enough in a fight and you’ll certainly get to see some of the effects within the next few rounds. This is where Kru Nu hit me the other day, just right where that red line starts on the graphic below (noted by the blue arrow).
And those are the two targets, right on the same track down the thigh. Obviously you can hit many different places on the leg and have great affect against your opponent. Kicks below the knee, to the calf, can be incredibly debilitating and kicks to the front of the thigh (quads) or letting your foot tag in a light wrap-around to the back (hamstring) can be really nasty also. But from personal experience of being kicked lightly and finding myself rolling on the floor as a result, I’ll definitely be aiming for the IT Band targets for myself.
This post is part of my Sylvie’s Tips Series. You can read about the series here, or watch the full YouTube Playlist which contains all the videos below:
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