How to improve your Martial Arts Kicks

Kicking is the part of Choi Kwang Do that I have noticed a LOT of people struggle with over the years.  I should know as I have been one of them.  For years I was more than happy with my punches and strikes, but found my kicks just never seemed to click into place and I struggled with them.  I learned a few simple tips that allowed me to greatly improve my kicking abilities and feel my kicking techniques have come on a great deal ever since.

I recorded the tips on video as I thought it would be easier to demonstrate over video, rather than have you read the tips.  If you like the blog post please comment and share.

I hope you enjoy these training tips.  If your interested in Choi Kwang Do classes for your child, family member or yourself and are in the Bristol or Trowbridge area then please go to my web site at http://www.CKDBristol.co.uk for more information on our Choi Kwang Do classes that are great for teaching you self defence, self-confidence and also keeping you fit and healthy no matter your age.  We offer 2 FREE lessons to all who sign up via the web site.

If you don’t live in my area and are interested in Choi Kwang Do then please visit http://www.ChoiKwangDo.com where you can find the nearest location to you.  Most of the classes offer some sort of free lessons so please take a look.

Regards

Dale Miller

Master Instructor of Choi Kwang Do.

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How to improve your Choi Kwang Do Front stance.

The Choi Kwang Do Front Stance is a very easy stance to perform.  And as Choi Kwang Do only uses this stance for virtually all of its techniques and patterns, it is incredibly important to get the stance correct.  You should think of your stance as the foundation on which pretty much ALL of your techniques is built upon.  So even some basic errors in the stance can have a big effect on your balance, power creation, weight distribution etc.  If you find kicking difficult, chances are that making a little adjustment to your stance can make a world of difference.

With that in mind, I have made a short video highlighting how to get into your front stance, and also some pointers that seem to have been lost along the years, such as shifting your weight slightly onto your rear leg, bend at the knees slightly etc.

 

 

If your interested in Choi Kwang Do classes for your child, family member or yourself and are in the Bristol or Trowbridge area then please go to my web site at http://www.CKDBristol.co.uk for more information on our Choi Kwang Do classes that are great for teaching you self defence, self-confidence and also keeping you fit and healthy no matter your age.  We offer 2 FREE lessons to all who sign up via the web site.

If you don’t live in my area and are interested in Choi Kwang Do then please visit http://www.ChoiKwangDo.com where you can find the nearest location to you.  Most of the classes offer some sort of free lessons so please take a look.

Regards

Dale Miller

Master Instructor of Choi Kwang Do.

10 Tips to keep your children SAFE

  1. GIVE KIDS PERMISSION TO SAY NO TO ADULTS: It is important for children to know that they have ownership of their bodies and minds, so parents, teach and give your children support that they can say no to affection from other adults, even if they are family members. Don’t allow them to have affection forced on them. Do you remember having to kiss people you didn’t want to as a child? Now that you are an adult, how would you feel being made to kiss another person that you didn’t want to? Give your children the same respect you would for yourself and don’t allow any forced affection. This is especially important when you bear in mind that in a majority of cases of abuse, the child knows or is related to the abuser.
  1. NO SHORTCUTS: If your children are old enough to be walking around alone or in groups then teach them to always take well populated routes, and not to risk taking a shortcut that takes them out of sight of the public. Most self defence/stranger awareness courses teach children to use their voice to get helpful adult attention should a stranger try and grab them, by shouting out “help, stranger”, “stranger danger” and words to that effect. This is the most important part of the defence strategy as an adult is going to be much stronger than a child and so relying just on punching, kicking and striking isn’t the best option. Encouraging children to take the same route home each day will also help friends or parents find them if they are late.
  2. IMPORTANT INFORMATION: All children should memorize their name, address and phone number. Parent’s names and work numbers are also valuable information to have. This is extremely important in order for kids to be able to tell the police, or other helpful adults how to get in touch with their parents. Make sure that kids know the area code as well, in case they are abducted and are able to escape to call home themselves. Teach specific drills for dialling 999 so that the kids know what to do in case of an emergency at home. Let them know how serious it is, and that it is only for emergencies.
  1. WHEN LOST: Plan with your children what to do should they get lost. If your child gets lost teach them to stay calm and either goes to a pre-arranged meeting point, or to go to the nearest shop/police station etc. Teach your children to look for people in uniform such as police, security guards, shop workers etc.
  1. TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS: Teach your children that if someone or something is making them feel uncomfortable, that they should trust their instincts and go and find their parents, or a responsible safe adult straight away. If they feel they are being followed, teach them to cross the road safely, or change direction, and use windows and other reflective surfaces to keep an eye on anyone they feel is following them. Teach your children to never speak to strangers, especially passers-by in cards. Remember to teach them that it isn’t RUDE or bad manners to IGNORE a stranger. You don’t want to give a stranger a chance to talk to your child and lower their guard. Better safe than sorry in this case.
  1. CHECK IT OUT: All parents live busy hectic lives, but please take the time to check out the credentials of those who run your children’s activities. I have been teaching self defence classes for many years and I have yet to have a parent ask me to see any credentials or checks on my criminal record. Please don’t be afraid to ask those looking after your children to see these credentials, we WONT be offended at all.
  1. CODE WORD: Work out a code word between your children. We might have times when we might not be able to pick them up and need a close friend or relative to pick our children up. In these instances a code word is a great way to make sure that your children know it is safe to go off with this adult. A lot of the time when children are abused or abducted it is done by someone we know, who is able to get them to drop their guard through familiarity. It will also help in the event that the adult uses an excuse such as “your mum/dad is in hospital and can’t pick you up, come with me”. Remember, no code word, then they should stay at school, or with someone they can trust.
  2. TEACH YOUR CHILDREN HOW TO SAFELY USE THE INTERNET:

The internet is a great resource for information for everyone, but it does have its dangers. There are many things online that you would not like your child to see at all. There are plenty of software packages available that would filter out the majority of inappropriate content that can be found. The internet also opens up another potential danger area for children. There is now a growing trend for adults to “Groom” children over the internet. Grooming consists of an adult pretending to be of a similar age, and have similar tastes to a child in order to get their confidence. After gaining trust, these people arrange to meet the child at a specific place. It is important that you teach your children never to give out their address, passwords or too much personal information online.

  1. NO PERSONALIZED CLOTHING: Our names are very powerful to us. If someone we don’t know uses our name it can help disarm us and make us drop our guard. How many of you have been approached by someone you don’t recognise and then feel obligated to carry on talking even though you don’t remember them? If your children have their name on their clothes on somewhere easy to see it gives a stranger an easy way of finding out their name. Similarly all it would take is for a stranger to hang around a park listening to your child play sports to quickly find out their name as kids will shout out at each other for the ball etc… Do not teach them to say “I can’t talk to strangers”; teach them not to speak to strangers. Do not allow them to get caught up in a web of conversation.
  2. GOOD TOUCH – BAD TOUCH: This is a sensitive subject to discuss, but it gets very easy with repetition. If a child gets used to talking about this, it will then be much easier to report if it ever does occur. Identify that a good touch is a hug, a kiss on the cheek, a pat on the back or shaking hands. “Doesn’t it make you feel good when Mum gives you a hug or a kiss”? That feeling is called “good touch”. “Bad Touch” is if anyone touches their private areas where their “bathing suit covers”. Bad touch is also feeling that the touch is “creepy”. Let them know if it happens that it isn’t their fault and they should tell the teacher, Mum or Dad, or any other adult that they trust. Overcome the stigma of talking about this subject. Let the children know that they can tell Mum, Dad or teacher if someone is “bad touching” them. Believe them and investigate.

I hope you find these tips usefull. If your interested in Choi Kwang Do classes for your child, family member or yourself and are in the Bristol or Trowbridge area then please go to my web site at http://www.CKDBristol.co.uk for more information on our Choi Kwang Do classes that are great for teaching you self defence, self-confidence and also keeping you fit and healthy no matter your age.  We offer 2 FREE lessons to all who sign up via the web site.

If you don’t live in my area and are interested in Choi Kwang Do then please visit http://www.ChoiKwangDo.com where you can find the nearest location to you.  Most of the classes offer some sort of free lessons so please take a look.

Regards

Dale Miller

Master Instructor of Choi Kwang Do.

UPDATED: 6 tips to MAXIMISE your punching power

Choi Kwang Do punches can be extremely powerful even for a beginner with limited technique.  Being able to hit with power is an essential component of your self defence skills, no matter your size, as the harder you can hit, the better your chance of creating a situation where you can get out of a fight and flee safely, or even knocking the person out.  With that in mind then here are a few good tips to improve your overall punching power.

  1. Get your stance right. Your stance should be shoulder distance apart. Too narrow and you restrict your hip movement and minimise the effect on power it has and you lose balance easier. Too far apart and you restrict your leg and hip movement taking about 60% of your maximum potential power away. Your knees should be slightly bent.
  2. Your body weight should start off slightly more on your rear leg than your front leg. About a 60/40 weight distribution. A big part of creating huge impact power with your punches is to transfer your body weight (mass) into the target. If your weight is at 50/50 you won’t be able to push off as well to get your body weight into the punch.
  3. Maximise your “follow through” by trying to punch through the target, not stopping or pulling back on impact.  Make sure your body weight is now on your front foot and you are leaning in slightly so that all your mass is behind the Punch. The best metaphor to describe the last two points is to imagine pushing a car. You wouldn’t be totally upright with your body weight 50/50 on each leg as you would get nowhere fast.
  4. The most important tip is also the hardest for a lot of people trying to punch hard, and that is to RELAX. A tense body restricts the speed of your movements. You need to be nice, relaxed and loose to maximise power. A good psychological tip is when you are trying to hit as hard as you can, tell yourself you are going to try and hit at 85 to 90 % power. Studies have shown in athletes that if they try and give their full 100% power then they tend to tense up and reduce their power, and when they hold back a little bit they have more power.
  5. Get your distance right. If you are too close to the target for the punch you are using, you will hit with your arm still bent, or you won’t have enough room to drive your body into the technique. This seriously reduces your power. If you are too far away you will hit at the point where the power is tailing off and your impact will diminish.
  6. Final tip. work on your technique. By using the correct sequential motion (sequence of movements) starting at the foot, driving the thigh and hip forward, rotating the trunk after and letting your arm lag behind the body a little, creating a plyometric stretch, before rotating the shoulder and punching you will have a great technique where each sequence in the movement chain multiplies and adds to the force you generate. The best way to really get a technique absorbed into your muscle memory is to perform it slowly and purposefully. We too often learn a technique and want to hit hard and fast straight away and that doesn’t allow your nervous system to fully absorb the correct movement patterns.

For those of you who prefer to see your tips in video format, i’ve recorded a short video to demonstrate some of these tips.

UPDATE:  I managed to track down some of the old Choi Kwang Do information that Grandmaster Choi used in developing the punching power in Choi Kwang Do.  This information came from studies based on Russian boxers who were trying to maximise their punching power.  Of the punch, only 12.24% of the power comes from the arm.  37.42% of the power comes through the hip and torso twisting and FINALLY 38.46% of the power comes from your legs pushing off and transfering weight from the rear foot to the front.

You can see this information in the following video clip from 1minute 15 seconds in.

 

I hope you enjoy these 5 training tips.  If your interested in Choi Kwang Do classes for your child, family member or yourself and are in the Bristol or Trowbridge area then please go to my web site at http://www.CKDBristol.co.uk for more information on our Choi Kwang Do classes that are great for teaching you self defence, self-confidence and also keeping you fit and healthy no matter your age.  We offer 2 FREE lessons to all who sign up via the web site.

If you don’t live in my area and are interested in Choi Kwang Do then please visit http://www.ChoiKwangDo.com where you can find the nearest location to you.  Most of the classes offer some sort of free lessons so please take a look.

Regards

Dale Miller

Master Instructor of Choi Kwang Do.