Blocking Kicks.

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johnnybravo
12/13/07 11:44:41AM
I’ve been training Muay Thai for about 3-4 months now (originally into boxing) but I have had some issues with checking kicks.

I find it a lot less painful to take a kick to the leg as it just goes numb (difficulty walking for the next week tho). But when I try and check (lifting leg with toes pointing up and away from me) it is bloody sore on the shin to the point I feel like its going to break.
My shin doesn't hurt when throwing a kick that is checked and I don’t see anyone else having issues with this in training which leads me to think it may just be a technique issue.

Has anyone else had this problem? Or is it just something that gets better with time?
loonytnt
12/13/07 1:15:28PM
the more you do it the better it will feel
cmill21
12/13/07 1:34:09PM
Drink more milk. It's never going to feel great, you are being kicked in the leg, it's just not nearly as painful as taking it in the thigh.
postman
12/13/07 3:40:13PM
I try to check them with my knee but if it gets on the shin I kick off turning him and opening a nice follow up punch.

I should have pointed out that I meant the lower part of the kenn or uper shin.
Omega
12/13/07 4:41:08PM
a. Condition your shins more.
b. use a rotating leg block
c. rotata taking it and using a leg block
d. Wear shin guards
e. Learn counter kicking.
bayonetxwork
12/13/07 6:29:22PM
It takes time man. A lot of thai gyms have very hard bags to kick, this in turn helps to deaden the nerves around your shin area. Do it right, check the kick, and man up now. In the long run, when you start competing against guys that can drop you with leg kicks, you'll be happy that you don't feel kick so much on the shins.

Oh BTW, sometimes you can get lucky when you check, and hurt them.
johnnybravo
12/13/07 7:10:21PM
Cheers guys. Looks like I should stop being such a pussy and start kicking some concrete pillars. Deaden the old legs a bit.
Mastodon2
12/13/07 7:29:47PM
Its always gonna hurt until you get your technique perfect.

I trust you are doing it like this;

1. As you see the kick coming, rotate your foot (at this point facing toward your opponent) outwards 90 degrees. Do this at ground level. If you do it with your leg raised its too slow and you won't block properly. At this point, your shin should be facing outwards toward the incoming kick.

2. lift the leg to the height of the incoming kick

3. Heres the important bit. You want to take the kick on the shin, but not mid shin or whatever, you want to block it with the very top of the shin, right below the head bulb of the shin bone. If you take it square on the knee you could well get knocked off balance. There is also a chance the kick could sail right over and into your gut. Your foot should be at about 90 degrees to your shin bone, or an even smaller angle. Dont point your toes towards the ground, it seems to destabalise the block. It's gonna hurt at first, espescially when kicked by a bare shin. Still the solidarity of the femur will absorb some of the impact, and the shin bone is much thicker and stronger at the top. If you check it cleanly, your opponent will most likely hurt his shin, unless he has uber grizzled shins from years of conditioning.

4. return your leg to the ready stance and unload with a counter if he looks hurt.

Whatever you do, dont...

1. Rotate the shin in mid air, its too slow
2. point your toes down
3. take the shot in the middle of the shin, unless you absolutely have to. Taking a shot in the middle of the shin is better than taking one fully in the thigh, but still not ideal. Unfortunately, a lot of MMA guys think the middle of the shin is the way to do it, or they just don't have the technique drilled well enough to block properly.

Unfortunately for MMA fighters, who often don't focus on Muay Thai in too much depth their block is often poor. This is due to two things; not focusing enough on the block in training, and the fact that MMA fighters often have a weak, slow and telegraphed leg kick compared to a full time Nak Muay. This is not the fault of the fighter or their coaches. As I often say, MMA strikers would not fare well against full time strikers simply because MMA fighters have so much on their plate, that super focused Muay Thai training is not nesscary to do well, hence there is more focus on being well rounded. Because MMA fighters usually only come up against poor low kicks, a sloppy technique can be employed to deal with them, hence there is never any real drive to perfect the technique.

In short, don't copy your favourite MMA fighters block, copy a real Nak Muays. Thai boxers spend hour after hour giving and blocking low kicks. Learn from the masters.


Sorry if it's a bit of an essay, the low kick is something I'm espescially picky about, because I love it so much. I'm a real Lumberjack like Peter Aerts when it comes to low kicks, and it really disgusts me when I see them being done s badly (Jardine I'm looking at you!) and its even worse when they are crap, but not being blocked properly (Liddell!). Sure, a sloppy, telehraphed low kick still hurts when it connects, but really work them, you will be able to avoid them and block them more effectively, and always remember; a low kick with good form from a weaker man will always be more effective than sloppy one thrown by a really strong guy!

EDIT: WARNING - do not be fooled by shin conditioning methods that dont involve kicking Thai pads or the heavy bag. Kicking metal bars, concrete pillars, bins, slapping wet towels on your shins, caning them, rolling glas bottles on them etc may well deaden the nerves, but you won't build up strong bones and they will just snap easier in a fight. Heavy bagging and Thai Padding is the way to go, it takes longer than destroying the nerves with a cane or something, but it strengthens the bone properly and there is another HUGE bonus to it; it lets you gets hours of focused practice on your form and technique!
cmill21
12/13/07 8:04:49PM
I would give you props if I didn't have to spread the love.
Rush
12/13/07 11:42:04PM

Posted by Mastodon2

nd it really disgusts me when I see them being done s badly (Jardine I'm looking at you!) and its even worse when they are crap, but not being blocked properly (Liddell!).




Considering that most MMA guys do not appear to know how to do a proper single leg take down or defend against one, it doesn't surprise me one bit.
jomatty
12/14/07 5:29:10AM
too funny i just got the same message, guess the two of us like what mastadon has to say lol.
johnnybravo
12/14/07 8:14:48AM
Thanks Mastodon2,
Very good Instructional on blocking the low kick. Best bit of advice I've had.


“In short, don't copy your favourite MMA fighters block, copy a real Nak Muays. Thai boxers spend hour after hour giving and blocking low kicks. Learn from the masters.”


I’m actually really into Muay Thai at the moment, and have no intention of starting any sort of MMA training or Jui Jitsu until I can give a good account of myself in a Muay Thai fight.

But I’ll definitely put your advice to use when I’m next down the Gym.


“EDIT: WARNING - do not be fooled by shin conditioning methods that dont involve kicking Thai pads or the heavy bag. Kicking metal bars, concrete pillars, bins, slapping wet towels on your shins, caning them, rolling glas bottles on them etc may well deaden the nerves, but you won't build up strong bones and they will just snap easier in a fight. Heavy bagging and Thai Padding is the way to go, it takes longer than destroying the nerves with a cane or something, but it strengthens the bone properly and there is another HUGE bonus to it; it lets you gets hours of focused practice on your form and technique!”


I’ve just put the glass bottles away!:
saemskin
12/14/07 9:41:36AM
so how did it take before you could whack away at the bottom of a heavy bag?
3 solid kicks and I'm limping the rest of the day.
Thus I usually try to kick higher up where the stuffing is looser so I can get more shots in.
You guys watch Urijah Faber training during the pre fight hype the other day? That guy is an animal he was throwing something like 10 high kicks in a row, and rather quickly at that....
Omega
12/14/07 4:53:05PM

Posted by saemskin

so how did it take before you could whack away at the bottom of a heavy bag?
3 solid kicks and I'm limping the rest of the day.
Thus I usually try to kick higher up where the stuffing is looser so I can get more shots in.
You guys watch Urijah Faber training during the pre fight hype the other day? That guy is an animal he was throwing something like 10 high kicks in a row, and rather quickly at that....



Well you're doing the right thing now. The idea is to build up to the bottom of the bag. I have my guys do sets of 25 on both sides every practice. If they can handle it they kick the oldest and hardest of the bags near the very bottom.
905010
12/14/07 5:39:55PM
Taking one on the shin is alot better than on the thigh. I don't know if anyone else conditions there thighs to take kciks but that helps alot too if you can't check it.. If your about to fight you want to condition your shins but for sparing just wear shin pads so you don't have to worry about it. Also you could try catching the kick or duck under it and kick to there standing leg if ther kick is high enough.
Omega
12/14/07 5:57:57PM

Posted by 905010

Taking one on the shin is alot better than on the thigh. I don't know if anyone else conditions there thighs to take kciks but that helps alot too if you can't check it.. If your about to fight you want to condition your shins but for sparing just wear shin pads so you don't have to worry about it. Also you could try catching the kick or duck under it and kick to there standing leg if ther kick is high enough.




Duck under it?????

Um, I think we're talking about two different things here.


BTW I'll take it on the leg if I want to blast up the middle. I usually choose the middle when my opponent is not stepping off the line.
905010
12/14/07 6:23:07PM

Posted by Omega


Posted by 905010

Taking one on the shin is alot better than on the thigh. I don't know if anyone else conditions there thighs to take kciks but that helps alot too if you can't check it.. If your about to fight you want to condition your shins but for sparing just wear shin pads so you don't have to worry about it. Also you could try catching the kick or duck under it and kick to there standing leg if ther kick is high enough.




Duck under it?????

Um, I think we're talking about two different things here.


BTW I'll take it on the leg if I want to blast up the middle. I usually choose the middle when my opponent is not stepping off the line.



Yeh If the guy throws a kick high enough you can duck under and away from his power band and hit his standing leg, while letting the kick slide up your back.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NolEdsQznTE

This is avideo to show you what i mean
cmill21
12/14/07 6:53:48PM

Posted by 905010


Posted by Omega


Posted by 905010

Taking one on the shin is alot better than on the thigh. I don't know if anyone else conditions there thighs to take kciks but that helps alot too if you can't check it.. If your about to fight you want to condition your shins but for sparing just wear shin pads so you don't have to worry about it. Also you could try catching the kick or duck under it and kick to there standing leg if ther kick is high enough.




Duck under it?????

Um, I think we're talking about two different things here.


BTW I'll take it on the leg if I want to blast up the middle. I usually choose the middle when my opponent is not stepping off the line.



Yeh If the guy throws a kick high enough you can duck under and away from his power band and hit his standing leg, while letting the kick slide up your back.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NolEdsQznTE

This is avideo to show you what i mean



We're talking about checking kicks though, leg kicks.
905010
12/14/07 6:55:40PM
ok, i was just mentioning ways to defend against other kicks.
Mastodon2
12/14/07 7:25:16PM
Ducking under a high kick is not the best plan unless you know your opponent has a long "reload" time to get to his ready position again, he may well reload quickly and knee you in the face, or feint you and then punch or knee you.

I will write a tutorial on how to really throw a good leg kick. There are some decent vids on youtube, but at the same time there are some really bad ones. I think may need some photos to explain the finer points of how to do it well...but I'll I try and get some resources together and give it a shot. Your low kick is potentially your greatest weapon, but for so many fighters its their own worst enemy, as they do it so bad it leaves them open for any number of counters.
905010
12/14/07 7:56:21PM
I can't argue your points, unless you have a good grasp on how to throw the kick effectivly it probaby won't work for you, but generally if you are going to there standing leg you don't do it half ass. If connect with the right power and right accuracy you will knock them down almost everytime. You only do it if you really profect the kick, if you go the wrong way on accident you are gonna catch a shin in the face. But, if you perfect the kick enough it can be extremly usefull because people will not want to kick high at you. There is a Muay thai fighter who is like 5'3 or 4, he mastered the kick and no one tries to kick him above his waste.
Omega
12/14/07 9:51:03PM

Posted by Mastodon2

Ducking under a high kick is not the best plan unless you know your opponent has a long "reload" time to get to his ready position again, he may well reload quickly and knee you in the face, or feint you and then punch or knee you.

I will write a tutorial on how to really throw a good leg kick. There are some decent vids on youtube, but at the same time there are some really bad ones. I think may need some photos to explain the finer points of how to do it well...but I'll I try and get some resources together and give it a shot. Your low kick is potentially your greatest weapon, but for so many fighters its their own worst enemy, as they do it so bad it leaves them open for any number of counters.



Well I'd be interested on how it compares to the way I coach my guys since my kicks really are a hybrid Sanda/Muay Thai. So far though I fully agree with your advice.



Posted by 905010

I can't argue your points, unless you have a good grasp on how to throw the kick effectivly it probaby won't work for you, but generally if you are going to there standing leg you don't do it half ass. If connect with the right power and right accuracy you will knock them down almost everytime. You only do it if you really profect the kick, if you go the wrong way on accident you are gonna catch a shin in the face. But, if you perfect the kick enough it can be extremly usefull because people will not want to kick high at you. There is a Muay thai fighter who is like 5'3 or 4, he mastered the kick and no one tries to kick him above his waste.



Um yeah, guys I'll use that kick counter on low kicks too. Don't misread this please. I will use that kick counter on kicks to the legs they don't have to be to the head.
The_Ho_Bag
12/14/07 10:31:50PM
i have the same issues b/c i kickbox like they said angle ur leg out wards w/ ur toes down not up b/c u might break your toes sounds weird but true
jiujitsufreak74
12/14/07 10:39:02PM

Posted by The_Ho_Bag

i have the same issues b/c i kickbox like they said angle ur leg out wards w/ ur toes down not up b/c u might break your toes sounds weird but true



lol Ho_Bag you forgot to mention that by keeping your toes pointed down your foot and leg are one solid unit and there is a significantly less chance of breaking your ankle than if you had your toes pointed up which would allow the ankle to move on impact. The King would be disappointed (me and The_Ho_Bag go to the same kick boxing gym so it is an inside joke)
cmill21
12/14/07 10:56:49PM

Posted by jiujitsufreak74


Posted by The_Ho_Bag

i have the same issues b/c i kickbox like they said angle ur leg out wards w/ ur toes down not up b/c u might break your toes sounds weird but true



lol Ho_Bag you forgot to mention that by keeping your toes pointed down your foot and leg are one solid unit and there is a significantly less chance of breaking your ankle than if you had your toes pointed up which would allow the ankle to move on impact. The King would be disappointed (me and The_Ho_Bag go to the same kick boxing gym so it is an inside joke)



Lol I was going to say that made no sense to me.
The_Ho_Bag
12/14/07 10:59:30PM
very true bro not gunna lie =]
Rush
12/15/07 11:15:50AM

Posted by Mastodon2


I will write a tutorial on how to really throw a good leg kick.



Somebody is reading their prop comments. lol


A tutorial would be great man.
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