Thursday, October 30, 2008

Starting over

Tonight in class, we worked on a few things. We had our basic warm up, run by Father A (I just learned about his vocation this evening. Very delightful person, wicked tough opponent!). Master G drilled us on straight punches (and I NEED to use my Korean for this!!), high blocks, then outside inside and inside/outside blocks. We worked on back kicks for our main drill with the focus pads.
Now, back kicks are not one of my strongest kicks. Master G explained to us that we could think of the kick as either a single kick, as in a straight leg back kick (think 'donkey kick'), or in 3 parts...turn, raise your leg and kick straight back and recoil, then turn again.

When you think of the kick that way, it's incredible to see where you need work. I was fortunate enough to team up with Ms. M tonight. I tell you, I want to be her when I grow up! She's got some incredible power in her kicks! She also lands her kicks very well. My kicks? Well, let's just say, I found another thing I have to work on!

We did six on either leg...three part kicks. Turn, kick, turn. If you think about the focus pad in terms of a clock, you really want to try to hit the pad between 5 and 7. Ideally you'd like to hit at 6. Any higher on the clock and you'll hit more with the side of your foot. Another thing you need to work on is turning your head and looking at your target. You will not hit your target if you do not look at it. If you blindly kick, your opponent will be able to move out of your way and you will not hit them.

After he ran us through the first drill, he changed it up again. The second drill was a double kick. You kick, then recoiled and kicked again. The purpose of the drill was to first and foremost, work on your balance. The second thing was to help us re-train ourselves out of the bad habits we have picked up in our years of training. The new guys in class are luckier than most. They're not picking up the bad habits some of us already have.

We also worked on Ho Sin Sul tonight. Ms. M and I worked on 1, 2 and 3. 1 is a same side grab. The defender needs to flare the hand, twist, step back with the opposite foot (i.e.-if you're grabbed by the left hand, you flare your hand and twist your wrist, step back with your right foot and sink down into it, then you do a front leg side kick. As a black belt, I need to tap my opponent if I'm training.
If I'm out in the real world, trying to defend myself, I would kick pretty darned hard and try to disable my opponent. The key here is not to 'flap'...but to keep your elbows close to your body.

The second Ho Sin Sul was a double wrist grab. As you're being grabbed, you flare your hands out again, bring your hands up and on the outside of the attacker's hands, then you forcibly push your opponent's hands out. As you do that, you perform a front snap kick to the midsection. The key to this is also to keep your elbows close to your body.

The third one is a cross-hand grab. Step out (outside the attacker's body), turn your hand and look at your palm--this forces the attacker's wrist to be turned at a 90 degree angle. At this angle, you can do a palm-heel strike to the attacker's wrist, and then do a back arm elbow in to the ribs.

Sparring was the last thing on the agenda. We kept the same partners as for the kicking drills and Ho Sin Sul. When sparring, think double strikes. If you kick, immediately throw another kick or a punch. This is a distraction technique. It's a lot easier to think this way than to think "I need to, um, throw a kick. Now what do I do?"

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