Kickboxing is a sport that is somewhat similar to boxing but allows the use of kicks. This simple change creates many more variables and changes the way a fighter must fight. Kicks can be very devastating, but also tend to be slower than punches. Many of the world’s best kickboxers can deliver lightning fast kicks, and this is how they become the top fighters in their weight class. Your kickboxing drills should stress speed and timing along with raw power. Even if power must be sacrificed, you should always strive for well-timed kicks that actually land on target. A very strong kick that is blocked wastes your energy, inflicts little damage, and scores no points with the judges. Fast kicks that hit their target do a lot of damage even if there is not much power behind the kick. Also, the judges score based on the number of landed strikes, not how strong you are.
Your kickboxing drills should have specific targets that you can kick at full speed. The use of a training partner and pads is the best way to improve your accuracy while boosting your speed. When in a match your opponent will have a certain timing to his movements. It is important to learn how to read the timing of an opponent and throw your kicks at the best moments. Using a punching bag does not help you learn to kick at the right moment, but using a human partner does. Your partner should move like he would in a real match and use arm or hand mounted pads to absorb your kicks. These pads serve as targets for you to hit, and your partner will essentially be a dynamic punching bag that actually reacts like a human would.
Your training partner can also feign strikes at you. This helps you learn to time your attacks along with your blocks and dodges. As your training partner throws a punch you can duck it and then respond with a kick or punch. The goal is to land the strike before his punching arm has time to get back to block. Your training partner should then either absorb your strike with his other arm’s pad, or wear a full body pad to absorb strikes that come too quickly for him. This kickboxing drill helps you learn how to react to an opponent and his timing rather than just learning your blocking and striking separately. In a real match, striking and blocked are interwoven, not separate. Your eventual goal should be that your partner will have to wear full body pads because his hands cannot keep up with your strikes.
Yoshi E Kundagawa is a freelance journalist. He covers the mixed martial arts industry. For a free report on kickboxing drills visit his blog.
Yoshi Kundagawa is a freelance journalist covering the martial arts world. Too much time at his computer eating donuts reduced him to couch potato status. He's on a quest to recapture his youth and fitness. You can read his blog at http://www.martialarts3000.com