Basic Kicks You Should Know if You Are a Beginner in Sparring
Are you thinking about starting sparring in Taekwondo, or have you just begun this new adventure? Learning how to spar can be both a scary and exciting activity. One of the things you can do to help you feel more prepared is make sure you have a good knowledge of what kicks you can use so you can start experimenting and learning. Below, I’ve listed 5 Basic Kicks You Should Know When You Start Taekwondo Sparring, and some tips to help them be more efficient.
1. Round House Kick
The Roundhouse Kick is one of the first kicks you learn in Taekwondo. The best thing about this kick is, you can use it in so many different ways that can surprise your opponent. A couple of the ways you can vary using this kick are, sliding in before throwing it, switching stances then kicking, throwing it long-distance, throwing it short-distance, using your front leg to throw it, and more. One thing to remember, is to make sure you turn your hips all the way when you are executing it so you can have the best reach & power. If you want to see a couple of different ways of throwing it, I have some examples on this video.
2. Cut Kick
If you haven’t heard of a ‘cut kick,’ it is essentially a Front Leg Side Kick. Watch any Black Belt sparring match, and I guarantee you’ll see both opponents throw at least one during a round. Cut kicks are a great way of controlling distance, setting up kicks, and keeping your opponent away. When you’re doing a cut kick, make sure your hands stay in control and ready to cover so that you don’t leave your body open and points scored against you.
3. Axe Kick
Axe Kicks are awesome to use, and if you score a headshot, you get 3 points with an axe kick. You can do this kick directly to start a combination as most people will move back when they see it coming, or you can use it to follow up after other kicks. I filmed a whole entire video on 10 Different Ways to do Axe Kicks if you feel like experimenting! 🙂
4. Back Kick
This might be the hardest kick of all the beginner sparring kicks that I’m mentioning, but it’s a strong kick, and you should definitely start practicing using it. If you score a back kick to the body, you earn 3 points. If you score it to the head, you get 5 points. Besides the huge points opportunity, it’s also such a strong kick that will intimidate your opponent if you land one on them. Some tips about back kicks are to make sure you don’t over-rotate when you’re spinning as that will make your kick weaker and you will struggle to be accurate. Keep your knee in tight while you are spinning, and extend all the way to use your max power.
5. Padachagi = Defense Round House Kick
A padachagui is a defense roundhouse kick. There are two ways of doing it, you can either slide back and then kick, or slide back and kick at the same time. When you’re doing a padachagi, make sure you rotate your hips all the way around so you can have a strong technique and so that you can score if you are using electronic gear. It’s a great kick to learn for beginning defense as it’s simple, but effective.
There are so many variations of the kicks listed above and a lot more kicks as well. The ones I’ve mentioned are great to start with! Experiment and see what works best for you, find out your strengths and weaknesses, and work on both!
Need more drills? Make sure you check out my Pro Sparring Drill Workouts with drills, exercises, and tips to help you get higher kicks.
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