How to train kicks?
I know that practice makes perfect and the more I kick the better I'll get. One of my fellow students told me that when he started out he'd do a 1000 kicks ( i don't know if he did it with each leg or both legs total) so I was wondering if its a good idea? Is overworking a problem? I'm willing to train until I'm on the verge of fainting. Also how do you guys train outside of class. I'm trying to get good at TKD because I'm a white belt (with a stripe..) in a class of all black belts. The classes are age sorted.
And the teacher (he doesn't teach my class allot... the black belts usually help me and organize their own classes. but when he does teach everyone is dying by the end of the class) is a 70 something old korean guy who I can barely understand because of his accent. He seems legit. Does this happen in any of your classes?
Sorry for two questions instead of one. Thanks!
Practicing kicks without striking anything is good for getting used to them, but I would advise you to refrain from kicking too hard. Otherwise, you may get injured, as you have nowhere to displace the force that you exerted into the kick other than your leg (I'm not sure how to put this in a better way, but hopefully you get the point, eh?). Plus, throwing kicks at an actual target is better for getting used to kicking.
I've injured my knee by throwing snap-roundhouse kicks in the air full-force without anywhere to hit (swinging kicks like the full-round kick are okay).
Since you're a beginner at taekwondo, if you have an old firm bed, you could just kick the side of it to get the feeling for your kicks (but make sure there's no hard metal parts in the bed first). If you have atleast 50 dollars in cash, then try getting a free-standing heavy bag. If not, you could get a used one for 20-30 dollars on craigslist (as always, beware of scams and suspicious sellers).
Afterwards, you could move on to a sand-filled heavy bag if your shins/insteps are amply hardened.
Also remember to stretch properly before. I wouldn't recommend kicking 1000x times in one go, as you would probably eventually lose proper form, and doing kicks w/o proper form doesn't really help. I would recommend sets of full-strength, fast (but accurate) kicks (ie. 5 x 30) to a bag.
If you want faster kicks, just practice kicking fast with less strength on a bag (but in reasonable sets, not in sets of 300 or some other ridiculously high number). If you want stronger kicks, train less kicks with full-force. Also, I would recommend training your quadriceps, calves, and other leg muscles at the gym.
You shouldn't need extra help outside of what your teacher says (if he's a decent teacher). However, if you do need some tips, kwonkicker (on youtube- check out http://www.youtube.com/user/kwonkicker) has some good tutorials.
And if you want better kicks, you need sufficient muscle, so a high-protein diet is recommended.
That's what worked for me, but it may not work for you. When training on hard targets (sand filled heavy bags) don't overtrain and injure your shins/instep by not giving yourself enough time to recuperate.
That's all I can think of right now- good luck.
Why don't you count how many kicks you can do before you start to feel fatigue? Then you can try improving from there. Getting better at your own pace is far more satisfying and less dangerous than trying to beat what may be an impossible goal (not to say you aren't good but a thousand a day seems a bit too much if you are making contact with anything when executing these moves)!
Originally Posted by european ninja
That and you take in mind the fact that people burn out. Training six days a week is hardcore, but will you be willing, both physically and mentally to continue this for years to come?
I know my style field says boxing but I used to be a WTF 4th kyu prior to the transition and I can still throw a good 540 last time I checked :)
MaverickZ made a good post explaining the stages of learning a kick. I'll try and find it for you when I get some time.
Hah, wanted to post the sames question. Good thread!
I would recommend that, if you want to train TKD style kicks, you find yourself a copy of The Complete Master's Kick written by Hee Il Cho. He very nicely outlines not only kicking techniques, but also the correct weightlifting and stretching exercises that will help you develop pretty much all of the basic TKD kicks.
1000 kicks seem a little excessive for a beginner. You don't want to over work yourself to the point you can't train at your best the next day. Plus you don't want to get burned out.
Kick till your kicks suck. then, get in front stance and push up with front leg-kick-and snap it back into place until your wobbly. then, knee ups untill you give up on life. wouldn't worry just yet on the more advanced exercises