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  1. #1

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    blocking leg kicks, toes Up or Down?

    By leg kick, I mean slamming your shin bone into the opponent's thigh. By blocking a leg kick, I mean your opponent tries to slam his shin into your thigh, and you raise your knee to block that kick with your shin. I have recently noticed two different schools of thought on blocking leg kicks, as to what direction your blocking leg's toes should be pointed in.

    One school of thought is that your toes should be pointed down towards the floor. This was the belief I was raised with, and I have assumed anything else was sloppy technique. Example of blocking with the toes down:


    The other school of thought is that instead your toes should be pulled up so that your foot at about a 90 degree angle with your leg. I recently worked out with a Muay Thai sympathizer who had very convincing arguments for blocking leg kicks this way. Example of blocking with the toes up:


    Questions -

    Q1: Which is better?

    Q2: Why is that one better?

    Q3: Historically, why are there two different ways of doing this? Is this an ongoing debate within Muay Thai gyms in Thailand? Is this a this a some-other-type-of-kickboxing (san shou, savate, kyokushin, etc.) vs Muay Thai difference? What?

  2. #2
    gregaquaman's Avatar
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    Feet flexed or pointed.

    Your foot doesn't really block a kick it just presents a taget. I smash your pointed foot or toes with my shin. You are going to have a bad day. So I am for feet flexed.
    Whitsunday Martial Arts Airlie Beach North Queensland.
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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by gregaquaman View Post
    Feet flexed or pointed.

    Your foot doesn't really block a kick it just presents a target. I smash your pointed foot or toes with my shin. You are going to have a bad day. So I am for feet flexed.
    So for clarification, you prefer what I referred to as "toes up". The top of the foot is indeed a sensitive target. One vote for toes up.

  4. #4

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    Justifications for toes up:
    1. it creates more solid resistance, harder to kick through
    2. it protects your foot.

    Justification for toes down:
    1. It is a "softer" block, doing less damage to your shin as you allow your shin to "roll with" the kick:


    ?

    Or is that not an advantage, because you can angle your kick through the block and hit the supporting non-blocking leg?

  5. #5
    Permalost's Avatar
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    The muscle on the lateral side of the Shin tense when you flex your foot "up", providing more protection for the shin, so I vote "toes up". The foot shouldn't be a target in either case. IMO the foot position isn't nearly as important as the relative body positions and angles of everything else.

  6. #6
    Bneterasedmynam's Avatar
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    I will go toes up on this one. Pointing them down just seems like an accident waiting to happen.

    Just out of curiosity what is the consensus on leg position during the check?? Basically to Weidman or not to Weidman??

  7. #7
    ermghoti's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BFGalbraith View Post
    That's an Expert Village video, and therefore I am dismissing it as total garbage without having seen it.
    "Systema, which means, 'the system'..."

    Quote Originally Posted by strikistanian View Post
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    Raycetpfl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ermghoti View Post
    That's an Expert Village video, and therefore I am dismissing it as total garbage without having seen it.
    It's not horrible, but that isn't the worst policy to have.

  9. #9
    Cake of Doom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Permalost View Post
    The muscle on the lateral side of the Shin tense when you flex your foot "up", providing more protection for the shin, so I vote "toes up". The foot shouldn't be a target in either case. IMO the foot position isn't nearly as important as the relative body positions and angles of everything else.
    This is my reasoning for "toes up" over "toes down". The last thing I'd want is bone on bone (lol) contact; especially if the kick was fired full force.
    Train hard, fight easy.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Permalost View Post
    The muscle on the lateral side of the Shin tense when you flex your foot "up", providing more protection for the shin, so I vote "toes up". The foot shouldn't be a target in either case. IMO the foot position isn't nearly as important as the relative body positions and angles of everything else.
    This sounds like what he MT person I was working out with was trying to get at. Thanks for the specifics.

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