Want Hard Kicks?
Out of all the great kicks I have ever witnessed, and this includes all my practice in Karate, Taekwondo and Kenpo, the ones Ted launched were the best. This was back a ways, back in the last century, and training methods were just becoming known. And the things we did were often extreme, to say the least.
We often didn’t have hanging bags, so we would kick mailboxes and telephone poles and whatever else came to foot. The crucial item to this, however, was good form, and the number of times you threw a foot while practicing. I tell you the truth when I say that how much you practiced was the key to it all.
Ted was known for throwing lots of kicks. Most of the budding kenpoka would throw a dozen kicks each side, not all the kicks, and consider that they were breaking a sweat, so they must have really worked out. Do you understand?
Ted would saunter into the dojo a couple of hours before class and begin work. He would start with yoga, do a full regimen of stretching, and then he would start his work out. Two hundred kicks for each side for each particular kick.
I know what you’re thinking, they were only airkicks, right? Nada. He would start with air, move into bag work, and by the end of his workout he was really pounding those bozos.
Most important was his attention to detail. He was obsessed with his hips being just right, the arc of his foot being perfect, and the shape of his foot upon impact. He was a perfectionist, to say the least.
One day he was driving home, got behind somebody sleeping at a stoplight, and he tooted his horn. This big, huge, monster got out of the car and stomped back towards Ted. Ted stepped out, raised his hands for peace (a perfect ready position in the martial arts), and tried to move back.
The monster drew back a gnarly fist and started to punch. Ted launched a rather perfect and speedy wheel kick to the chest. The bully sat down on the asphalt and stared up in shock.
“I don’t want to do this, man!” But the bully got up and charged. Ted executed a perfectly arced, full hipped, ball of foot wheel kick to the man’s chest.
The fellow collapsed to the ground, and Ted got into his Ford and drove off. And the message here is pretty easy to get. No matter which art you do, Karate, Kenpo or Taekwondo or whatever, pay attention to detail, and practice like you mean it.