Kicks can be a major focus of your training or an area you only touch on once in a while. Regardless, it is an aspect of combat that deserves study even if you only wish to defend against them. A word of warning: kicks are time consuming. If you really want to be able to utilise them in sparring and self defense rather than just looking good on the pads, you need to be prepared to dedicate a lot of training time to them at the expense of other areas.

Here are 5 tips to developing great kicks that work:

Start low – kicking to the head looks impressive but for practical success, start by developing solid leg kicks.

Tactics – you need to know when to kick. Set up your kicks rather than just throwing them out there.

Range – develop a keen sense of the correct range for each kick & only use it when you can get or are given it.

Power – focus on developing your power ahead of your speed. A good kick will only need to be landed once or twice to have an effect.

Partnered Practise – prioritise training kicks with a partner and movement over a static bag or target to gain the ability to land kicks out of motion.