Strong Defense Always Wins
Well for the most part.
At least we saw that was the case this weekend, if any of you happened to watch the big Manny vs. Mayweather fight.
In today’s age of MMA and competitive fighting, we forget that arts like Muay Thai evolved from the battlefields…strategy and training were not just for self-defense…but literally the difference between life and death.
Hence, the philosophy..seek first not to get hurt…Then hurt someone else!
Anyway…getting back to defense…This fundamental Muay Thai technique is a way to evade the straight punch and return with your own KO elbow… all at once.
- The ability to do this quickly and effectively starts from standing on the balls of the feet first…meaning the toes planted on the floor…the weight on the balls of the feet (nuggets)
- The key is to angle off the centerline….(the centerline is the line of danger where all strikes are thrown between you and an opponent) and cut through like a ‘razor tooth fish’ …the literal translation
- The power comes from continuously coiling the body and unloading a strike…coiling the body…the unloading the strike…that coil winds the body up like a spring..waiting to strike!
- The Elbow is Thrown moving forward against the Jab…just off the centerline….unlike that jab angle which you really step out at an angle (much safer), this requires you to step forward into the target (much more painful). In both cases, notice how we’re using our FEET to move our head off the centerline to counter.
- Not moving both feet for each step forward – The goal is to keep ‘digging’ into the face of the opposition. You can’t move forward too much without lifting both feet first =)
- Bending at the Knees – This sends the weight of the hips down…instead of up through the hips and shoulders and into the target
- Not torqueing the shoulders and hips at the point of contact….this causes the torso to be unstable…and leads to us ‘bleeding torque’ out the hips and shoulders at the point of contact…we want that energy to go through the target..not get absorbed by our joints!
- Not stepping forward with the back foot …for each strike…you step forward with both feet…
I hope this helps. Mastering this Muay Thai technique opens up a world of opportunities….instead of being stuck in one foot position (orthodox stance or southpaw), it creates infinite opportunities for developing new combinations and strikes as well.