How to do Side Push Kick
Side push kick is a very powerful and effective kick and is taught next to rim kick. It’s the last kick of the white belt in Ninjutsu.
Side push kick is the modification of side kick in which the body steps / jumps forward instead of twisting, so that the front leg is used to perform a powerful kick, usually to hit an opponent at some distance.
Performing the simple steps of side push kick is simple if you’ve successfully mastered and perfected the sidekick and the rim kick. However it has it’s own dynamics and minor things which are to be practiced and perfected to have the maximum efficiency and power from this kick.
How to perform a Side Push kick
Initially the student is taught to execute the side push kick with a step. Once that’s perfected and the student moves to senior belts, he’s supposed to perform the kick as a jump / snap kick instead of a step kick.
Note that the jump sidepush kick don’t mean that the fighers both feet are in air when he hits the target, rather it means that the time spent in steps changing is done with a snap / jump movement to reduce time required for the kick and to generate the momentum giving more power to the side push kick.
Follow these steps to perform a side push kick with stepping:
- It’s important to note that throughout the kick the body keeps facing towards the same side. The body doesn’t swing from right to left or so on during the stepping part of the side push kick.
- From the stance position, the practitioner steps forwards in a way that his rear foot goes behind the front foot and reaches ahead.
- From this legs crossed condition and while having the body facing towards the same side, the kick is picked up upto the position which we have in side kick.
- Then the kick is executed towards the target almost same as it’s done in simple side kick.
- The kick don’t end there, once it hits the target the kick folds back and comes back in the same fashion. The foot lands in front of the balancing leg and then the leg goes back to its original stance position
- Note that when starting the kick the fighter don’t lift the front foot up (a common mistake by new students)
- When the kick hits the target, the arms are in the same position as that of a side kick. The hand with the striking leg is straight with it but slightly away from the leg. The other hands fist protects the face but with a slight distance so that any powerful blow don’t jerk the hand to hit the face, injuring your own face your fist.
- Tip: While hitting, when the kick strikes the target, experienced users can “push” more by bringing weight on the supporting legs heel and pushing further.
Exercises to improve Rim kick
Rim kick needs the practitioner to focus on two parts, one the stepping, and second the kicking part.
The stepping part improves with each next step. So as much as you practice, your stepping will get better and better and ultimately reach to snapping movement (or jump which some might say).
Before practicing rim kick the round house kick has to be perfected so that the stretching of the fighter is upto the level and the stay of the kick too, so that he can reach the kick to the face of the opponent easily and with power ofcourse.
The balance has to be improved along with the power of the kick, and that can only be achieved by regular practice of the kick.
Targets for Rim Kick
Rim kick has mostly the same targets as roundhouse kick. It can hit both the front and back of the opponents body.
Some of the targets which rim kick can hit effectively are:
- Head and neck from behind
- Side of head or neck
- Chest and abdomen
Blocks for Rim kick
The most effective block for step kicks is to step aside. Yes step aside, not step back. Step back and step front and other techniques are very useful too and the best technique to use against a rim kick attack depends upon the exact situation and the capabilities of both the attacker and the blocker.
Some of the most effective blocks for rim kick are:
- Stepping aside, either right or left stepping and avoiding the kick are helpful. However, which way to move, depends on your exact location with respect to the attacker and your, kick and attackers body’s line.
- Stepping back is always useful when you’re confident that your stepping back will take you out of the range of the attacker from rim kick (and better if away from the next kick too)
- Stepping in to the attacker. This will stop him from executing the kick and might stop him at the step level only, which is not a stable position and from here you can either throw him or attack him as per your convenience and the situation.
- Block like roundhouse kick, with either both the hand’s palms or one opposite palm and the same forearm technique.
- Gripping the kick with block.
- Rim kick can be countered with a sweep kick.
Combinations of Rim kick
Rim kick being a step kick can be used in any combinations to get closer or into the target. It’s useful after the kick in which the target moves away abit like front kick so that the attacker can get closer to the target.
Possibilities to use this kick are numerous; some of the rim kick combos can be as follows:
- Front kick, rim kick, side push kick
- Front kick, roundhouse kick, rim kick
- Roundhouse kick, back kick, rim kick
- Rim kick, back kick
Practice is the key to good fighting technique. It’s important to not just remember the techniques and combinations but also practice them over and over again to make them your reflex.