Rants, Ramblings and Nothingness

A messy collection of random stuff really!!

Toes Conditioning

In karate, almost every part of your body is important. If you rigorously train a part of your body, it might developed into an effective weapon. It’s including your toes!! In our Goju-Ryu style(IOGKF), the toes are very important for your stances, specially for sanchin stance. In sanchin stance, the whole body must be connected to the ground, and the precursor to this is the toes. The toes must grip the ground so the foot can function like a suction to provide stability and connectivity to the whole body.

This small detail is very often forgotten which results bad rooting in stances. But very often small details actually helps to advance further in training. Conditioning the toes is very important since gripping using your toes is not a natural thing for human. Exercises like warming up the toes before training, scaling the dojo floor using your toes, using tetsu-geta(iron clog) helps a lot.

By conditioning, the gripping ability, flexibility, strength and stamina of the toes increased. From here, it provides the basic for the further advancement, utilizing the conditioned toes to be an offensive weapon. Nowadays the practice of kicking in modern karate using toe-kicks has been replaced by kicking using the ball of the foot for safety reason and the ease of use. Some styles still preserved this technique, but the majority of practitioner aren’t practicing it anymore or do not even aware that this technique exist.

In my opinion, toe kick is one of the most effective kick technique. Bare-footed, if the toes are conditioned, kicks can be delivered to the floating ribs, back of the knee or groin. With shoes on, it is very effective to areas such as shin bone, knee cap, and groin. It is very snappy, and the target area is low, so it is not difficult to execute it. For me, it is an efficient technique and definitely worth the sweat!

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February 18, 2008 - Posted by | Goju-Ryu, Karate, Martial Arts | , , ,

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