Is ball of the foot roundhouse outdated with modern shoes?

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InfiniteLoop

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I use ball of the foot, shin, and instep depending on what I am trying to accomplish and who I am hitting. I have used all 3 in sparring safely but definitely have to be more aware of my opponent with the ball of the foot to make sure they don't move into it and get hurt. As far as kicking with shoes; I have also kicked heavy bags, bob, trees ( I get bored when I'm outside with my kid and start kicking random things, its an odd quirk but oh well) with the ball of the foot and found that most athletic sneakers are fine. They usually have an inclined sole at the toe making it pretty easy to hit with the ball of the foot or they are such firm rubber that even if you hit with your toes it doesn't really hurt. However, this does not work with flip-flops and sandals (owch!). I would say if you want to know how well it works just start kicking something.

Did you kick bare feet in sparring with be ball of the foot and how did it feel? Did you generate solid power?
 

dvcochran

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Anatomically, you are axially loading the 1st metatarsal in a roundhouse kick in which you pull the toes back and strike with the ball of the foot. If striking with the instep or top of foot, it would be transverse loading the 1st metatarsal, as well as maybe the navicular bone.
I would argue that because of the right angle nature foot portion in a ball of the ball of the foot kick, it would be the transverse load. But really both because both strike perpendicular to the leg in regards to length (rod).
If you consider the leg the rod an axial kick would come from a side kick or a flat footed front kick where the load is on the bottom of the foot.
 
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I would argue that because of the right angle nature foot portion in a ball of the ball of the foot kick, it would be the transverse load. But really both because both strike perpendicular to the leg in regards to length (rod).
If you consider the leg the rod an axial kick would come from a side kick or a flat footed front kick where the load is on the bottom of the foot.

The reason I believe most people don't use ball of the foot in fast paced sparring is because it needs to be thrown horizontally to make any sense, wheras the instep can travel any angle.
 

dvcochran

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The reason I believe most people don't use ball of the foot in sparring is because it needs to be thrown horizontally to make any sense, wheras the instep can spring from any angle
Not correct. See my previous post about how I used the ball of the foot. Believe me, it works very well.
 
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Not correct. See my previous post about how I used the ball of the foot. Believe me, it works very well.

Anything can be made to work, but if you throw the ball of the foot 45 degree, it's more a front kick dynamic to it and toes are in danger.
 

Minkia

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Here's a crazy idea... maybe you should kick something with it?
How effective it will be in use varies from one person to another. Kicking air is fine, as far as it goes, but you should also be kicking actual things.
I must have been taught wrong. Or perhaps it was my own misunderstanding that's to blame, however I thought a roundhouse was more a follow through using utilizing the top of the foot. Which is greatly disappointing because I was awarded my black belt, for Okinawan Goju. Smh.
 

SahBumNimRush

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I would argue that because of the right angle nature foot portion in a ball of the ball of the foot kick, it would be the transverse load. But really both because both strike perpendicular to the leg in regards to length (rod).
If you consider the leg the rod an axial kick would come from a side kick or a flat footed front kick where the load is on the bottom of the foot.
I understand what you are saying, but the axial loading of the bony surface of impact is what I am referring to. The metatarsals are long bones ( meaning a hollow shaft) you are, effectively striking with the metatarsal head (not the shaft), which by definition is axially loading the 1 metatarsal.
 

JowGaWolf

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Haha!!! Tell that to an experienced KKW fighter.
I'm not a Tkd person but I don't have problems kicking with the ball of my foot. I'm confused with where the issues exists. I originally learned how to kick with the heel, but distance and my opponent's body position determines if I kick with the ball of my foot..

I also use it in sparring a lot. This tread is confusing.
 

brian k

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I have a new found love for ball of the foot as the dollyo chagi kicking tool and I'm curious If you guys think its too artificial when wearing modern shoes?


It looks pretty violent to me... I'm sure it would hurt?

 
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I'm not a Tkd person but I don't have problems kicking with the ball of my foot. I'm confused with where the issues exists. I originally learned how to kick with the heel, but distance and my opponent's body position determines if I kick with the ball of my foot..

I also use it in sparring a lot. This tread is confusing.

Depends on the sparring rules, tactics, pace, level of opposition, if you always are in a position to throw horizontal round kicks
 

AIKIKENJITSU

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I have a new found love for ball of the foot as the dollyo chagi kicking tool and I'm curious If you guys think its too artificial when wearing modern shoes?


It looks pretty violent to me... I'm sure it would hurt?

Here's a crazy idea... maybe you should kick something with it?
How effective it will be in use varies from one person to another. Kicking air is fine, as far as it goes, but you should also be kicking actual things.
I have trained and taught for fifty years and we have always used shoes. I think the ball of the foot is in the past, where people used to walk barefooted. The front tip of the shoe is a great argument stopper. I've used the upward instep to strike the groin.
Sifu
Puyallup, WA
 

Bill Mattocks

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The reason I believe most people don't use ball of the foot in fast paced sparring is because it needs to be thrown horizontally to make any sense, wheras the instep can travel any angle.
I beg your pardon once more, but that is not correct. The Isshinryu mae geri is thrown vertically, specifically as a vertical kick. It's intended target is the groin, and it is intended as a penetrating kick. This is done with the ball of the foot.

I realize that you have a preconceived notion about what the ball of the foot can be used for and an agenda, but with respect, you are wrong.
 

Bill Mattocks

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I'm not a Tkd person but I don't have problems kicking with the ball of my foot. I'm confused with where the issues exists. I originally learned how to kick with the heel, but distance and my opponent's body position determines if I kick with the ball of my foot..

I also use it in sparring a lot. This tread is confusing.
We use the front kick with heel as a push kick (mae konate). The ball of the foot is a penetrating kick. The may look similar to casual observation.
 

Bill Mattocks

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I have trained and taught for fifty years and we have always used shoes. I think the ball of the foot is in the past, where people used to walk barefooted. The front tip of the shoe is a great argument stopper. I've used the upward instep to strike the groin.
Sifu
Puyallup, WA
If you train to strike with the ball of the foot, a shoe will still work.
 

SahBumNimRush

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I have to say, this has been a lively expression of how everyone uses or doesn't use their foot, in relation to a roundhouse kick. I think the general consensus seems to be, "if you train it properly, and understand where and how to execute it, either striking surface has merits."

Personally, we spar with the instep (for the roundhouse, it's still the ball for front kicks, and the heel for back and side kicks). We NEVER break with the instep; we always break with the ball of the foot on roundhouse kicks. I have always assumed it was due to the ball of the foot being stronger and a more resilient striking surface than the instep.
 

Kung Fu Wang

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There is a good reason that the roundhouse kick is also called "whip kick". If you also train foot sweep, you will appreciate the instep contact point. By using instep, you can perform

- shin bite,
- scoop,
- scoop kick,
- sticky kick,
- foot sweep,
- whip kick.

So you can only use the ball of your foot to do one thing. But you can use your instep to do many things.

 
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