Roundhouse vs front/side kick

Decker

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Hi all.

I was just wondering if the roundhouse kick was perhaps inherently weaker than the front or side kick due to the mechanics of the movement.

Here's the story:
I recently bought a heavy bag (rough estimate 30 kg/66lb), but have yet to install the ceiling bracket, so I place it on a stool while practising. I've found my front kicks and side kicks fully able to knock the bag off the stool, but my roundhouse kicks barely faze it. I have to try really hard before it reluctantly topples off the stool. (I use my instep, and used my hip as much as I could)

Thus I'm wondering if it's just the technique's inherent traits, my own flawed technique, or just lack of proper practice in that move.

Thanks very much.
 

JWLuiza

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Try pivoting the support foot, using the ball of the foot, and follow through.

You are probably correct in that the force from a round kick isn't as much as a side kick or front kick.
 

Fiendlover

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yeah i hav a bag too and my side kicks and front kicks knock it over my roundhouse havent. but i notice that everytime i practice its stating to shake the bag more violently (my bag is VERY heavy not as heavy as it should it need more sand in the bottom) but i think that if its not working by pivoting ur support foot and moving ur hips forward that it just needs more practice.

but im sure front and side kicks r more powerful tho roundhouse is my favorite.
 

Laurentkd

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Those kicks have different types of power. If your goal is to simply knock the bag over then front and side kick will do that easily because you are able to really PUSH through with the kick. However, pushing really doesn't equal power. A punch to the gut may not really move you but it will do a lot more damage than someone just shoving you in the stomach pushing you back several feet. Look instead to see if you can get the bag to fold in with your roundhouse kick. That tells you that you are kicking through the target with force and that is probably what you are looking for.
 

Marginal

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Hi all.

I was just wondering if the roundhouse kick was perhaps inherently weaker than the front or side kick due to the mechanics of the movement.

Here's the story:
I recently bought a heavy bag (rough estimate 30 kg/66lb), but have yet to install the ceiling bracket, so I place it on a stool while practising. I've found my front kicks and side kicks fully able to knock the bag off the stool, but my roundhouse kicks barely faze it. I have to try really hard before it reluctantly topples off the stool. (I use my instep, and used my hip as much as I could)

Thus I'm wondering if it's just the technique's inherent traits, my own flawed technique, or just lack of proper practice in that move.
If you look at the front kick, it's largely intended to be a pushing kick. The side kick too (depending on how fast you retract the kick, the quicker you pull it back, the less pushing and more penetrating it'll do). The roundhouse kick's not really designed for pushing/displacement, which is partly why I think you're not knocking the bag off the stool.

That said, weaker is a hard term to apply here though. You won't break as much wood with a roundhouse kick vs the other two, but given what you're supposed to be targeting with a roundhouse kick, it's still more than capable of disabling an attacker etc. It mainly boils down to what you want to accomplish with the kick, and which kick's the best tool for that job.

You can get a roundhouse kick to displace though. You have to angle it down and put your weight into it. (Instead of throwing the kick straight across, think of tracing more of an upside down U with full extension coming right after the top of the curve.) You can make a heavybag jump with that variation.
 

thardey

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You can get a roundhouse kick to displace though. You have to angle it down and put your weight into it. (Instead of throwing the kick straight across, think of tracing more of an upside down U with full extension coming right after the top of the curve.) You can make a heavybag jump with that variation.

The hardest I've ever been kicked was with that kick. We were holding forearm shields and I got hit with one of those full power. It was the first kick, and we weren't expecting that much force. I couldn't feel my fingers for about 3 minutes.

But it wouldn't have knocked over a bag. That's just momentum, which doesn't cause damage, only movement. We're looking to transfer kinetic energy.

Like Laurentkd said, try to "dent" or "fold" the bag, rather than move it. That's the type of power you're looking for. You'll find it's easier to dent the bag with a round kick, than a side kick. Which of course brings up the question: Which kick is more powerful?

Speed is the key.
 

Marginal

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The hardest I've ever been kicked was with that kick. We were holding forearm shields and I got hit with one of those full power. It was the first kick, and we weren't expecting that much force. I couldn't feel my fingers for about 3 minutes.

But it wouldn't have knocked over a bag. That's just momentum, which doesn't cause damage, only movement. We're looking to transfer kinetic energy.
If you leave the kick out and keep leaning into it once you make contact, it will move the bag. Doubt it'd knock a person around, but it'll certainly knock over a 100lb heavy bag set on a stool.
 

Touch Of Death

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Hi all.

I was just wondering if the roundhouse kick was perhaps inherently weaker than the front or side kick due to the mechanics of the movement.

Here's the story:
I recently bought a heavy bag (rough estimate 30 kg/66lb), but have yet to install the ceiling bracket, so I place it on a stool while practising. I've found my front kicks and side kicks fully able to knock the bag off the stool, but my roundhouse kicks barely faze it. I have to try really hard before it reluctantly topples off the stool. (I use my instep, and used my hip as much as I could)

Thus I'm wondering if it's just the technique's inherent traits, my own flawed technique, or just lack of proper practice in that move.

Thanks very much.
It is weaker but usefull when you need to go around somthing.
Sean
 

terryl965

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Fornt kicks and side kick can use all the person power and wieght, a roundhouse uses only about 60-70% of the person actual wieght. But this can be a powerful kick if all the mechanics are right.
 

IcemanSK

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Those kicks have different types of power. If your goal is to simply knock the bag over then front and side kick will do that easily because you are able to really PUSH through with the kick. However, pushing really doesn't equal power. A punch to the gut may not really move you but it will do a lot more damage than someone just shoving you in the stomach pushing you back several feet. Look instead to see if you can get the bag to fold in with your roundhouse kick. That tells you that you are kicking through the target with force and that is probably what you are looking for.

I think you've hit on a good point, Lauren. It can easily look as if more damage has been done to a bag due to pushing through the bag with a side or front kick. It's less likely that one will push the bag as they hit with a roundhouse. Throwing body weight forward is important in a roundhouse, but momentum of the correctly positioned leg has a lot to do with the force generated.
 

foot2face

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Maybe it just me, but I always found the roundhouse to be more powerful than a front kick and about even with a side kick.
A roundhouse can be thrown as a circular kick and as a linier kick. When thrown as a circular kick you follow through the target completing an arch. Its very easy to deliver a powerful kick with this method because it make full use of the angular momentum created by rotating into the kick as circular strikes are much more forgiving with regards to a less than optimal point of impact. The linier kick variant is the basic TKD roundhouse that is often first taught. One chambers their rear leg, pivots on the ball of their front foot rotating into the target as they snap out the kicking leg. The kick delivers its force straight into the target and terminates shortly after impact. Once the kick is executed the kicking leg is retracted and the original position is recovered. This kick can be just as powerful the other method (some believe even more so) but since it terminates and doesnt follow through in an arch it can fall just short of optimal impact and end up as a hard slap rather than the devastating power shot it could be. The problem is that the kick is usually thrown at the target and not into it. This is a common mistake when executing this kick. When throwing this kick aim with your knee a few inches behind the surface of the target ( so if you kicking with your right leg aim your chambered knee just to the right of the center of the bag) ensuring that the kick extends well into the target and doesnt stop just after making contact with the surface.
 

wade

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Apples and oranges. The front and side kicks are power displacing push type kicks while the round kick is a snapping penetration speed kick. With the side and front you use the whole body to create the power. A round kick only uses the leg from the knee down and when used with a snapping focus can create a lot of power. Different targets, different results. Not the same kind of power, but power just the same.
 

YoungMan

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Side kick is the strongest, followed, I think, by roundhouse and then front kick. Side kick is strongest by virtue of the fact it uses the strongest muscles and largest muscle groups in the body. Also because the alignment of the heel through the abdomen and glutes. The heel is the strongest part of the foot.
The roundhouse and front kick are weaker because of the muscle groups they use, and because they use parts of foot that are not as strong. They can still do damage, just not on the scale of a side kick.
I would say the front is the weakest of the three, due to the muscle groups and the part of the foot used.
But what do I know?
 

Dave Leverich

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I think Wade hit it as accurately as it could be told. Different types of kicks for different applications. Different kinds of 'power'.
 

thardey

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Side kick is the strongest, followed, I think, by roundhouse and then front kick. Side kick is strongest by virtue of the fact it uses the strongest muscles and largest muscle groups in the body. Also because the alignment of the heel through the abdomen and glutes. The heel is the strongest part of the foot.
The roundhouse and front kick are weaker because of the muscle groups they use, and because they use parts of foot that are not as strong. They can still do damage, just not on the scale of a side kick.
I would say the front is the weakest of the three, due to the muscle groups and the part of the foot used.
But what do I know?

You're right, of course, but "strong" is not the same as "powerful."

Power can be much more subjective. Aikido can be very powerful, but use less strength.
 

Empty Hands

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With the side and front you use the whole body to create the power. A round kick only uses the leg from the knee down and when used with a snapping focus can create a lot of power.

No, you can still do it with your whole body. Rotate your support leg, and open up your hips and put them into it too.
 

igillman

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Wing Chun uses the concept of a centreline. They say that the punches they throw are stronger because they pass along the centreline between the two opposing people.

The side kick and the front kick can be used as a positional kick to move someone out of close range due to the kicks centreline motion allowing us to put our bodyweight behind it. Then you can whack 'em with the roundhouse :D
 

Kacey

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Apples and oranges. The front and side kicks are power displacing push type kicks while the round kick is a snapping penetration speed kick. With the side and front you use the whole body to create the power. A round kick only uses the leg from the knee down and when used with a snapping focus can create a lot of power. Different targets, different results. Not the same kind of power, but power just the same.

Wade has, I think, accurately described the technical differences in the kicks. To add on to his statement of "different targets, different results", remember that turning kick (roundhouse kick) can be used for targets that are not appropriate for front and side kick - and that don't need power to be effective. If I hit you with a turning kick to your temple, for example, I don't need nearly as much power to drop you as if I side kick you to the abdomen... but then, the same could be said for a front kick to the jaw, too!

Power is nice, but it's not the only issue - focus (the ability to place the tool on the target at the desired force) is equally important, as is knowledge of which techniques work best on which targets.
 

TaeKwonDoKevin

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Here are my thoughts on it.
There are only 2 different ways to throw a roundhouse kick (that I know of)....But I have learned at least 3 different ways of executing different side kicks and frontkicks.
Examples - Side Thrust, Side snap, side piercing. Believe it or not, different instructors teach the kicks differently, I mean completely different.
1 way I learned is, the side kick comes up like a front snap kick then as it is extending out, it rolls over (I personally do not teach it this way).
Front kicks can be front snap, or front thrust(pushing).
So, that being said, it would also depend on which side kick, which front kick, and which round kick you are using.

And I do agree with most of the other replys.
So there are MANY factors that should be taking into consideration with comparison of kicks. It's not always just a 1 kick is stronger than the other thing.

Just my opinions.
-Kevin
 
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