Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Which Side Do You Lead With?

I love how Bob Orlando covers the topics of controversy, and he does so here in "Train Both Sides Equally or Strong Side Forward?" In this case, it's whether to be ambidextrous in fighting stance. It seems to depend on the fighter. For me, from practical, ring experience, it seems you need a base defensive position from which to build your fighting style. I've seen fighters who switch up a lot in point fighting, but not often in full contact or kickboxing. The problem is not with when you are fresh, or when you have the initiative, but when you are tired or hurt. Mainly, that you can get stuck between one stance or another, and are wide open.

I realize that our JKD readers may opine that the strong-side lead is the best, because then your lead-hand and foot techniques, which are closest to the opponent, and therefore a shorter distance to the target, will be faster AND more powerful. When I first started in Karate, I used my strong-side forward, but when I learned to box, then fight Muay Thai, I switched to having my strong side in the rear. I prefer the strong side in the rear, because it's actually very successful as a surprise lead or a knockout punch in a combination. My front hand and leg are surprisingly powerful, and thus tend to catch people by surprise. Read Sensei Mr. Orlando's article, then come back and comment.
Updated: Bob Orlando has requested that we not use titles, and we respect his wish. A humble man...

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