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#336793 - 10/23/05 07:24 PM leg strengthening
buggaluggs Offline

Registered: 10/23/05
Posts: 3
at the moment i use weights to increase my leg strength, it has worked slightly, im wondering does any1 no of any drills that can increase me leg power and height

#336794 - 10/23/05 09:36 PM Re: leg strengthening [Re: buggaluggs]
goju_girl Offline

Registered: 10/19/05
Posts: 101
Loc: Canada eh!
Hey there buggaluggs,
well I'm not really an expert or anything, but over the summer I did some leg work at my dojo, and alot of the techniques seemed to be bagua based (i.e. "walking")

Walking eh? Doesn't sound too tough right? Well try walking like this:
shrink yourself into neiko-ashi dachi stance, bring your back leg up (do not rise from your low stance) and as your leg comes up breathe in/bring your arms to about chest high, step down to a LOW zencoutzi-dachi and push/breathe out with your arms, and then repeat with the opposite leg. Do this VERY slowly.

Another one that I learned is very simple and only requires you to look like a total idiot if you were to ever do it in public. It should work your calves. go up on the tip-toes of one foot, then slowly lower yourself (but so your heel doesn't quite touch the floor) and walk while doing that so it would go: up-down right foot, step up-down left foot, ect. Both of these can be done with ankle weights if need be. I hope these help/you could understand what I'm saying! Good luck, and have fun
New hieghts are achieved once you have the courage to leave the ground

#336795 - 10/23/05 10:54 PM Re: leg strengthening [Re: buggaluggs]
ShaolinNinja Offline
hates silicone bubishi

Registered: 10/09/05
Posts: 301
Loc: Ireland
Do I know any leg strengthening drills? It seems like my whole life is leg strengthening drills! In Shaolin kung fu there's an abundance of gruelling leg strengthening methods, of which the staple is the horse stance:

Horse stance - Start by standing with your feet together. Turn your ankles to spread your toes as far apart as you can, with the heels together. Now, pivoting on the toes, bring your heels out as far beyond that as they'll go. Now bring your toes in line with your heels so the feet point forward. (The above is an overworked way of saying stand with your feet about two-and-a-half shoulder widths apart.) Now move your knees outwards towards your toes and drop your upper body. It's very important to keep the back straight (that's the hard part), knees out and feet pointing forward. It's an easy stance to execute; the difficulty is in holding it for extended periods of time. Hold this stance until it really hurts, then hold it some more. Don't worry if your legs start to shake; that actually makes it work better. It's more effective the lower you go and the further you spread your feet. Some pictures of a good horse stance here. Your arms are free, so you can use the time to practise your punching or whatever. Staring at a single point and controlling your breathing will help focus your mind, so you'll be better able to hold the stance through the pain. This technique strengthens pretty much the whole leg. (This is how the kung fu masters of old used to force students to hold the pose!)

Duckwalk - Stand like you do for the standard hip flexor lunge stretch: one leg forward and bent at a right angle, the other leg far behind with the knee just off the ground. (See here.) Now, without your upper body coming up, walk into the same stance with the other foot leading. Walk around like this for maybe 20m to start with. You head and chest should never move vertically.

Squats - Stand with your legs spread and bend your knees so you sink down. Now: up, down, up, down, up, down....

One-legged squats (aka pistols) - These are a great workout, but difficult for beginners. Stand on one leg. Bend the knee so you go down, then come back up. Stick out the other leg for balance, but never let it touch the ground. Don't expect to be able to get your ass to the ground at first, but that's what you're aiming for.
The world's a will to power and nothing besides

#336796 - 10/23/05 11:36 PM Re: leg strengthening [Re: buggaluggs]
cplbaigle Offline

Registered: 02/20/05
Posts: 2
Loc: Orlando,Fl,United states

If you really want to train with weights to build strenght a good trick to do is do 3 sets of about 80 percent of your max an an weight meachine and only do 6-8 reps and the do 1 set with light weights to build not only strength but endurance with out gaining any muscle mass

#336797 - 10/25/05 07:23 AM Re: leg strengthening [Re: ShaolinNinja]
wynnema Offline

Registered: 02/02/05
Posts: 82
Loc: Preston
horse stance is useless for building functional leg strength. Better to do wide stance deep squats. You want a dynamic exercise not a static one.

#336798 - 12/25/05 07:12 PM Re: leg strengthening [Re: wynnema]
burby Offline

Registered: 12/25/05
Posts: 8
Loc: England >East Anglia
This is what we learn in class
>to increase strength in high kicks, stand with your left hand on a wall, your left foot toes pointed towards the wall, with your right leg do a side kick (away from the wall) someone raises your leg as high as it will comfortably go, brace yourself on the wall and push down with bout 60% of your strength for 15 seconds, the person lowers your leg, and slowly raises it back up, your leg should go an inch or two higher, and you have exercised the muscle group for high kicking. Repeat, then do the other side, and then try front kick etc

>The same thing applies if you put your foot on a surface, say a worktop, and push down, it is just difficult to find somthing of a ideal height to put the foot on, and might not be ideal for cold stretching/conditioning

#336799 - 12/25/05 11:18 PM Re: leg strengthening [Re: burby]
MikeMartial Offline

Registered: 12/18/03
Posts: 767
Loc: Alberta, Canada
First off, this thread would be better off in the stregnthening forum.....if this forum had a mod. Anyways...

That's just isometric stretching. It won't significantly strengthen your leg muscles.

What the other's said is sound advice.

While hamstrings and quads are involved in kicking, do not forget the hip flexors and adductors; these muscles are specific to raising the knee and turning the hips.
"You do not truly know someone until you fight them." - Seraph, The Matrix Reloaded

#336800 - 12/30/05 09:51 AM Re: leg strengthening [Re: MikeMartial]
Supremor Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/22/04
Posts: 2510
Loc: UK
I hold my leg out to the side and front and hold it for about 15-20 seconds. I don't lean against anything since I think it is important to work your balance as well. I also do slow kicks and pistons, which are great, but not a good idea if you have knee problems.

In my opinion, leg strength in the martial arts, is most importantly a case of having strength in your technique. This can only come about by specifically training technique. Specificity is the key to strong kicks. If you want good kicks, strengthen your leg for the actions which you do in the kick- for example practicing the end positions of your kicks. Just remember, there's no point having strong legs, if you do not have the balance to use them.

#336801 - 12/31/05 10:03 AM Re: leg strengthening [Re: Supremor]
burby Offline

Registered: 12/25/05
Posts: 8
Loc: England >East Anglia
good point! if you are in a fight there is no point flooring one guy with a kick, falling over as a result and having his mate sit on your head
26> Though there may be gorgeous sights to see, he stays at ease in his own home. --lao tzu--

#336802 - 01/10/06 10:16 AM Re: leg strengthening [Re: buggaluggs]
HK_Box Offline

Registered: 01/10/06
Posts: 2
I am not a fan of weights and they can build up the wrong muscles actually restricting some movements. By weights I mean gym machines etc.
I done Martial Arts since 7, when 16 my teacher started training me to do kicks underwater. The resistance is natural. It builds up all the relevant muscles and keeps posture. When out of water my legs felt so loose and free. I could kick higher, had twice the power - and the speed was amazing. Realise you may not have a pool, but its easy to do. When next training on the kick bag strap sand bags to your shins. You can actually buy them, the heavy weight is hard at first and your legs will ache - like when you started. Soon they will build up and you will forget you have them on. When you release the bags - You will be able to kick higher, faster and harder. Start with a low weight, take it off, use nothing for weeks and note the height, then go back to weight and kick to the new height, back again etc.
Punches work the same. underwater or with resistance - resistance is the key - not 'weight'.

Speed, height & power. Plus technique and practice is retained.

horse stance, squats etc is basic strength and conditioning. This is the next step. careful though the new speed and power is highly dangerous when going to a normal class.

Eventually have weight and round house kick to the face against a speed ball. Doing this builds back muscle and hip etc all the correct muscles as your kicking - just with resistance.


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