I mean, the eye gouge is "on the way" but 1) it doesn't sound like your motive is to take the guy's eye out, you're going for a clinch. So doesn’t sound like you're committed to really jam that thumb to the back of the socket. Without that kind of mentality, just don't do it. 2) its still a small target to hit even if its along the way. Now blinding BOTH eyes would be a different story in my opinion....Maybe trying to rip the guy's ear off might be nice though?

I see what you’re saying. I agree too. If my objective is to go “knuckle deep”, lol, I’m going to have that as my main priority and probably use that more as an opportunity to create space even, and not so much to clinch.

Besides, if you don’t get in quickly and establish good position, you run the risk of your clinch entry being countered by a more experienced wrestler. Part of the danger here actually lies in the manner in which you enter as well. Many people reach way too much without a good sense of timing or an appropriate set-up as well. I never like reaching away from my body too much (quick punching notwithstanding) unless its as a counter movement. When I clinch, I am moving my entire body into close range.


John, I don't kick too often either. Most of my training is devoted to my hands (southern Kungfu right?) and I only end up using kicks if I tend to kickbox with another person. I don't like it because we're hitting each other like we're looking for points but I don't train for sport so I'm hardly in that arena where we're just tagging each other.

I tend to train out of an MMA context, though not really for “sport”, as it were. Thus sparring is a huge part of our training process. Sparring for us is often quite hard at times. Clinching and takedowns are allowed, so I’ve learned (as do my partners) about kicking. It’s not that difficult to catch the leg kicks and hit a quick takedown. Against the other types of kicks, its easy to avoid and close the distance and obtain the clinch (if the kicks aren’t set up well).

The thing about kicking is, if you’re going to train them for self-defense, you should train them within an MMA context which allows for takedowns and ground work. Folks would then learn how to throw them and set them up in such a context. This isn’t often the case, particularly within TKD where there is often, very little truly effective punching, very little effective clinch and ground.


That said, I keep my kicks low and something like a groin kick appeals to me just because if you land the hit the pay out is 10x more effort than you put in. Other than that theres not much kicking.

Do you use kicks to the groin in sparring? If so, what kind of cup are you wearing bro?


oh Chokes are lovely. I would definitely go for a choke, as long as I'm not on the ground or in a vulnerable position. So if I was to choke someone out, I'd be on my feet. Bent over or standing straight, I'll be on my feet.

Depending on the situation, I actually prefer to use a choke from the ground because I can better control my opponent there. However, in a street fight (which I never am involved in by the way), I’d not always commit myself to such an attack. It would completely depend on circumstances.