Dynamic Breaking

Breaking should be a test of one’s favourite and most realistic techniques. A test of confidence, speed, power and focus. The speed break is a break that’s accomplished by sheer speed and precision of technique through a board that’s suspended at one end.

You spin right through the target keeping the knee of your supporting leg bent. Typical speed breaks include spinning back fist, spinning knife hand and spinning hook kick. Blindfolded breaks require a high degree of concentration and kicking skill.

It also requires a great deal of practice. You have to be familiar with your kick in order to place it on your target with enough speed and power to break it. Start first by hitting a soft pad or hanging bag with your eyes closed. As your speed and accuracy increase, along with your confidence, you can graduate to using a blindfold.

Aerial breaks, as the name implies, are breaks performed in the air. Like the blindfold breaks, they also require a great deal of practice and concentration. In practicing these techniques you build up a great deal of speed, as well as accuracy.

When breaking more than one target in the air you must learn to kick at two different targets accurately and with enough power in each kick to break your targets. Your co-ordination is also greatly enhanced, as you have to use both feet effectively.

There are other breaking techniques even more flamboyant and difficult to perform. The more difficult the break, the greater the likelihood of a mistake and possible injury.

The aim of this article is to provide practical guidelines for successful breaking. It is in no way intended to take the place of a competent instructor. Regardless of your other martial art skills, when learning how to break, always do so under the direction of a qualified instructor.

Caution and common sense should be your first consideration, not how spectacular a break appears to be. It may also be necessary to toughen the parts of your body that you wish to break with, especially if you intend to break more than one board.

You can toughen or condition your forefist by performing the techniques against a bag or by using a forging post or makiwara. By conditioning these striking parts you will be able to hit harder, and with more effect, while eliminating the risk of injury.

Finally the art of breaking should be the ultimate demonstration of the martial arts demanding a great deal of confidence in his or her abilities. Train regularly and you will find that breaking will greatly enhance your present abilities, and offer you new challenges for which to reach for in the future.

Article by GM Creedon, ITF Union

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