Kicks and Super Human Strength
It feels silly to even write about
this, yet the myth that kicking someone in the groin will give
him super human strength is still perpetuated by various sources.
I can see a basis for this line of thought, inaccurate as I
believe it to be. Looking to understand the thinking that leads
people to make these statements and theories, I find there is
usually (though not always) some logical thought process behind
this, Personally I have used snap kicks to the groins of attackers
in real fights with remarkable success. I have also been on
the receiving end of more than one groin kick and have found
it to be quite an effective target, sometimes much to my chagrin.?
One personal source of this misinformation
is a Police Officer who trains Swat Teams Self Defense by hard
sparring in the conventional martial arts manner. Since sparring
is done as a mutually agreed upon training exercise (symmetrical
vs. asymmetrical), the participants should and do learn how
to protect the groin area. Whether the groin is deemed an acceptable
target or not, male students tend to naturally protect their
groin in this type of training. When discussing the groin as
a target, this Police Officer was emphatic about his inability
to deliver a strike to the groin in his training sessions. His
officers were able to protect their groin very effectively while
sparring. I know I certainly did in my days of sparring.
However, sparring is quite different
from real fighting. Even heavy sparring employs a degree of
conscious thought process and physical dexterity that is simply
not available in the full adrenal rush. I have seen many a skilled
technical fighter stand flat on their feet and throw ineffective
haymaker punches in real street encounters. Many of these incidents
end up in a clinch with both fighters standing squared off trying
to get leverage over the other. To the aware fighter it is often
a simple task to throw a front kick or a knee into the groin
of their opponent. It sure has worked for me, sometimes to my
amazement as my foe dropped like a sack of potatoes from a relatively
light force strike. The groin can be a very effective target.
Hardcore no-holds barred fighting contests do not allow full
contact strikes to the groin for this very reason.
There is a woman who owns a martial
arts school in Colorado. This woman emphatically tells her students
to never kick a man in the groin. She sites examples where women
have been severely beaten after attempting ineffectual strikes
to the groin. This is akin to saying never fight back, which
law enforcement agents used to say and have now totally reversed
their stance. I would imagine some poorly trained women and
men in the past have had this negative experience. But the overwhelming
evidence is that the groin is an excellent target.
My third source is from a friend
who grew up in New York City. It seems he feels the stigma of
growing up in 'The City' is that he’s supposed to be rough and
tough. The stories of his exploits are elaborate and in my book
unrealistic reports of flying spin kicks and other highly technical
techniques that he’s supposedly used in real fights. Always
taking his accounts with a grain of salt, the clincher came
when we were sharing experiences one evening. He was visibly
offended when I mentioned having used groin kicks in real fights.
This was apparently outside his code of ethical fighting, and
he said as much. I remember being amazed by this coming from
someone who supposedly was such a fighter. Inner-city survival
would be pretty rough under such a code.
My sense is that he learned much
more about street fighting from watching movies and hearing
the many embellished stories than actual fighting on the streets.
In other words, my good buddy likes to "tell stories" to some
My stance is that there is no
such thing as a 'bad' target if the defender strikes with conviction
and power. There may be better targets than others. But when
it comes to the male groin, no manner of conditioning or weight
training can make this area impervious to strikes while under
Written by Bill Kipp - President,
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