Teaching Strikes

Tsuki Waza – Punching Technique.

Uchi Waza – Striking Technique.

As a general rule, strikes are easier to learn than blocks.  However, it is important to point out that strikes carry a higher risk of injuring oneself.  This is because one is deliberately causing an impact between a part of one’s body and a target.  It is important to pay attention to the details to avoid injury.  Self defense begins with good technique.

When viewing the video on teaching blocks, watch for the following strategies:

  1. Introducing one detail at a time, then giving at least eight repetitions to practice before moving on to the next detail.
  2. Show and tell – explain what the target is for each strike and show how the hand will make contact.
  3. Doing technique with the student, followed by the student doing technique solo, followed by the student hitting a target.

[Insert Video Here]

Instructional Sequence

Seiken Tsuki

  • Start with left hand out right hand in chamber. Do two – just moving hands – no details.
  • Add detail: palm up until halfway out. Demo: “Push me away.” Do six to ten reps.
  • Add detail: elbow slightly bent. Field trip to office door to look at hinges (for juniors – just describe for teens/adults). Demo: roll up sleeve and show fast punch with elbow slightly bent. Do six to ten reps.
  • Add detail: tight fist/straight wrist. Discuss possible injuries. Do 10 reps.
  • If there is time, have student hit a focus target (soft, but firm).

Ura Ken/Ura Uchi/Hara Uchi

  • Explain that a backfist hits with the back of the fist, rather than the front.
  • Keep elbows bent.
  • Make sure they know their target.

Shita Tsuki/Tate Ken Tsuki

  • “Half a Punch” and “Three Quarters of a Punch” – show the connection to Seiken Tsuki.
  • Do not give White Belts the idea of tilting their fist in at the end – too much, too soon!

Fura Uchi

  • Good time to discuss Code of Ethics & judging the situation.
  • Target, fist position.

Shuto Uchi

  • Hand position – tight, not cupped.
  • Target.
  • Roll hand from chamber up to side – fingers between eye and ear.
  • Swing around to front, lead with elbow.
  • When hitting target, hit with side of palm, not fingers.


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