Coach Karl landing a head kick during a fight.

Landing strikes on a resisting opponent can be challenging for many reasons. Distance can be deceptive, knowing the right strike to throw can be difficult and of course; they are likely to be firing back at you! Most of the time, people will move quite a bit during a striking exchange, so you’ll have to be comfortable fighting from multiple distances. This is a concept that Coach Karl covers in detail during his Poughkeepsie mixed martial arts classes.

Today we’ll be discussing how to cover distance with kicks to set up elbows from a close range. Elbows are amongst the most brutal strikes in mixed martial arts and Muay Thai. The sharp bones of the elbow and forearm will frequently cut their victims, making them very effective tools for self-defense or competition. The first elbow set up that Coach Karl illustrates in the video above begins with his lead teep. Karl throws his teep (long front kick) to collect data on how his opponent will react. Most commonly, people will catch a teep or hollow their hips back to defend. This sequence will be effective as long as they’re not just running away. Since we’ve established that our opponent plants their feet to defend when we teep, Karl now fakes the teep, allowing him to slide into elbow range as he fires a rear elbow, rear knee, another elbow, inside knee bump to disrupt their balance as he finishes with another knee to the head. 

Coach Karl teaching muay thai
Coach Karl prepares all of his Poughkeepsie martial arts students for combat at any range!

Karl then demonstrates a very similar combination, but starts it with a rear kick instead of his lead teep. However, the underlying concept is the same; get them to defend a kick from one side, step or hop forward as you fake that same kick, allowing you to quickly and safely cover distance. For more tips and tricks, come learn from Coach Karl in person! As an undefeated mixed martial arts champion, kickboxing champion and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, there is no shortage of technique when Coach Karl is teaching class. Come join the best martial arts classes in the Hudson Valley, give us a call at (845)392-8495 or click HERE to get started today!

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About the Author

Oliver Swanson has been training martial arts since 2016 and assists to coach boxing classes at Precision Boxing and MMA. He is also a NASM Certified Personal Trainer. When he’s not working, he loves spending time with his family and making his friends laugh.