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The 10 Best Kicking Martial Arts Techniques You Should Learn!

The 10 Best Kicking Martial Arts Techniques You Should Learn!
02 Jul 2024

In the world of martial arts, mastering kicking techniques is essential for both self-defense and competitive combat. Kicking techniques not only provide reach advantage but also deliver devastating force when executed with precision and skill. 

From traditional disciplines like Taekwondo to modern mixed martial arts (MMA), there's a series of kicking techniques that practitioners can incorporate into their arsenal. In this article, we'll explore the 10 best kicking martial arts techniques you should learn, covering a variety of styles and applications.

10 Best Kicking Martial Arts Techniques You Should Learn!

Kicking techniques stand as pillars of both defense and offense, offering a dynamic array of strikes that can incapacitate opponents with precision and power. Here are several kicking martial arts techniques you can learn for better strikes:

1. Roundhouse Kick

Originating from karate, the roundhouse kick is one of the most fundamental and versatile kicking techniques. Executed by swinging the leg in a semicircular motion, the roundhouse kick targets the opponent's midsection, ribs, or head with the top of the foot or the shin. 

Its adaptability makes it effective in various combat scenarios, including both striking and clinch range.

2. Front Kick

The front kick is a staple technique in many martial arts disciplines, including Muay Thai, Taekwondo, and Karate. It involves thrusting the foot forward to strike the opponent's body or face with the ball of the foot. 

The front kick is prized for its speed, accuracy, and ability to maintain distance, making it an excellent tool for both offense and defense.

3. Side Kick 

Known for its power and penetration, the side kick is a devastating technique commonly seen in Taekwondo and Karate. Unlike other kicks that travel in arcs, the side kick is delivered horizontally.

It is driving the heel or the edge of the foot into the target's midsection or knee. Its linear trajectory and thrusting motion make it effective for breaking through defenses and generating significant impact.

4. Axe Kick

The axe kick is a dynamic kicking technique originating from Taekwondo and Karate. It involves raising the leg high and bringing it down forcefully in a chopping motion, targeting the opponent's head, shoulder, or collarbone with the heel or the ball of the foot. 

The axe kick's vertical trajectory makes it particularly effective against taller opponents and can be used to counter strikes from above.

5. Spinning Back Kick

As its name suggests, the spinning back kick is executed by rotating the body 180 degrees before delivering a powerful kick with the heel or the ball of the foot. This technique is prevalent in Taekwondo and Kickboxing.

It catches opponents off-guard with its sudden and unexpected movement. The spinning back kick is renowned for its speed, power, and ability to strike with precision.

6. Hook Kick 

The hook kick is a deceptive and powerful technique originating from Taekwondo and Kickboxing. It involves swinging the leg in a hooking motion, striking the opponent's head or body with the heel or the ball of the foot. 

Despite its circular trajectory, the hook kick can generate significant force and catch opponents off-guard with its unconventional angle of attack.

7. Back Kick

The back kick is a rear-facing technique commonly utilized in Taekwondo and Karate. It involves turning the body away from the target before launching a powerful kick with the heel or the ball of the foot. 

The back kick is prized for its speed, power, and ability to catch opponents by surprise, making it an effective counterattack against advancing opponents.

8. Cut Kick

Cut kicks may not be the primary choice for delivering a decisive blow to an opponent, but they possess the ability to prompt fighters to reconsider their tactics swiftly. This technique is frequently observed in Muay Thai, particularly employed as a countermeasure against roundhouse kicks.

The cut kick is executed similarly to a low kick, but its target is the opponent's rear leg or the supporting leg when executing a roundhouse kick. If executed with sufficient force, the cut kick has the potential to destabilize opponents by sweeping them off their supporting leg.

While the cut kick may not inflict significant physical harm, its psychological impact on fighters can be profound, as it instills a sense of caution regarding the potential consequences of executing roundhouse kicks, knowing they could be vulnerable to being swept off their feet.

9. Calf Kick

While not the most widely favored kick among practitioners, the calf kick has been steadily increasing in prominence in recent years. It employs similar mechanics to the traditional low kick in Muay Thai, albeit targeting the calf muscle rather than the thigh.

This kick is particularly effective against aggressive opponents who favor advancing and striking. Upon impact, the calf kick serves to impede the opponent's movement, diminishing their speed and rendering them more susceptible to subsequent strikes.

10. Crescent Kick

The crescent kick stands as another sophisticated high-kicking technique frequently employed by kickboxers within the arena, often eliciting awe-inspiring reactions from spectators.

Executing a crescent kick involves stepping forward with the rear leg, then raising the opposite kicking leg and swinging it in a crescent shape. This motion resembles that of an axe kick but with a more pronounced outward arc.

Similar to the axe kick, the crescent kick often catches opponents off guard, creating an opportunity for the attacker to unleash subsequent strikes while capitalizing on the element of surprise.

Ready To Learn The Techniques?

As you start on your journey to master the 10 best kicking martial arts techniques, remember that dedication and practice are key to achieving proficiency. Whether you're a seasoned practitioner refining your skills or a beginner eager to learn, the world of martial arts offers endless opportunities for growth and development. 

If your children show interest in Muay Thai or seek to enhance their kicking techniques, consider enrolling them in a martial arts program at Rockstar Academy. Here, they will not only receive expert instruction in various disciplines but also have the chance to participate in RockOlympics, an enriching experience that uncovers their true potential.

Rockstar Academy also provides Taekwondo testing as part of our commitment to facilitate Taekwondo students in progressing to higher levels and preparing for National and International competitions. These biannual tests ensure that our students meet the rigorous standards required to advance in their training, offering them the opportunity to showcase their skills and earn the recognition they deserve. 

With a commitment to excellence and a dedication to fostering personal growth, Rockstar Academy invites you to experience the transformative power of martial arts. Take advantage of their free trial class and start on your children’s journey of self-discovery today!


Are kicking techniques effective in self-defense situations?

Yes, kicking techniques can be highly effective in self-defense scenarios, especially when combined with proper training and technique. However, it's essential to assess the situation and use appropriate force to neutralize the threat without escalating violence unnecessarily.

Can anyone learn martial arts kicking techniques?

Yes, anyone can learn martial arts kicking techniques with dedication, practice, and proper instruction. Martial arts schools and academies offer classes tailored to different skill levels, allowing individuals of all ages and fitness levels to develop proficiency in kicking techniques.

How long does it take to master kicking techniques?

The time it takes to master kicking techniques varies depending on individual aptitude, dedication, and training frequency. With consistent practice and guidance from experienced instructors, students can progress steadily and improve their kicking skills over time.