Real Street Fights: Destroy Your Opponent With "Chop Kicking"!

Real Street Fights: Destroy Your Opponent With “Chop Kicking”!

Jeff Anderson

The thing about martial arts is that there really are no new techniques.

There are only new ways of applying them to destroying your opponent.

Loren Christensen is an experienced martial artist with DECADES of time and training spent in self-defense and law enforcement work.

I figured if anyone had some interesting stories to relate about martial arts techniques and REAL fighting on the street, it would be Loren.

Here’s a story he related to me about something called “chop-kicking” that I’m reproducing here in his words.

Destroy Your Opponent With “Chop-Kicking”!

street fight training / best street fight techniques: chop kicking
street fight training / best street fight techniques: chop kicking
Loren Christensen

Several years ago, I befriended the former editor of Karate Illustrated magazine, Renardo Barden, who had moved to my city to finish a novel.

We used to fish for trout together in one of the many rivers in the Pacific Northwest, and he would tell me stories of martial artists he had met in his job.

He was especially impressed over a kickboxer who was skilled at chop-kicking his opponent’s legs with his roundhouse kicks.

The fighter told him that when the muscles in either the front or back of the upper leg were struck at an angle, it shocked the muscle fibers and debilitated the victim.

Thinking this was interesting, I chop-kicked a training partner’s leg with my shin the next time we sparred.

Here’s what I learned…

Lesson #1: He’ll Go Down… HARD

To my amazement, both of his legs crumpled and he crashed to the floor (he was sort of mad about this, but that’s another story).

Although my kick was fairly controlled, it definitely took the fight out of the guy.

Since then, I have kicked others with it and every one of them dropped.

I don’t know if the impact is really shocking muscle fibers, but it definitely buckles the legs.

A friend of mine, a veteran kenpo instructor named Frank Garza, favors this kick and, in fact, had used it during a sparring session the night before I contacted him for his comments.

“It works great,” he said. “I prefer to hit the back of the leg at an upward angle with my shin because it seems to send a shock all the way to the hip joint and tightens the tendon to the butt.”

Lesson #2: Chop-Kicking Kills Legs

A chop-kick can more easily penetrate the leg and therefore transmit shock to the muscles and bone.

I have hit sparring partners, and I’ve hit people I was throwing out of a club where I worked as a bouncer.

All of them would start limping immediately and complain of a pulled hamstring muscle.

A downward strike to the back of the leg doesn’t seem to have the same effect, probably because the upper leg is much more muscular than the lower leg.

“When striking the front of the leg, the quadriceps,” Frank continued, “I prefer to use a downward angle with a shin kick. It seems to me that the muscles are weakest near the knee. It’s also an easier target to hit, and there is less chance of the kick being grabbed as is the case when kicking closer to the hip.”

Lesson #3: The Upper Leg Is WEAK

In conclusion, Frank noted that, “It’s interesting that even though we can condition our shins to take impact, it’s much more difficult to condition our upper leg to take blows.”

As mentioned, it’s a common reaction for your kicked opponent to drop to the ground when struck at an angle in the thigh.

Many of the guys I’ve hit with it couldn’t continue sparring because of severe cramping or an intense weakness in the limb.

Another reaction is for the recipient to bend over at the waist and lift the struck leg in an attempt to protect it.

Though he hasn’t fallen to the ground, he is virtually helpless and may be hopping around on one leg.

If you get a hopper, consider chop-kicking his support leg.

Hey, make life miserable for the guy and he might think twice about trying to hurt someone else!

What Leg Attacks Do You Favor? What Do You Train?

Please Share Your Tips Below Now…

  • I have a set of DVD’s on “Combat JKD” that taught the same kind of “chop kick” for attacking the side of the knee. The instructor on the DVD’s demonstrated the technique, and showed its effectivness.

  • Agreed, it is very effective, when I was training it even penetrates the thigh when holding a Muay Thai pad!

  • Loren, next time you get a chance, talk to Rory Miller about the ‘dead leg kick’ he ran across at the ‘Xing The Pond’ seminar. Rory is very impressed with the kick.

  • alain gravel says:

    Hi Marc and Loren, that is very effective. In a street fight, I dropped a man with that kick, he fell like a log…I do Muay Thai for over 10 years and that shin kick hurt like hell.If your legs are not condition, you fall.

  • I would be interested in the areas of the leg targeted. Having a Kyokushin background, this appears similar to a Gedan Mawashi-geri. I have personally witnessed highly trained kickers applying this kick on opponents, as well as seeing it in MMA events regularly, and it seldom “drops an opponent instantly. Granted, I have never personally witnessed an untrained average Joe struck by this, but I am curious to know if there are particular targets on the thigh that increase the effectiveness of this kick.

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