MASTERCLASS | GROIN KICK | by Orjan Pettersen
Each week MASTERCLASS gives you brief but key information on how to optimise a simple Krav Maga strike or technique.
A groin kick - the ‘simple’ calling card of Krav Maga - is a primary striking choice as it can be a devastating medium range option available to you. The groin kick can be done at an angle of 180 degrees in front of you, or if flexible, even slightly wider. Therefore, practice it extensively.
Optimise the strike by:
Look towards the target aiming at a height (normally high chest) where you can see the entire person. Don’t look down towards the groin, inhibiting your view of the target’s arms and hands. Keep your hands up, between the target and yourself.
If needed to close the range, make a very short step (skip) placing the base foot as quickly as possible onto the floor, releasing the weight from the kicking leg. If the target is on an angle on your side, always use the near leg for the strike and the far leg as the base.
Make sure you have a slight drop of the base leg knee, acting like a suspension, to aid your balance during the motion.
Swing the kicking leg at max speed towards the target’s groin as if you were kicking a football 45 degrees into the sky. Aim to connect with the lower or mid part of the shin (not the in-step or ball of the foot), curling toes slightly upwards to tense the shin for hardness.
The kicking foot should disappear from view as the shin connects with the groin, ensuring that you hit with a large surface area (shin) rather than a small one (in-step or ball of foot) to optimise the chance of not missing the target. This also ensures that if the target moves towards you during the kicking motion, the higher end of the shin or your knee will still be in line to connect with the groin.
‘Dig’ the kick in momentarily, before your recoil the leg fast back to your desired position. This may be on the line with your other leg to continue with another kick or strike, or to the side or behind you, as part of an action to pivot and run away. Don’t practice continual groin kicks by placing the leg too far behind you, building up a habit of delaying the time between kicks by the leg having to travel too far each time. Place it on the line with your base leg and practice the forward ‘skip’ with the base leg each time instead.
Breathe out as you strike.