I don’t have a “BOB” training dummy.  And this is the first place I’ve lived that I haven’t installed a makiwara in the backyard.  So the other night when I was resting between sets of pull-ups, I just started pounding the 4 x 6’s and it gave me an idea.   Why not use the support posts as a surrogate BOB or Makiwara?

So I created some target areas.  One at knee height, groin height, solar plexus, and face height as a reference point. So now in between sets of pull-ups, I’ll do 10-20 kicks – front kicks, step to the side kicks, crossover kicks (see photos).  With or without a finger jab or palm heel as an “entry” or just to judge
I find a lot of benefit in kicking a target that is firmly mounted and doesn’t have “give” or flex.  It requires you to have a strong foundation.  It requires good balance.  It helps with your judgment of distances.  And it makes you get used to hitting something firm and unforgiving. There’s instant feedback when you hit the post - if you’re off balance or the distance isn’t right, then you get thrown off upon impact or you can’t effectively absorb the counter force.   A valuable learning experience no matter how you slice it. 

This is a training method that goes back hundreds/thousands of years.  From
the “Pell” used by ancient Romans for practicing sword strikes (a DIY Pell found here), to the traditional Okinawan makiwara (interesting article and plan here).  I remember reading about Mas Oyama in “The Kyokushin Way”, punching and kicking trees and boulders while training alone in the mountains.  Always seemed pretty cool to me in a crazy kind of way.  
Bottom line, find something hard to hit and practice hitting or kicking it. You may be surprised what you learn.

Leave a Reply.