How to Do a Front Thrust Kick in Wing Chun

Learn how to do a Front Thrust Kick from Sifu Alex Richter in this Howcast Wing Chun video.

Wing Chun is a style that’s not just about hand techniques. Unfortunately a lot of people think that Wing Chun is a style that utilizes the upper body, but actually this isn’t true. In the Chum Kiu form, we have three basic kicks. When one goes all the way up to wooden dummy and learns all of the kicking methods we have in Wing Chun, we actually have a total of eight kicking methods, but they’re based on the three standard kicks that we have in the Chum Kiu form.

The first and most common kick we use is in Wing Chun is the front thrust kick, but we also have a couple others. The front thrust kick is probably the most practical and most common used kick in Wing Chun, because it follows with the same idea that we have with our hand techniques which is to go down a straight line to be very direct and very effective, rather than using round lines to come in for an attack. There is absolutely nothing more wrong with the round house kicks and spinning kicks. They’re very, very powerful it’s just in Wing Chun we use our main function is self defense. We want something that’s very quick, something that’s not going to upset our balance and something that we don’t need to stretch out of warm up before we use it on our attacker. So, when we use the front thrust kick we can either do it straight from the frontal stance, which is the kind of very traditional, classical method, or we can do it an advancing stance where our weight is on the back leg. Now, since we have all of the weight on the back leg in our Wing Chun system, when we lift up our leg, there’s absolutely no shift going on up here. That’s why, when you’re fighting, you can launch your front thrust kick very quickly, because you don’t have to shift your weight first before you kick. So, one of the basic exercises one should practice when you start the front thrust kick is actually just practice lifting up your leg and keeping your upper body in the same place.

Now, in Wing Chun, when we kick, we use a different body mechanic than you see in common front thrust kicks in other styles. Most styles, when they do a front kick, they lift up their knee, and they keep their knee in the same place, and they kick like this, usually with the toe. The problem with this kind of kick for Wing Chun at least, is that the direction of the power is actually going up, because if I leave the knee in this spot here, I’m actually kicking in this direction, but my opponent is front of me, I want to kick them. So we use a slightly different function, different knee movement, when we kick in Wing Chun. When we lift up our knee, what we’re actually going to do is drop the knee as we kick, so that our kick is much more like a horizontal stomp as opposed to a snap. So if somebody’s in front of you, you can practice with a kick shield.

Now real simple, you can even just start in the advancing stance, like this, and practice lifting up your knee. You can start from this position here or you can start from here, it doesn’t really matter. You lift your knee up and the idea is that you wanna kick with the heel as opposed to the toe. So I’m going lift my knee, and then my knee is going to drop as I do the kick. Alright? So this is a very important distinction in the way we kick compared to the other styles, is that we don’t want our force going up into space. We want our kick going, into the target forward so the knee goes up and has to drop. It’s a very unique idea behind the way we do our front thrust kick in our style.