PAN AM Karate Footwork

pan am karate      Karate fighters operate in and out of two zones on the karate mat.  They share ‘personal space’ when they are within foot or hand striking distance and they use the remaining ‘tactical space’ to set up next attack maneuvers.  If the opponent is faster, then the next move is defensive – hopefully followed by a counterattack.  These martial artists move from point A to point B to point C rather than staying at point B or moving back to point A. Point C is the least most predictable position after an attack.

Oppositional karate fighters are alert and perceptive, detecting and evading attack with intuitive reactions.  They stay ‘grounded’, using sliding footwork.  Conscious planning and full steps with weight transfer between feet are too slow. They lift their feet when they want to propel themselves in a particular direction or when they performing an offensive kick. Karate footwork reflects the philosophical mindset, the strategies and ingrained body movements the fighters learned as beginners.

A Fighting Scenario Focusing on Footwork:

The attacker performs a lunge punch, left leg front kick, back kick (left lead closed stance); left reverse punch or step through punch or rear leg front kick (attacker right lead open stance).

The defender quickly slides to the outside or back of the attacker. As the attacker lunges forward with his left foot to punch, the defender adroitly slides forward and to the right. He not only avoided the punch, but he is behind the attacker out of range of other weapons, yet in optimal position for a quick counter. (1)

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/karate

http://www.karatetips.com/karate-footwork/

http://www.wikihow.com/Understand-Basic-Karate

http://webbrain.com/attach?brain=924DC4AC-434E-0FB3-F23F-AE0EB06544FE&attach=20&type=1  (1)

 

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Judo Footwork

pan am judo       Judo combatants fight one on one, barefoot. Each martial artist tries to throw his opponent off-balance by pushing and pulling.  This technique sets up a final backward or forward throw-over onto the mat. While fighting, martial artists maintain an attitude of ‘mutual prosperity’. This is one of Judo’s principles; the other is the ‘maximum yet efficient use of energy’.

Judo footwork involves holistic control: carriage of head above hips, unreadable eyes, calm breath, flexible torso and complex hand movements that synchronize with feet.  The martial artist’s footwork begins simply in the ‘natural position’. Whether advancing or retreating, swinging, sweeping, clipping or hooking his feet, the fighter’s posture and way of walking are integral to his movement and state of mind. Integral and intriguing.

Natural Position

Enduring the pushing or pulling of judo is possible with solid balance. The fighter keeps his feet shoulder-width apart, pointing outwards at about 45°.  His weight naturally projects over his big toes, always equally on both feet. His knees and hips are relaxed and slightly bent.

Judo Walking Method

The fighter’s legs, hips and feet all move forward or backward at the same time in the natural position.  Weight continues to be evenly distributed on both feet. He would never put one foot forward and ‘leave his other foot behind’.  Rather, he would take a step forward on his right foot and bring his left foot forward far enough while remaining in the natural position.  The left one more or less follows the right.  The Japanese name tsugi-ashi  literally means ‘following feet’. **   He walks with his hips. His feet do not move too far apart or too close together, his body—head, shoulders, hips—rise and fall. He walks with a smooth sliding gait.

[Usually humans walk by putting their weight on one foot and advancing the other, then shifting their weight to the advanced foot as soon as it touches the floor and advancing the other foot. If we walk backwards the process is the same, only in the opposite direction. Forwards or backwards, this walking method always leaves your weight on one foot for an interval during which your body itself remains back with that support foot.] (1)

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/judo

http://improvemyjudo.com/footwork/

http://judopedia.com/index.php/Shizen-hontai

http://judoinfo.com/kudo2.htm (1)

[** Note the name of this blog.]

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Handball Footwork

pan am handball          The referees keep their eyes on the handball players’ feet. They look for violations of the rules. For example, the ball must not touch below the player’s knee and certainly, kicking is not permitted. Players are restricted to three steps while holding the ball. If they exceed that limit, the referees card them. Handball players organize their movements to receive the ball on the left foot in front move. Then on their final of three steps, they have optimal take-off energy to pass or take a shot on goal. It is a “left, right, left” or “fake, drive, jump” pattern.

Watchful offside betters focus on the goalkeepers.   This is a high-scoring game, for example: 28 to 23, 38 to 33, and 35 to 32. With all the fast-moving offensive action, goalkeepers are on their toes for the entire game. They are busy but not bustling. Their moves are slow compared to their team mates.  But when the ball arrives it is a good bet that they spring into action.

Goalkeeper’s Footwork

Balance and instant reactions are important. Goalkeepers start and return to ready position with feet shoulder-width apart, weight on the balls of the feet and knees slightly bent. They move side to side in small even steps following the ball, reducing angles when an attacker advances. Feet spring with hands up and out to save high shots on goal, feet slide and go wide for low saves. Two informally-named footwork styles in response to low shots:

  1. The Yugoslavian style:

The goalkeeper takes a deep side step with his whole leg and same side hand movement. Body weight transfers to that leg and its foot is ‘open’; the inside of the foot is ready to stop the ball.

  1. The Scandinavian style

Sliding on the heel of the leg closest to the approaching shot on goal, the goalkeeper extends one or both hands towards the foot of that leg.

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/handball

http://mnteamhandball.blogspot.ca/2009/08/few-words-regarding-footwork.html

http://livesports-betting.com/are-you-a-handball-passionate/

http://www.wikihow.com/Play-Handball

http://teamhandball.ab.ca/clientuploads/goalkeeper-First+Step.pdf

http://www.videojug.com/film/how-to-handball-goalkeeping

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

      TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Trampoline Footwork

pan am gymnastics trampoline          Energy-wise, airborne gymnasts produce enough force through bouncing on a trampoline for 20 seconds to compare to a 200-metre sprint. Beginning and ending the short routine upright on two steady feet, they perform ten moves including somersaults and twists.  They achieve incredible velocity or speed in those rotations. Perfection is the standard.

Getting the Bounce

For the first bounce, the gymnasts’ feet begin flat; pressure is in the mid foot. Pressure moves to the forefoot, then the toes and ultimately to the big (great) toes for the upward push off. With each successive bounce, the gymnasts’ bodies feel gravitational force (Newton’s 3rd Law).  When a gymnast bounces down back to the trampoline, the surface of the trampoline reacts by pushing the same force upwards onto his feet. Olympic gymnasts can soar as high as a two-story building from their trampolines and land with between 15 g and 18 g of force. (1)  When a gymnast’s feet hit the trampoline, they deform the bounce mat.  But as his feet return to the air, the mat returns to its original shape.  Each take-off has a consistent base.

Scrutinizing the Bounce

Aiming for perfection, gymnasts and their coaches try to recapture and improve every move. They even film the bottom of the feet from under the bed/bounce mat of the trampoline. They check the timing, power and angles of footwork. Every aspect of footwork makes a difference in the velocity they can achieve in the air as they perform their somersaults or twists.

“Whatever happens in the air is determined by what happens in the bed.” (1)

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources:

http://www.toronto2015.org/trampoline

https://ojs.ub.uni-konstanz.de/cpa/article/viewFile/2873/2718

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/olympics/flying-through-the-air-under-intense-scrutiny/article4282552/ (1)

http://www.fig-gymnastics.com/publicdir/rules/files/tra/TRA-CoP%202013-2016%20%28English%29.pdf

http://www.introduction-to-physics.com/what-is-elasticity.html

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Rhythmic Gymnastics Footwork

pan am gymnastics rhythmic        Three panels of judges scrutinize every move in Rhythmic Gymnastics.  They assess:

  • the technical difficulty of jumps/leaps, pivots, balances or ways the gymnast demonstrates flexibility,
  • the artistic value of the music and apparatus in relation to continuous movement, and
  • how clear and precise the execution of movement is while holding or catching her hoop, ball, clubs and ribbons.

Needless to say, all eyes are on the gymnasts’ feet. Judges deduct points for incomplete moves, heavy landings, wobbly balances, non-defined shapes of the body, or lack of amplitude and/or elevation in a jump, or loss of rhythm with the music. The body must be aligned, with toes pointed and knees straight. (1)

The Importance of Footwork

A research team has proven that ‘feet performance quality’ is significant among the skills in Rhythmic Gymnastics and that it has influence on gymnasts’ success in competitions.

The key-points of the female gymnasts’ feet performance quality are:

  • the height of rising to half toe position;
  • the capacity to perform for a long time on one foot and maintain its turnout and the height of half toe position;
  • the capacity to balance for a long time in high turnout half toe position;
  • the degree of toe pointing;
  • the turnout of feet. (2)

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/gymnastics-rhythmic

http://www.rgalberta.com/bulletins/How%20Rhythmic%20Gymnastics%20is%20Judged.pdf (1)

www.fsp.uni-lj.si/mma_bin.php?id=2013102813085 (2)

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Artistic Gymnastics Footwork

gymnastics artistic      Even in its familiarity, the balance beam is still a daunting piece of athletic equipment.  Long and narrow, it is raised about 4 feet (1.2 m) above the floor.  Walking on the balance beam is where beginners start. Elite-level gymnasts jump, turn, run, kick, flip, do cartwheels, pirouettes, mount and dismount with seemingly effortless precision.  The riveting repertoires in this sport demonstrate creativity and control like no other.

Advice for First-timer’s Feet on a Balance Beam:

Stand at one end face the beam’s length.  With chest high and abdominal muscles contracted, place left foot in front of right. Turn feet out slightly and distribute weight evenly on balls of feet. Keep toes on top of the beam to prevent ankles from rolling. Align kneecaps with feet. Point arms up above head toward ceiling or extend arms like airplane wings. Looking straight ahead, step forward with right foot. Point toes and place the heel of right foot securely on beam. Continue forward, alternating feet until reaching the end of the beam.

Feat Footwork’ – Olympic Gold-Medal Balance Beam Routines:

2012…..split leap mount, front tuck, two flip-flops to a layout,  swing down, split leap, switch ring leap, front walkover, swing down, side aerial, sheep jump, back tuck, wolf jump, split leap, full turn, two flip-flops to a double pike dismount.

2008…..two flip-flops to a two-foot layout, front pike, standing full, switch leap, layout step-out, two-foot layout, switch leap, split jump, pike jump, back tuck, full turn, cartwheel to sit, round-off, full-in dismount.

2004….. ‘Onodi’ which is a jump backward, then a half twist into a front handspring, then a flip-flop, one-armed flip-flop, layout step-out, split leap,  ‘Kotchetkova’ which is full-twisting back handspring, then a front walkover, flip-flop, back pike, full turn, ‘Omelianchik’ which is a back dive with ¼ (or ¾) twist to land in a handstand, then a round-off, full-in dismount. (1)

[Please check source for winners’ names and countries.]

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/gymnastics-artistic

http://livehealthy.chron.com/walk-beams-3645.html

http://www.livestrong.com/article/148109-balance-beam-activities/

http://fulltwist.net/olympic-difficulty-part-3-balance-beam/ (1)

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Golf Footwork

pan am golf       Some pros can quickly scan your golf stance and predict how you will swing.  Good footwork makes for good club swings. Alignment to the target, proper rotation and weight transfer, it all follows through. The corollary is also true: poor, overactive footwork can disrupt the overall swing rhythm.  Golfers practice self-examination with every stroke; drills at the driving range follow the diagnosis. Problems and symptoms get analyzed and eliminated, whether it is toes up in the downswing, falling back on heels, or hitting from the back foot. Golf is a difficult game played by professional and occasional perfectionists.

Remedial golf is the norm. Yet, baseline readings on what needs to be corrected can differ in the way that western and eastern medicine do. Some say ‘change your foot action’ while others say ‘footwork is passive, not active’.  Both high-and-low handicap players struggle with their footwork. They look to their feet when they can’t place the ball. Again, the corollary is true: when golfers are swinging well, they feel it in their feet.

Here’s a simple prescription for a decent shot at a good golf swing:

“Focus on your feet, forget about your arms”

Step 1:  During your backswing, lift up your left heel, and

Step 2:  During your follow through, lift up your right heel.

At first, you’ll want to really over-do the part of the drill where you lift your heels. It’s very important that you use the heel lift to “stomp” your left heel down to start the downswing. Apart from helping you naturally transfer your weight, it will also help you instinctively fire the correct muscles in the left leg and hip that you need to stabilize the downswing and impact positions. (1)

[I can already hear the naysayers!]

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/golf

http://www.linksmangolf.com/t-lesson-golf-importance-of-proper-footwork.aspx

http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-instruction/short-game/chipping/tiger_woods_gd090

http://www.rotaryswing.com/golf-lessons-blog/improve-your-weight-transfer-in-golf-and-your-golf-swing-footwork/ (1)

http://www.taylorgolf.net/articles/quietfeet.pdf

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Football (Soccer) Footwork

pan am football aka soccer      Whether dribbling, passing or shooting the ball, football players must think on their feet.  On the field, they keep the ball moving and aim to put it past the goalie into the net. To accomplish this simple thing, players also play a complex thinking game. The ball needs to be moved by foot and must arrive at the right person’s feet without letting any other fast-moving feet intervene. All parts of the foot can be used during the game.  Whether for controlling the ball or kicking it from various angles, Football is truly an “Inside-Outside-Top-Heel-Bottom-of–the-Foot Game”

Of all the football skills, kicking the ball powerfully is apparently the most difficult. It can be an offensive shot on goal or a defensive clearance. It entails a big windup and a big follow through.

Key Pointers for a Kick

Relax.  Allow your entire body to go limp. Shake it out. Let your head, neck legs and every part of your body relax.  The only part of your body that will have tension is your ankle.

Large last stride / loading.  Make your last stride a long “forward hopping” load. Your heel should come close to your behind.  Allow your knee to come through first.  This is known as “storing the load”. Your lower leg will form a V shape. Keep that V shape as long as possible and at the last minute let it extent in a WHIPPING motion through the ball.

Kick with the big toe knuckle.  Approach the ball from a slight angle. The largest bone in your foot is the first metatarsal which is just above the big toe knuckle. This translates into FORCE or energy at impact.

“Break the pane”.   Pretend that the ball is sitting in front of a large pane of glass. You want to break the pane with your body, not just your leg or foot. This means that your forward momentum should continue through the shot. This will also cause you to land on your SHOOTING foot, not your plant foot.

Watch your foot contact the ball.  If you can see your foot strike the ball you are kicking properly. Doing this also keeps your body in a slightly “bent over” position.  Straightening up will kill some of the power release. (1)

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/football-soccer

http://www.socceru.com/kicking_soccer_ball_with_power.htm (1)

http://www.soccer-training-methods.com/kicking-a-soccer-ball.html

http://www.soccer-training-info.com/soccer_strategy_tactics.asp

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Field Hockey Footwork

pan am field hockey       Field Hockey has similar strategies and positioning to soccer. Unlike soccer, field hockey players cannot use their bodies to protect or project the ball. They control the ball with their sticks alone. Feet must not touch the ball whether deliberately or unintentionally. Only the goalkeeper is allowed to use (either of) her feet to stop or kick the ball.

Nevertheless, good footwork is foundational to field hockey. Players must stop, start, and change direction with quickness and balance. When they are chasing, receiving or passing the ball, it is ‘stick work on the run’. Indeed, the running may seem endless. During 70 minutes of play, players run nearly 10 K – more than athletes in almost any other sport.

Freeze Frame on Three Footwork Skills

Foot positions change quickly as field hockey players perform skills while running. A player gets the ball for just a split second. So this is a snapshot description of a three-way connection: her feet, her stick and the ball.

  1. Passing

From a wide base of support with feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent, the player stands sideways to the ball. The ball is midway between and in front of feet; the ball is on her stick, her eyes on the ball.  She transfers weight from her right foot in back to her left foot in front as the ball is pushed forward.  During the weight transfer, her left knee is almost touching the ground.

  1. Receiving

In the path of the ball, the player moves her feet constantly to ensure she is in the best position before ball arrives. She stays low with knees bent. She reaches out in front with her stick at a 45 degree angle to the ground ahead of her left foot.

  1. Hitting the Ball

As she brings her stick through, she steps forward on her left foot to the ball, transferring weight forward to that foot. Her left shoulder points in the direction the ball is to be hit. She hits the ball with her stick off her left foot. Her next step is a cross-step behind the left foot.

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources:

http://www.toronto2015.org/field-hockey

http://www.humankinetics.com/products/all-products/field-hockey-2nd-edition

http://www.runnersworld.com/fun/distance-run-per-game-in-various-sports

http://www.fieldhockey.ca/en/howtoplayfieldhockey

http://thompsonbooks.com/halteacher9/halteacher9/Unit8LessonPlans/PDFLessonPlans/Unit8_Lesson_Plans_FieldHockey.pdf

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM

PAN AM Fencing Footwork

pan am fencing      A fencer’s footwork during a bout with his opponent determines his advantage.  Whether advancing or retreating, he changes the speed and tempo of the contest with his feet.  His every move has a countermove. Good strategy requires that fencers recover from and make good use of any maneuver.  Fencers crisscross the floor laterally and linearly just as they crisscross blades. All footwork coordinates with blade work; there may be two or three blade actions per move. Fencers are so well-trained; their fluid, efficient, and instantaneous footwork becomes second nature.

On Guard!  

Stance:  When ready to attack, the feet form an L-shape.  The front foot points at opponent; the back foot is perpendicular with heels touching.  When defending, the feet are in identically reverse position. The fencer can deceive his opponent by having feet in the offensive stance and then twist his upper body into a defensive position.

Advance:  The attacking foot moves forward so that its heel replaces the toe’s position.  The knee of leading leg is over the toe. Feet are shoulder width apart. Body weight is evenly balanced over feet.

Retreat:  Feeling with the toe, the hind heel lifts slightly reaching backward and landing slightly upon the toe and ball before planting the heel of the foot. The forward foot toe then lifts and reverses a foot-length, landing softly on the heel.   Feeling with the toe produces an even flow and sure footing.

Lunge: Simultaneously, the attacking toe lifts and pulls the attacking heel slightly off of the floor, moving slightly forward in a kicking motion.  Propelling with his rear leg, the fencer lands with his attacking knee bent directly over his toe.

[These footwork descriptions are simple, out of necessity.  To give you a sense of how much more detailed the fencer’s footwork is, consider the names of Lunge variations:

  • Assisted Lunge
  • Breaking Lunge
  • Jump Lunge
  • Advance Lunge
  • Retreat Lunge
  • Front Foot Withdrawal Lunge
  • Front Foot Withdrawal Reverse Lunge
  • Advance Crossover Lunge
  • Retreat Crossover Lunge
  • Advance Check Step Lunge
  • Retreat Check Step Lunge.]

Go to – http://www.toronto2015.org/schedule

Resources: 

http://www.toronto2015.org/fencing

http://acfencers.tripod.com/essentials.html

http://www.swordandmug.us/SWORD/footwork.htm

http://alexdumas.hubpages.com/hub/Move-Faster-When-Fencing—Footwork-Used-in-Fencing

Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.   1 Corinthians 9:25 (NIV)

TRAINING – COMPETITION – PODIUM