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Striking to Unorthodox Targets


Geekjitsu Black Belt
Jan 11, 2005
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A lot of TMAs use strikes to various body parts. Like Karate has blocks where you try to injure your oponent's arm, some chinese arts use strikes to the armpit... Besides head shots, body blows, and lowkicks to the tigh, what other targets do you feel are good to strike in a MMA situation ? What about for a self defense situation ?
For self defense. Go for the family jewels. Will stop pretty much anybody in their tracks.
Great if you can do them, but I find they require far too much precision to make the risk/reward ratio worth it in a fight. The basic, straightforward techniques work best, and everything else in my opinion is just more options.
BET-balls, eyes, throat. Hammer fist to the side of the neck works everyfricking timetoo. This is the money shot.
you've seen that move nic cage did in conair? you know, the one that got him in jail? do that. but only in a streetfight, that stuff is way too dangerous in the ring.
I don't know what you're talking about... can you describe the move ?

And Balls, Eye, Throat are the most common targets you can think of. The ankles are a nice idea, if someone is down you can probably break his ankle if you stomp on it.
eyes, throat, biceps if you want to get loose if he grabs you, achiles tendon(or whatever it's called in english), frontkick on nee, sidekick on knee, kidneys, any vertebra(the higher the better), plexus, sternum is optional but not really the way to go if you want to seriously hurt someone : its one of the strongest bones in your body and until the age of 40 mostly very flexible, ribs are pretty good, ears are great uh and now I can't immediatly think of something else
Other than hitting joints (knees, etc.) and pressure points my Kung Fu instructor actually had a pretty interesting philosophy regarding striking. He also practiced Chinese medicine (not that all Kung Fu instructors don't do that in the movies or real life for that matter) and told me to hit "whatever part of the body is cast in shadow if the sun were shining from directly above it."

Now before you think I'm going Mr. Miyagi on you, he explained that the inner areas of the body (the inner legs, arms, etc.) are more sensitive than the outer. For example, if you pinch your inner thigh (don't do this in front of any girls) it hurts more than pinching your outer thigh. I think it has to do with nerve clusters, etc., but it does make sense. I've taken a few shots from my Muay Thai instructor to the inner thigh and it hurt far worse than the outer thigh shots.

From a self-defense perspective, think about kicking someone with the point of your shoe to the inner thigh or shin. It's something people rarely look for and granted it may not take them down, but it'll definitely catch them off guard and they'll mostly likely move a lot slower (cautiously?) as a result. This can open up a lot of opportunities for other strikes, subs, etc. that you couldn't normally go for if the guy was ready...
I'll just ad the ear, like the side of the neck it works almost 100% of the time.
i doubt you guys have all hit someone in the side of the neck in a street fight. maybe 1 of you have. but i still think that 1 of you just read about it in another thread. i know because i read that other thread too.

interesting. i've heard a kung fu guy say that its better to strike upwards at targets, so you lower your stance if necessary.
Cupped hand on the ear, anything to the eyes, windpipe, etc.

I used to teach the rape-defense classes and we'd tell them the highheel stomp to the instep. I never really believed it until I dropped a heavy wooden pallet on my instep, wearing a workboot, and limped for two weeks.

My friend once had a school toughguy up in his face, you know, the chest to chest, nose to nose thing. This was a big dude, and Joesneak-attacked him by suddenly pushing him sideways, so his weight was more on one foot, then did this little inside kick to the ankle, and the guy ended up spraining it. He just rocked him up on that foot and stomped it kinda quick.

Never done it fighting, but rolling and messing around I had my buddy pinned in a crossbody position, and just for fun, I held his arm down and elbowed him lightly where the biceps and triceps meet just a couple inches above the elbow. It hurt him like crazy, like really hurt him, and I felt like a jerk.

Once in a real match I took a guys back, but could only get one hook in. I put my left elbow between his shoulders and hooked the opposite tricep in my hand, thinking of the armlock, and he was bucking me off his back to the left. For just a minute his right side ribs were open and the range was perfect, so I elbowed him with the right elbow in the kidney. I really thumped him, and I think it won me the match, because he acted hurt and I got a choke on him a second later.

That little hollow above the sternum is really bad, because it makes you cough and lose breath. I punched a kid during wrestling practice because he kept digging a thumb in there, and almost got kicked off.

I still think the collarbone is underrated. I've seen a lot of MMA fights where the guy is in guard or crossbody or side control and trying to elbow the head or face, but the distance is wrong, he's to close or he's too high, but where he could easily land a very powerful shot with the point of the elbow on the collarbone.

I f you can take out legs with thigh-kicks I think other muscles could be taken out, too. I emember a couple of guys elbowing the thigh.