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BlueChip Academy's Technique Conceptual Series.

Technique breakdown - A - S - P

(Accuracy, Speed and Power, with "A" being most important, "B" being somewhat so, and "C" being marginally impacting)

#1 the Palm Heel Strike

Technique breakdown - ASP

  1. Accuracy - A
  2. Speed - A
  3. Power - B

Relative exercises:

  1. Push-ups (pectorals and triceps)
  2. Dips (triceps)
  3. Lunges with twists (with or without weights) for core development
  4. Stretching arms, shoulders and forearms
  5. "Rotation Flow" drills
  6. Resistance Striking


Key dynamic: deltoids, triceps, anconeus, trapezius, serratus anterior, pronators, wrist extensors

Key static: abdominals

Kinetic chain: Posterior, hip turn, shoulder turn, arm extension

Advantages: Very simple to learn, and great for novice fighters; you do not use your fist (bones are very fragile); very quick combative as hand is relaxed until impact; great "shock" opening for combinations, especially to nose or chin; needs less power than other combatives, can also be used with an injured hand

Disadvantages: Less effective for lower body shots; less range and natural feel as a punch

Conceptual: Understanding the concept of "effective as opposed to multiple strikes" is essential in surviving any kind of assault. Standing and trading blows with someone bigger, stronger, more powerful and with malice of intent, will only result in getting hurt. To transform from victim to attacker requires intuition and perception, quick reflexes, and a survival mentality.

When you can learn and then program into the mid-brain accurate and proven defense mechanisms, only then will your animal instinctive survival responses actually succeed.

The Palm Heel Strike has become a favorite technique of numerous martial arts experts!

#2 the Knee Strike

Technique breakdown - ASP

  1. Accuracy - B
  2. Speed - B
  3. Power - A

Relative exercises:

  1. Modified" Mountain Climber for building lower body power and stamina
  2. Bicycle Crunch for core flexibility and strength
  3. Walking Knee Raises (toes pointed down) for calves and hip flexor development
  4. Resistance striking for power (heavy bag, kick shields)
  5. Resistance striking for accuracy (focus mitts, sparring partner light contact)
  6. Lunges for quad development and hip flexor stretching


Key dynamic: hip flexors, calves, gluteus maximus, deltoids, latissimus dorsi, abdominals

Key static: pectorals, biceps, triceps, brachialis

Kinetic chain: posterior leg extension, hip and shoulder turn

Advantages: Your body's safest, hardest and most potent weapon, especially within trapping or clinching range; extremely deceptive to the non-skilled attacker; can generate up to 2.5 tons of force, enough to lift a car; great defensive blocking weapon

Disadvantages: Limited range

Conceptual: Most assaults are within trapping range; in other words, "up close and personal"! Your attacker, besides being totally convinced of victory, usually wants to physically overpower you, to impose his will and dominate...time-honored "caveman syndrome". All should truly learn how to fight in this range, maybe the singular most important skill development with assault survival training. Thailand's national sport is Muay Thai (Thai Boxing), which involves kicks, punches, elbows and knees. Krav Maga's combatives are largely based upon this renowned art, and for a very good reason. "Kao Tone" is the Thai word for the straight knee strike, and is as revered as the elbow strike, especially with intent of targeting your attacker's head, face, sternum, solar plexus, stomach, groin and thighs. Similarly, with other knee strikes, such as round, inward/downward angles and even flying, the targets may include kidneys, spine and back of the neck and head....all potential "stoppers".

#3 the Elbow Strike

Technique breakdown - ASP

  1. Accuracy - B
  2. Speed – B+
  3. Power - A

Relative exercises:

  1. Push-ups (pectorals and triceps)
  2. Dips (triceps)
  3. Lunges with twists (with or without weights) for core development
  4. Stretching arms, shoulders and forearms
  5. "Rotation Flow" drills
  6. Resistance Striking


Key dynamic: pectorals, biceps, serratus anterior, deltoids, brachialis, gluteus maximus, calves

Key static: abdominals, quadriceps

Kinetic chain: Posterior, hip turn, shoulder turn and rotation

Advantages: The safest, hardest and most powerful of all hand/arm strikes, great blocking technique, effective close range hand/arm technique, good “ground and pound” combative

Disadvantages: Limited range, misconception with regards to proper technique, over-rotation and miss may expose back if not properly reset, ulnar nerve may be damaged affecting 4th and 5th fingers

Conceptual: As previously stated with the knee strike, most assaults are within trapping and grappling range, many times ending on the ground. If one does not learn how to fight in this manner, all other training means very little. Elbow strikes can be multi-directional and extremely well-placed technique may temporarily stun your attacker and enable your escape. Both elbows and knees offer excellent defenses against your opponent’s strikes, especially when used as “destructive blocking techniques”.

#4 Choke from the Front

Always remember, that your immediate/surprise response and subsequent defense will save you. An attacker is 100% convinced of his or her success, and when that train of thought is disrupted, even momentarily, their success rate statistically diminishes dramatically!

Trapping Range: Attackers want to “over-power” their intended victims, and this is accomplished by a variety of trapping techniques: headlocks, chokes, hair and wrist grabs, bear hugs, clothing grabs, take-downs, etc.

Two types of chokes: 1) air and 2) blood (the most dangerous).

When choked from the front (air supply), either static or being pushed, the response will be exactly the same, and this should at first be practiced standing still. Also, you will find that ALL of the choke responses will eventually become blended into the same conceptual defense.

  1. Your right arm shoots straight up next to your ear
  2. Turn towards your left and trap opponent’s hand under you armpit
  3. Base
  4. Trap/pluck opponent’s other arm with your left hand (these four initial moves should literally be simultaneous)
  5. Deliver right elbow to opponent’s face, temple…whatever is available (attention to strategic striking areas is of the utmost importance)
  6. Krav Maga control position
  7. Knees to groin, legs, chest, face, etc.

Conceptual: Re-programming one’s animal instincts or mid-brain responses are essential in Krav Maga. Also, the philosophical conversion from being a victim to becoming the attacker is quite necessary to the success of surviving an assault. With enough training, one’s intellectual/fore-brain reasoning becomes the mid-brain instinctive reaction.

#5 Combat Side-Control Escape

Escaping from side control is not a matter of strength, but rather one of continuous small maneuvers designed to create space between you and your attacker to allow you to get the attacker in your guard, kick, get up (however you can), and get out. You have the element of surprise on your side as long as you don't panic and/or try to muscle your way out.

If you are on the ground, in side control with the attacker on your right:

  1. Breathe.
  2. Bend your knees and bring your feet close to your body to prevent the attacker from getting into the mount position.
  3. Start maneuvering/distracting/hurting your attacker to make him move enough to gain ground and create space to brace (think street – not sport). Use all weapons available, and understand that you are seeking minute changes in his position that allow you to get where you want to be.
  4. Brace your right forearm under the attacker’s hip/leg; and your left forearm under the attacker’s neck/jaw. Make sure to brace with the sharp edge of your forearm. Do not attempt to push the attacker off; you won’t win. Continue to create space (creatively/attack....knees, elbows, teeth, etc.)
  5. Once braced, and you have space/opportunity, turn on your right hip and shrimp out (i.e., move your butt away from the attacker); make room to bring your right knee/shin in between you and the attacker. The objective is to get him into your guard.
  6. Once in guard position, protect your face from attack, push back with your feet, kick face/chest, and get up and get away.