Sweeping Away the Rebels
The sweep kick is an exciting
kick to witness in a form and a great way to show that you
are fit, healthy and limber. It is also a worthy goal to achieve if
you are not.
my ability to perform such techniques as I get older has
been my measuring stick of physical fitness.
My shifu often said that as long as
we keep up this
kicking skill we will have a healthy body not found in the
Training the Sweep
But, what is the use of the
sweep kick? Training the low sweep kick is great for
preserving health and fitness, but how can we apply and train
this kick against an opponent?
How do we train the sweep
kicks to build our confidence in applying them against the
As my shifu said, "It is a
devastating and surprising attack to the opponent's lower
gate. When it is successful the consequences of having both
your feet swept out from under you can be devastating."
As in most all martial art methods
you attack one target in order to finish with another. In
this case, the low sweep kick starts with a side kick.
In Chinese the sweep
kick is called 'rebel sweeping kick-sao
Notice how the
sweeping foot is turned in.
Before starting this
drill one must have first learned several other
drills. One of the first two person drills to be
mastered is the side kick drill.
A clever entry method is
required in order to succeed with the sweep kick
the sweep kick drill the clever opening move is the side kick.
Here shown by my shifu, Shi Zhengzhong.
Besides first learning
the side kick drills one must learn the uprooting kick
drill for the uprooting kick was shown in the
article last month
Kicks Of Peng
There are several ways to
practice two person sweep kick drills. This drill is
composed of the following three kicks.
Tse chuei-side kick.
Chao tuei- uprooting kick,
first explained in last month's article.
Most important is
mastery of the sweep kick. Long before learning
these drills the student will have mastered the
solo exercises and forms with the front sweep,
back sweep, half sweep and full sweep as well as
One last kick to include is
the jumping face hanging kick-gua mien jiao.
This kick is so named since
you 'hang your foot' upon the opponent's
face. A creative way to say that you kick
them in the face. This kick is performed by
the opponent when avoiding the uprooting
kick and sweep kick. This defensive type of
attack reminds the sweep kicker to be aware
of their head when going low for the sweep
The Kicking Drill
drawings done by me many years ago are not
completely correct. The key issue is the hands
pulled to the waist. An easy way to draw, but not
quite right. The hands are either grabbing or kept
in front of the face.
steps in with a side kick, later when the skill
improves he can use a jumping side kick to cover the
White pants blocks
They both strike with
the right hand to the face (inset).
Black uses his left
arm to forcefully push up the elbow of white and do
the left uprooting kick.
White lifts his
Without a pause in
motion black follows through with a sweep kick while
white jumps and kicks with the left foot.
If either fails to
act quick enough on the final kick then they will be
hit. If the sweep kicker is too slow he will be
kicked in the face or body with the face hanging
kick. If the jump kick is too slow he will fall over
from the sweep kick.
But it is more than
the possibility of being hit. The drill is so
arranged that both people feel as if they are not
quite moving fast enough. Because of the feeling
that your speed needs to increase you have the
result that the more you train this drill the faster
you become with the kicks. Yet, no matter how fast
you are moving you still feel as though you need to
be moving faster!
As soon as the
third kick is completed both white and black pants
punch to each other's face with the left hand and
the drill repeats with the other leg.
practice mastery of this method can be attained[