My rating: 5 of 5 stars
When I first started martial arts several years ago I couldn't figure out why the instructor paid such detail to the way I kicked, the exact placement, chambering, execution and timing. It wasn't until I entered my first sparring match that I began to recognize that sloppy kicks do little more than annoy, but well executed kicks deliver a wallop. Now as a second degree black I strive to develop better kicks. So I was delighted when I picked up a copy of Marc De Bremaeker's and Roy Faige's satisfying 256 page manual "Essential Book of Martial Arts Kicks," accompanied with an instructional DVD, from the local public library. As the authors note, this "book is not a "how to" book for the neophyte, but a reference work for the experienced martial artist" (8).
This is one installment in a series of works meant to focus the karateka on specific levels of kicks. "Essential Book of Martial Arts Kicks" takes six basic kicks and moves around them into various deliveries and styles. For example, the front kick is expanded from the primary, simple front kick to the heel front kick to the phantom groin kick and beyond. De Bremaeker and Faige have poured a lot of thought into the numerous variations giving the reader a total of eighty nine well developed kicks. The photographs are clear and crisp, the directional sketches are sharp and straightforward, and the explanations are intelligible and explicit. The authors have also taken great pains in describing and demonstrating the self-defense possibilities of each kick.
"Essential Book of Martial Arts Kicks," and the accompanying DVD, is a must-have for any martial artist who is serious about sharpening their skills. If you are a seasoned martial artist or an instructor, this volume will help boost your delivery and enrich your training. If you run a school, this manuscript would make a great addition to your collection of books to be lent out. I was so gratified by what I saw in this handbook that I returned it to the public library and purchased my own copy. I recommend you do the same.
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