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YD - 1st - Techniques (WHITE TAG)


Guarding Stance
Groin Kick
Back Elbow
Upward Knee
Hand Slap
High Cover
Seated Backward Breakfall



Upper Body & Arm Position

  • Hands fisted up on face (palms facing in)
  • Elbows in
  • Shoulders Up & on 45 degrees

Leg Position

  • Feet facing forward
  • Back Heel off the ground
  • Feet Shoulder Width apart
  • Feet Shoulder Width deep
  • Knees bent

Head Position

  • Hands fisted up on face
  • Head leaning forward
  • Mouth Closed
  • Lead with Forehead
  • Chin is down

Eye Focus

  • Head in Correct Position
  • Eyes forward
  • Eyes on opponent
  • Eyes aware


  • Mouth closed, tongue to roof of mouth
  • Breathe in and out through nose in stance
  • Breathe in through nose before striking
  • Breathe out through nose or mouth while striking

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  • Start in a correct Guarding Stance
  • Keep your other hand on your face while punching
  • Jab comes from your lead hand
  • The Jab should be your fastest punch
  • Do not pivot your feet while punching
  • Turn lead shoulder as far forward as possible
  • Protect your face with your lead shoulder
  • Keep your chin down while punching
  • Make a tight and strong fist with your punching hand
  • Return your hand back to your face as fast as you throw the punch

The Jab, is utilised to stop an opponent advancing towards you. It is in fact a defensive punch and not considered a damaging punch. The Jab can also be used like the Jam and Inside Leg kicks, to set up other strikes. Do not flare your elbow or pull your hand back prior to Jabbing as your opponent will easily read this and counter.

Here Jessica "Dragon Noi" Lavers-McBain utilises the Jab to beat her opponent to the punch.

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  • Kick with the lead leg
  • Curl toes down and extend your foot firmly
  • Lift knee straight up
  • Extend leg forward
  • Withdraw kick back to ground as fast as it was thrown
  • Be on balance, before, during and upon returning.

The Groin Kick is best thrown off the front leg as this decreases the chance for it to be detected and has a clearer path to target than off the rear leg. Kicking off the lead leg also serves to move your head back out of range while counter stabilising your balance.

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  • Look over the shoulder you are doing the elbow strike
  • Bring your arm forward
  • Drive the tip of your elbow backwards next to your side
  • Withdraw arm back to starting position just as quickly.

The back elbow can be done off either hand. This is primarily a self defence technique to defend against an opponent standing behind you.

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  • Start in the Clinch
  • Upward Pummel to gain a double inside grip
  • Move your hips back and away
  • Drive your rear knee straight up with your hips
  • Point the toes downward of the kneeing leg
  • Raise up onto the ball of your supporting foot
  • Knee upward, usually to the head
  • Keep on balance, and place foot back down gently

The Upward Knee is one of the most sought after knees to throw during a Muay Thai bout. Most of the time in the clinch your opponent will never allow you to throw it, however if they have a lapse in judgement or are weak in the clinch, take advantage of it and use an Upward Knee. This knee is the main reason why Thai Boxers will keep their hips close to their opponents and their head up high during a clinch. Forget this and give your opponent room and they will finish the fight with an Upward Knee to the head.

Above Daniel "BDK" White throws an Upward Knee toward Harley Osgoods head.

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  • Start in a correct Guarding Stance
  • Open the hand you are about to slap with
  • Extend the slapping hand out 45o from the body
  • Swing from the shoulder, with a slightly cupped hand
  • Target can be ears, nose, groin etc.

A Palm Slap is an excellent strike to use in self-defence, as it does not carry the same risk of fracturing your hand as a punch does. It takes some time to condition your fist to be able to punch at full power, but a Palm Slap will take little conditioning to be immediately combat ready.

The Palm Slap is also known as Hirate in Japanese (we use English for this particular technique in Black Dragon Kai). The way it is written is as follows

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  • Start in Guarding Stance
  • Bring your hands straight up to your forehead
  • Push the palms of your hands into your forehead
  • If wearing gloves, push the knuckles into your forehead
  • Leave a big enough gap that you can see between
  • Don't make the gap so wide you can be punched
  • Lean into the punch, keeping arms tight
  • Keep your eyes fixed on your opponent
  • Withdraw hands back to Guarding Stance


The High Cover defence can be used against a number of different attacks. It provides maximum protection from the front and minimal to the sides. The best thing to do is imagine that High Cover is like a helmet; the snugger the fit the more protection you will have, the looser the fit the more impact you will sustain.

Here is a good example of a High Cover, that successfully defends a jab from Duane "Shadow" Sheppard, during a Foxtel televised match.

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  • Start in a correct Guarding Stance
  • Keep your hands on your face while switching
  • Keep your head the same height off the ground
  • Move both feet simultaneously
  • Slide both the feet across the floor
  • Do not jump up as you Switch
  • Land in a correct opposite Guarding Stance
  • Keep your eyes forward and do not look at your feet

A Switch is utilised to either change stance or confuse your opponent. This is the fastest footwork you can do to change your stance, should you find yourself the opposite leg forward. Do not jump to switch as this will delay your footwork and warn your opponent that you are changing stance.

Examples of some techniques to use with Switch footwork:

  • Switch, Jab
  • Switch, Cross
  • Switch, Hook
  • Switch, Knee
  • Switch, Front Kick

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  • Start Sitting on the Ground with arms crossed
  • Rock backwards
  • Just before your shoulder blades touch the ground, slap your arms on the floor
  • Your arms should slap the ground next to your belt
  • Keep your head up and off the floor
  • Keep your back curved to decrease impact

The Sitting Backward Breakfall is an introduction in how to fall safely. Although we do not want to defend ourselves on the ground, it is imperative that we know how to land on the ground safely, so that we may be capable of standing up again. It is also the introduction to a useful safety skill, that will come in handy any time you trip, fall down or fall off something

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