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Forget emptying my cup, I'm emptying the entire cooler

I've decided to be selfish.  With time limited by familial and professional pressures, I'm focusing on learning more and self-development (translation getting back into shape and salvaging what limited skills I have).  Today I did muay thai, for the first time in over a year, in a private lesson with Ian Ransburg at Top Level Gym.  Ian is a positive, patient coach with a critical eye and he pushed my brain much further than my sinews (which is another good thing since I'm sinewpenic).  During the hour long lesson never even got my gloves on.

On Movement

Ian had me shadowbox for a little bit, before stopping me and starting the lesson.  First, I need to relax and loosen up.  I need to keep my hips over my legs, taking small steps to get where I need to go, multiples if I have to, rather than over committing, just in case my sparring partners aren't as impressed by me as I think they ought to be.  In order to be able to adapt my attack, I need to be able to move, I cannot move if I am overextended, so small iterative corrections are the method to deal with that.  In essence, stop lunging.

Jab / Lead Hook

The long range guard starts with the lead hand 6-8" in front of the rear hand, shortening the distance and increasing the speed of the punches delivery.  My hands needs to be higher, I have the tall man's curse of keeping them lower than is advisable.  The lead hand can feint, turning into a jab, hook, grab, or slap at a moments notice.  The recommendation is to feint while moving, making opponents hesitate.  Power is through speed and the transmission of the energy developed from forward stepping.  I apparently cock my jab hand, giving a photographer or an opponent that long moment to get that beautiful shot of my face.  The jab loads the cross, I need to lessen my over rotation on the cross, keeping my spine erect.  The hook comes directly from the long range guard, delivered by rotation, keeping my head forward, an upward angle is acceptable for the body, while the horizontal fist for the head hook.  Keeping the feet within the same square lessens over rotation.

Lead Knee

When leg covering, the elbow slides lateral to the thigh.  For knees, we worked primarily the lead, using a short switch step so that I'm not stepping into the knee, leading to falling forward but rolling my hips over the through leg, from here rising to the ball of the foot, as the hips thrust through.  This will force the shoulders back rather than arching backward.  The knee is aimed medially, making the leg and foot go laterally.  The knee leg should be tucked tightly to the thigh, sharpening the wedge like shape.  The kneeing leg comes back placing you in the opposite stance, from which you can work, or you can resume your previous set-up.  The kneeing side arm guards the face, with the antecubital fossa in front of your jaw, avoid rotating the body to do this.

Rear Kick

Move into range then roll through the base leg 45° to create an angle.  The knee comes straight up, and is aimed at your target, then the leg turns over, like a bullwhip power is generated by speed.  If you miss, do not spin through, rather place your kicking foot on the far side, as if you switched directions.  Take a step forward and then pivot around your lead foot to return facing your opponent.  The body is erect, and your shoulders and knees should be in the same plane when landing the kick, the lead hand whips downward.  The knee comes straight back, your leg should be bent when it hits the floor.

"Horse Stance" Sweep

A trick for use against an opponent not squared with you, but has the same lead.  Throw your rear hand across their body as you step in behind them, almost in a "horse stance".  Sweep your arm backward to trip them over your leg.

Switch stance footwork

Essentially use the bounce to roll off the rear heel to switch stance going backward.  Conversely, going forward roll of the lead ball of the foot.  Switch the guard so that the lead hand and foot are unilateral.

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