Monday, January 2, 2012

Tips to Protect Foot in Kickboxing

The use of protection guards for the body, such as gloves, groin protection, shin guards, head protection, mouthpieces and foot protection, varies with competitions and sanctioning bodies. Unlike boxing, kickboxing does not require the boxer to wear shoes. Some sanctioning bodies allow kickboxers to wear footpads and shin guards. Taping of the feet also varies between the different kickboxing sanctioning bodies. Kickboxers typically condition their shins and ankles in advance of a competition in case foot protection is not allowed.
Some fighters tape their hands and feet for protection. The rule of thumb for taping of the feet is to use around three feet of tape for each ankle, notes Martina Sprague and Keith Livingston in their book "The Fighter's Ultimate Guide to Techniques, Concepts, strategy for Sparring and Competition."
Shin Guards
Shin guards may not sound like foot protection, but many shin guards have extra padding that covers the top of the foot. It serves two functions: to protect the sensitive areas of the shins and the tops of the feet including the ankles. Rules regarding shin guards vary between sanctioning bodies. The International Kickboxing Federation breaks down the rules on shin guards depending on the type of martial arts and whether it is a professional or amateur bout. Full contact rules for amateurs and professionals allow shin guards, but they must not be soccer guards, have no metal fasteners, must be made of a soft substance and be secured to the shin with an elastic strap and medical-athletic tape. International rules allow amateurs to wear shin guards, but not professional fighters. Muay Thai rules allow amateurs and professionals to wear shin guards if they choose, but in tournament bouts shin guards are mandatory. San Shou-Sanda rules are the same as the Muay Thai rules.
Foot Guards
Foot guards are not mandatory and not allowed in some kickboxing tournaments. The International Kickboxing Foundation rules for full contact kickboxing allow foot pads for amateur and professional fighters. They must be secured to the foot with an elastic strap and medical-athletic tape, they must cover all the toes and the entire heel and if they have laces, they must not be exposed. The International rules allow amateur fighters to wear foot pads, but not professional fighters. Muay Thai and San Shou-Sanda rules do not allow the use of foot guards.
Foot Guard Types
Foot guards, also called foot pads, come in a variety of styles, types and colors. Foam kick boots have reinforced vinyl on the sole for traction and use a Velcro strap. Foam kick boots resemble booties also use vinyl soles and Velcro straps. Professional PU contact T-Sport boots offer more padding around the ankle, have an open sole design and a quick release elastic strap at the toe. Professional foot guards and safety kick boots come in leather and foam models. Warrior kick boots are semi-contact kick boots that are lace less with vinyl straps for a secure fit.

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