Martial Arts/about stretching


am a 20yr old boy... nd i am training in taekwondo these days... earlier was trained in shotokan karate....
my query is about current master tell me that excess of strching or splits like gymnasts can spoil power of your kicks.... it is true sir??? i cn split fully about 170degrees ... cant make 180 degrees ... so he says this much of stretch is enough for you.... dnt stretch much else ur kick's power will b gone... so he asks me to practice kicks nd do squats with light weights for improving my kicks.... but my earlier teacher emphasises mre on stretching ... m too much confused sir.... plese help me..... because i wanna imprve my kicks... nd plese advise me some workouts for improving kicks...i can split well ... i jus need to know how to improve my kicks more... nd whether excess stretching is harmful for legs???? my current mastr is 3rd degree black blt in tkd....
please help me sir....

ANSWER: Young man, first you are not a boy anymore, but a man.
Your Instructor being only a 3rd Dan in TKD is a beginner himself, so he will not know everything.
Your kicking height and speed come from your muscles. You must strengthen them and stretch them too.
You will never stretch too much, unless you do it improperly. If done improperly, it will hurt you and you will feel the pain that is intense.
To strengthen the leg muscles you must use a progressive system of weights that will get heavier over time. Start slowly and with light weight and add weight when your repetitions get over ten (10). When you can do ten (10) reps, then start to add weight such as this: If you squat with five Kg. on your shoulders and can do ten (10) reps easily, then add 5 more Kg. and do ten(10) reps. When you can do 10 easily, then add 5 Kg. more. Keep adding weight as you get stronger.

Another example is this:
Dig a hole in the ground to a depth of 3 feet. Jump out of this hole at least 50 times. Then dig it 1 foot deeper and start jumping out of it until you can do this easy. Then dig 1 more foor deeper and jump out until you can do at least 50 of these. Then fill the hole back to a 3 feet depth and add a 25 lb. sack of sand to your back and start jumping out all over again. Keep adding weight and digging hole deeper.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: thank you sir...
so u mean i should stretch and do strength improving drills simultaneously ??? or on differnt days????
sir can i stretch everyday or i should do it a few times in a week....
and i cn do 25 squats with 10kg weight easily but i was a bit afraid that it would spoil my kicks or flexibilty so i used to squat with 5kg weight only.... nd inclined running or walking(on hills).....
sir if i weat leg weights whole day for runing , walking or while am in collge then will it improve my strength??? and i want to aquire speed in my kicks....wil squats and running slow my kicks???

Full splits
Full splits  
Good day to you sir.

You should only do strength training 3 out of the 7 days of the week. You should stretch every day. If you are reading a book or watching a movie or TV or just standing around with nothing else to do, then be stretching.

On the days that you use strengthening exercises, use your light stretching to warm the muscles and ligament/tendons. If you can do 25 squats with 10Kg easily, then add at least 5-10Kg so that you only can do 10 repetitions. When you find that that weight is too easy, then add more. Always challenge your muscles so that they grow and get stronger.

Running up and down stairs with leg weights is very good exercise, but if that gets too easy then add the weight to sacks on your shoulders so that you can add more over time.

The only way to acquire speed in your kicks, is to kick. here are a couple of web pages for you to learn from: (speed kicks)  

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George Petrotta


I am a Korean Martial Artist, with 50+ years experience. I can answer any and all questions on the arts of Hapkido and Taekwondo and Reality based martial arts.


With 50+ years experience and a holder of an 8th Degree in Hapkido and Taekwondo. I have rankings in other martial arts as well. Currently I teach Reality-based training for street self-defense. I only train adults (18 and older.) I also have experience as a Legal Expert Witness in the US Judicial system for Martial Arts and self-defense.

International Director of the International Sungjado Association; Representative of the Universal TKD Brotherhood, Inc.; Member Dojang of the Korean Kukkiwon; Certified Advisor for the Korean Kukkiwon; World TKD Federation


PhD MA Theology PhD MA Science

Awards and Honors
Soke of Sungja-Do from Karate for Christ International; Advisor to KFCI past presidents on Korean Martial Arts.

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