The lead leg round kick can be executed in a variety of ways depending on your goal. There are many types of lead leg round kicks however most can be divided into three different types:
- Quick low power kick keeping the guard up
- Quick medium power kick swinging one arm
- Slower high power by doing a “switch” kick
The quick low power kick while keeping the guard up is the fastest way to execute a lead leg kick. The kick is used much like a jab. The guard stays up and the body does not lean. The point of this kick is to judge distance and also can be used to disrupt the opponents rhythm. This kick is best used as a part of a combination. This kick is typically used only leg and to the face. It does not generate enough power to be effective against the body.
The quick medium power kick is similar to the 1st kick but it is executed by dropping one hand. The reason one drops one hand (arm) while doing a kick is to add power and for leverage.
Technically speaking Thai boxers do not drop their hand but rather swing their arm. This is done for three reasons:
- To generate more power
- To help the Thai boxer maintain his/her balance
- The arm can also be used to brush your opponents guard away to to interfere with his/her vision
The important thing to remember when swinging the arm is to keep the shoulder up so that it guards the chin. It is a similar position to the arm down style that some boxers use. Due to the proximity to the opponent while executing this kick many Muay Thai boxers lean to get their head off line.
This kick can be used for any target but is most often done to the leg of the opponent.
The slower high power “switch” kick is done by switching you feet quickly to bring the lead leg to the rear. The reason that a Thai boxer does this is to generate even more power and also this can be done to gain an advantageous angle on the opponent. The term “slower” is relative term since this kick is executed as fast as possible and the switch only takes a fraction of a second.
During this kick the arm is swung the same as in the quick medium power kick. This kick can be executed to any part of the opponent but is very effective as a body strike.