Gear Up


Gear Up

By: D Norfolk elementalkickboxing, kickboxingleeds, sparringkit

Gear Up

“Failing To Prepare Is Preparing To Fail” (Benjamin Franklin1, writer, scientist, inventor, statesman, diplomat, printer, publisher, and political philosopher. 18th Century)

A well-used but often overlooked quote to start us off, but there is a lot of truth in those words. Think how many times you have meant to get something out, put something off till tomorrow or generally ‘mañana, mañana’d something. The same result always happens, you rush, you are not comfortable, you have the wrong thing, you can’t do something you needed to do. We may at all be at fault sometimes.

Accepting this general failure in the human condition, but why are you mentioning this here. Are you criticising me for my lack of kicking practise, no, are you telling me I should get to class earlier, no.

My little tale today is about correct kit, don’t groan I heard you groaning, stop it. Let me tell you why this is important. It’s important because we don’t not just believe in protecting you, yes you there thinking about what have I forgotten. It protects those around you too. Ahhh now you see the altruistic nature of my scribbling. Because as someone else also said ‘every action has an equal and opposite reaction’.

Let me explain in this set of examples below

Headguard (which covers the top of your head with padding)

Why? Because yes it stops you taking hard hits that may damage your pretty face or damage that brain of yours. It also protects the opponent from damaging their hands and feet. But also, the aspects of them knocking you out and feeling super bad about it.


Why? Well stops me getting my teeth knocked out. No, only partially, yes it holds our teeth in a place where we can find them if they do get knocked out, but it also firms the jaw and it stops our opponent hurting their hands on the teeth they may knock out.

Boxing gloves (minimum 10oz children 10 years old and above/6oz 9 years old and under)

Why? They cushion both sets of hands when striking hard parts of the body like the head. Those evolved phalanges were meant for complex manipulation not jabbing against hard objects. That means: no point fighting gloves, no bag gloves, no MMA5 gloves.

Cup/Box (optional)

Why? This one is the only discretionary item, but you do so at your own peril. This protects the very precious areas, man or woman. As it is no fun to get hit in the groin. I speak from experience.

Shin and foot guards

Why? In kickboxing and karate, the main power kicks will be delivered with the top of the foot, i.e., the round house. The pads will partially protect you from hard points you may strike or if you catch a blocking elbow. But it will protect your opponent somewhat, if you are indeed a beast.

Foot guards

Why? You already have on your shin and instep protectors, but these cover the rest if the foot for all of the other kicks you may wish to complete. Such as the round house, axe, outside and inside crescent, side thrust kicks and hook kicks.

That is why these pads should cover all surfaces of your foot, not like Thai pads where the heal of the foot can remain unopen. These pads will keep your foot somewhat safe and also protect your opponent.

Chest Protection (optional)

If you are a lady, as I am led to believe it is no fun to get hit in the chest. I don’t know any club members that where one currently, but that option is open to you.

This is of course your safety kit for you and your opponent, but it is worth mentioning having full club kit and belt for sparring will help your opponent understand what level they should be training at. But this is the minimum. All of this kit is available from the club.

But on closing, do prepare, make sure your bag has the right kit for your safety and that of others, because you do not want to intentionally or unintentionally injure your training partners, after all we are a team and aim to build long term sparring partners, work with us. Be nice and be safe.



2 https://www.collinsdictionary....

3 https://www.physicsclassroom.c...