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Krav Maga Video
Forward Hammerfist
Starting Position


Using the correct starting position for the Forward Hammerfist is essential. A correct starting position allows for maximum speed/power in the strike while minimizing how much you're telegraphing the strike to the attacker. This video explains all the details to the correct starting position and common mistakes to avoid.


Transcript:

"Hello, this is Randall, this is BOB, with KravMagaTraining.com. In this video we're going to discuss the correct starting position for the Forward Hammerfist. The reason why I'm coveirng the starting position is because I found when I teach new Level 1 students this technique, this is the part of the Forward Hammerfist that they make the most mistakes with.

Okay. Let me explain what the correct starting position is. So I'm in my fighting stance. What I want to do is I want to take my fist, put it close to my ear like this. I want to take my palm and I want to turn it towards my target and my elbow goes off to the side in line with the side of my shoulder. So this is the correct starting position.

Now this position is important for a few reasons. One is I don't want to have my hand go too far past my ear. When I start doing this, yeah, I will get more power but I'm also telegraphing my intentions to my opponent so they have more time to react to defend it. Also, the farther my hand goes back the more distance it takes to travel to get to the target which means it's a slower technique. So what I want to do is bring it a little bit closer. But at the same time I don't want it in front of my face like this either because, yeah, I'm quicker but I won't have as much power. So I found this is kind of a happy medium, just like this. And also it tends to protect the side of my face. So I'm in my fighting stance, my chin's down, my shoulders are up. With my hand here it's just going to protect me that much we well, better. So that's the correct starting position.

Now let me explain a few more things about this starting position that are important. First of all, the palm. The reason why I like the palm facing towards the target like this is it allows you when you deliver the strike to rotate the fist over at the last split-second before you hit the target. This little rotation adds a little bit more speed and snap to the strike. The elbow position needs to be off to the side because it creates a whipping effect. A common beginner mistake is they keep their elbow in like this and they just do the hammering motion. Which is okay but when you take your elbow and put it off to the side it allows you to drive your elbow down as you extend your arm out which gives it a little bit more speed and snap. Similar to a whip. This is just a hammering motion. This is a whipping motion with a hammering motion. That will give you a little extra 'oomph' as well.

Now here's the thing is, this is your starting position but you don't want your elbow going too far back like this. Even though my hands, once again, the farther my elbow goes back the more I'm telegraphing my intentions. It should be in line with the shoulder. However, the shoulders themselves are allowed to rotate. So instead of like this, I can turn my whole body like this. So technically my elbow is still off to the side of my shoulder. And then from here, I can twist my shoulders, twist my hips, pivot my back foot. So I'm not telegraphing too much but I'm still maximizing my power. So those are all the reasons that you want to, the reasons why you want to start in the correct position.

One thing that, a couple of things that you want to avoid that I see that are real common mistakes is one, when people are trying to hit really hard they tend to do this circular motion like this. Once again, they are getting a lot of power but when you wind up way back far like this, once again, you're telegraphing what you're doing. You're not protecting yourself, and also, this big downward motion up, it's going to be easier for the person to recognize it and see it coming. So avoid this big circular movement. It should be from this position, hit, straight back. Hit, straight back.

And another problem that I see is even when students do get the technique, this Forward Hammerfist done correctly on the pads, when it's time to do it with their self-defense techniques, all that good technique tends to go out the window for some reason. I'll give you an example is, we're in a position to finish the fight. I've got the bad guy hunched over. Maybe I'm grabbing their hair. The correct technique is I'm supposed to be like this. Driving my hammerfist to the back of the neck. What I see a lot of beginners do, especially when they are doing the technique slowly when they are first learning it, they get in this position to finish and they just do this. This little stupid arm motion. My nickname for this is what I like to call 'jerk-off' or 'jack-off' hammerfists because it just looks like you were jerking somebody off. Fuck that shit. If you're going to throw a strike make sure you throw it correctly. Once again, correct starting position. Twist your hips. Make each shot count. Even if you're practicing slowly and you don't want to hurt your partner, don't practice with poor technique. Even if I'm doing it slowly, notice I'm still doing the technique correctly that way I'm developing good habits and good muscle memory. So like I said, even if you're doing the technique slow, do it correctly, and that rule applies to any strike. Whether you're hitting hard or not, always practice with good form.

So anyways. Those are the keys to the correct starting position for a Forward Hammerfist. Make sure you do them correctly when you're working on the pad, but also make sure you're working it properly when you're tying it in with your self-defense techniques. So I hope these suggestions help and, once again, thanks for watching."


"Technique is noticed most markedly in the case of those who have not mastered it." -Leon Trotsky




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