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Listen, grasshopper

Posted by Musashi on January 26, 2004

In Reply to: Roundhouse punch posted by Bruce Kahl on January 25, 2004

: : : ...delivers a crushing round house to the action genre.

: : : What does "delivers a crushing round house" means?

: : It probably refers to a "roundhouse punch." I tried to find an origin of that specific term and couldn't. However, I am guessing that the origin is round house (railroad term)/ roundhouse curve (baseball term)/roundhouse punch.

: : ROUND HOUSE - A railroad term for "a circular building concentric with the center of a turntable on which railroad engines are turned, cleaned, and repaired, 1850s." From "I Hear America Talking" by Stuart Berg Flexner (Von Nostrand Reinhold Co., New York, 1976). And there's a baseball term: ".roundhouse curve in the late 1890s, when it was also called a 'barrel hoop curve.' Christy Mathewson's outcurve was called a 'barrel hoop curve'." From "

: A round-house kick is peformed by rotating the non-kicking leg so that the toes point backwards, bringing the kicking knee toward the target and snapping the foot forward striking with the instep or in some cases the ball of the foot.
in karate, the round-house punch or kick is distinguishable from the norm - the norm is for the kicks and punches to be delivered in a straight line - which is one of the reasons why in 'way of the dragon' (the one set in Rome) Bruce Lee using his jeet-kun-do which is based on kung-fu - a rotary style of martial art - beats Chuck Norris using the more direct karate. at lower levels, karate is more predictable than kung-fu although can have more power. (I once fought a practitioner of kung-fu who left me more confused than beaten as he did not come straight at me like a karateka would and it took a while to get any kind of attack on target.)

a 'roundhouse' punch is delivered in an arc - so that it goes 'round the houses' before hitting - it uses the rotary motion of the upper body which ideally should begin in the hips (as almost all good punches should - the exception being 'snap punches' where whiplash of the limb itself delivers the extra momentum). Bruce Lee himself had not perfected the '2 inch punch' but knew that if he were to do it, the hips would play a part in delivering the blow. to strike with almost no movement is one of the ideals of the unarmed martial arts.

a round-house kick starts with the weapon leg to the rear of the standing leg - the kicker swings the hips round in the direction of the target, the knee follows behind at target height (usually midriff) and then the lower leg with the foot folded back to that the top of the foot is the area that strikes the target. when aiming a r-h kick to head height all you can do is to pivot so that the parabola of the limb is as close to a circle as possible - making a tangent just behind the target so that the limb is still travelling when it hits and like a good stroke 'follows through'.

the greatest warrior never has to fight...