Here’s a quick kumite drill you can use to help your students develop their reaction speed.
You need 3 people for this one to work and your students should stand, so 2 fighters face each other, while the third person stands as shown below. We need a name for that guy, so let’s call him Bob… more about Bob in a moment.
The fighters stand outside of punching range, stationary but ready and focused, like a big cat about to pounce. Bob’s role is to tap one of the fighters on their glove. He might choose to tap either fighter’s front or rear hand. That fighter must immediately slide forward and score their technique to the head or body, then immediately slide back to guard. In the example below Bob tapped the red fighter’s front hand.
Bob might then tap the blue fighter’s reverse hand, in which case he would slide in and make reverse punch.
Now Bob’s job is to keep the fighter’s guessing. He might tap the blue fighter 3 times before tapping the red fighter. Or he might tap the red fighter and then immediately tap the blue fighter on completion of the red fighter’s technique.
Bob can make them wait… tick… tick… tick, or make them work with a series of taps with no downtime. He can mess with the timing and can fake, so the red fighter thinks he’s about to get tapped and then tap the blue fighter instead.
An advanced spin on this is to tap both fighters at the same time and see who scores first. Be careful with this one, of course.
After one minute Bob switches out with one of the fighters and the exercise continues, this time with a new Bob.
This is a great kumite exercise for developing reaction and anticipation skills…
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*** UPDATE : December 20, 2013 ****
Last night I shot a quick video of my junior class doing this drill so you can see it in action… Enjoy!