Focus pads that can record the quantity and speed of your strikes.
Available from: WWW.IMPTEC.CO.UK
£139.99 (price correct as of 16/02/15)
In all our classes we use focus pads because in street fights the range is often a conversational range. This range happens to be punching range and so it makes sense to be efficient with your hands. These Imptec focus pads have been designed to provide instructors and students instant feedback so they can track their progress in the quality, quantity, and speed of their striking.
The Imptec focus pads come as a set of two pads, one held on each hand. These pads are flat, round in shape and lightweight. The strike counter / timing box fits comfortably on the right forearm of the pad holder. The box is battery powered and comfortable to wear. We bought ours approximately 7 years ago at Seni, a martial arts expo and they are still accurate to this day. The pads allow the following:
- Counts the number of good strikes in a time period (up to 90 seconds)
- Times a preset number of strikes (up to 990) to nearest 1/10th of a second (up to 99.9 seconds)
- Times a preset combination (up to 9 strikes) to nearest 1/100th of a second
If you’re a student of WingTsun looking to increase your speed then these pads will be an exceptional training tool. Likewise if you’re an instructor looking to create a friendly competitive environment in your school then these pads can help you achieve that. Both come with a word of warning though, inevitable at some point you will try to surpass your previous best and will sacrifice technique for speed. This will become apparent when you’re performing your Lin Wan Kuen (chain punches) and find the skin around your knuckles shredding and weeping. This is because instead of performing your chain punches in a back and forth motion similar to a piston you have begun dropping your hands under one another like a cycling motion. Never sacrifice technique for speed.
Once again in our opinion the classic focus pad is still our ‘go to’ piece of equipment for striking. These Imptec focus pads can certainly be used in training though. This pad is ideal for beginner to intermediate students looking to practice their chain punching and develop an overwhelming offensive action. It is also ideal for children’s classes as a way of strenuous exercise whilst having fun. Advanced students though should begin to concentrate their efforts on the skill that beats speed; timing! Technique and timing is the mark of a master, brute strength and speed is for those starting out.
There are plenty of tips to share when it comes to holding focus pads but we could only choose one. When holding the pads it is important to provide resistance for your training partner. You should not allow your partner to be knocking your arms backwards. If this happens it is likely because you are not offering resistance. As your partner punches you should push slightly forward. This will decrease the likelihood of an injury to both parties and provide better feedback to the puncher.