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A dropkick is an attacking maneuver in wrestling. It is defined as an attack where the wrestler jumps up and kicks the opponent with the soles of both feet, this sees the wrestler twist as they jump so that when the feet connect with the opponent one foot is raised higher than the other (depending on which way they twist) and the wrestler falls back to the mat on their side, or front. This is commonly employed by light and nimble wrestlers who can take advantage of their agility, and is often executed on a charging opponent, or while charging at an opponent.
The most basic form of a dropkick, but potentially the hardest to pull off, is a standing dropkick where the wrestler catches a standing or running opponent with a standard dropkick from a standing position. In order to be pulled off effectively, it requires great leg strength in order to gain elevation.
The dropkick is said to have been invented by Abe Coleman, and made popular by Antonino Rocca. Many other users have adopted the basic standing dropkick as a signature move.
On the other hand, Erik Watts once performed a dropkick that was so low (barely reaching his opponent's thighs) and unconvincing that some observers referred to it as more of a belly flop than a dropkick, and others sarcastically suggested a "Watts Scale" for botched dropkicks akin to the "Muta Scale" used for rating bladejobs.
Despite its normal application as a staged attack in pro wrestling, dropkicks have occasionally been used in mixed martial arts competition by fighters such as Ikuhisa Minowa, though usually with only limited noticeable effect on the recipient.
The wrestler runs and slides feet first at the opponent, kicking them with both feet, like a baseball player sliding into a base. It is usually performed by a wrestler in the ring or on the ring apron against the head or upper torso of a wrestler standing outside of the ring.
A baseball slide can also be used to counter an Irish whip, as the whipped wrestler slides before they can hit the ropes, and it can be used to slide under an opponent, by going between his/her legs.
The wrestler sets up the opponent, usually seated at a corner turnbuckle and hits him with a dropkick. The most common variation of this is a rope aided version, which is most notably used by WWE wrestler Jeff Hardy as a signature move. The wrestler uses the ring ropes to elevate his body, connecting with a dropkick to the opponent's chest upon landing. Kazarian uses the corner dropkick on an opponent followed by kip-up. Evan Bourne slingshots in from the ring apron before connecting with the dropkick. This is not to be confused with the Corner-to-Corner missile dropkick. The two-man version of this dropkick is best known as Poetry in Motion.
A front dropkick is an attack where the wrestler jumps up and kicks forward so that they hit the opponent with the soles of both feet, without twisting like a normal dropkick, this enables the wrestler to fall backwards to the mat, landing on their upper back and shoulder area.
This is often used to attack lower parts of the opponent than the normal dropkick. A low version of this move can also be known as a Basement Dropkick. This move is also used when charging at an opponent is sitting or kneeling on the ground so that the feet will connect with the opponent's head. Dolph Ziggler is seen to use this on every match of him, he called it "The Perfect Dropkick".
Also known as a diving dropkick, a missile dropkick is an attack where the wrestler jumps off the top turnbuckle and executes the dropkick on a standing opponent.
Corner-to-corner missile dropkick
In the variant, the attacking wrestler first places an opponent so they are sat on the mat in one of the corners of ring before then ascending to the top rope/second rope of the corner at the opposite end of the ring ropes. From here the wrestler leaps the length or width of the ring, and performs a front dropkick to the opponent. Shane McMahon calls this move the Coast to Coast.
Often this will see a weapon, or foreign object, placed in front of the opponent's head usually wedged between the bottom and middle rope of the ring. Rob Van Dam popularized the move in the U.S. under the name the Van Terminator hitting a chair into the opponent's face, when he doesn't have assistance from a tag team partner or manager he sometimes takes the weapon with him when executing the jump. Shane McMahon has also further popularized this move, with the use of a trash can.
Also known as a standing moonsault; a dropsault is an attack where the wrestler jumps up and kicks the opponent with both feet and then executes a backflip, landing on the mat chest-first. The move was popularized by Paul London. Sometimes this move can see the wrestler land chest-first on another opponent. Many wrestlers perform this move with great care, as any slight twist in their body can injure them.
Single leg running dropkick
In this dropkick an attacking wrestler runs towards an opponent and jumps up sideways striking an opponent's head or chin with the sole of their highest foot. Samoa Joe is known for using a variation of this known as a single leg front dropkick where he jumps up but not to his side. This version can also be described as a jumping big boot.
This is a springboard version of the missile dropkick. Most notably used by Chris Jericho, the most common springboard dropkick involves the attacker springing off the adjacent ropes before connecting with the dropkick. Since Jericho's opponent is on the ring apron, the opponent is sent out of the ring upon impact.
- The Professional Wrestlers' Workout & Instructional Guide - Harley Race, Ricky Steamboat, Les Thatcher, and Alex Marvez pg. 66