Marine Corps Martial Arts Tan Belt - Hammer Fist

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Marine Corps Martial Arts Tan Belt - Hammer Fist

This section focuses on tan belt techniques used by the Marine Corps martial arts program. This page examines the hammer fist technique used in the Marine Corps martial arts program. To learn about other martial arts hand strikes, please visit the main Punches & Hand Strikes section. Information from Public Domain Document, MCRP 3-02B, Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP).

For more Marine Corps techniques, please visit the main Marine Corps Martial Arts Program section.

Hammer Fist

Striking with the hammer fist concentrates power in a small part of the hand which, when transferred to the target, can have a devastating effect.

Striking Surface

The striking surface of the hammer fist is the meaty portion of the hand below the little finger.

Target Areas of the Body

The primary target areas of the body are the arm and leg joints, the neck, the head, the ribs, and the kidneys.

Angles of Attack

The hammer fist can be thrown horizontally or vertically:

  • When thrown horizontally, the hammer fist strike gets its power from hip and shoulder rotation.
  • When thrown vertically, the hammer fist strike comes straight down in a straight line and gets its power from dropping your weight into the aggressor by bending the knees and transferring your weight from high to low.


  • From the basic warrior stance, make a fist. Retract your right hand so that your fist is next to your face and neck. Your arm is bent at approximately a 45- to 90-degree angle.
  • Simultaneously, rotate your right hip and right shoulder backwards.
  • Thrust your fist forward onto the aggressor while rotating your right hip and shoulder forward.
  • Rotate your wrist so that the hammer fist makes contact on the aggressor. Contact should be made with the meaty portion of your hand below the little finger.
  • Follow through the primary target area with your fist.
  • Return to the basic warrior stance.

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  1. Information from Public Domain Document, MCRP 3-02B, Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP),, Added - 02/18/15

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