|This article is about a/an recurring signature rider attack in the Kamen Rider Series.|
The Rider Kick (ライダーキック Raidā Kikku) is the signature finishing move of the Kamen Rider Series. It has traditionally consisted of a flying side kick and is used against the monster after it has been weakened from fighting with the Rider. Throughout the various Kamen Rider series, it has taken many different forms and has become somewhat less prominent among Rider attacks as of the Heisei Era. Despite this, the Rider Kick remains one of the more well-known staples of the franchise.
It is similar to the Ultraman Series' Ultra Beam, being a well known and main finisher, especially it being used by the main Showa heroes.
Some modern iterations of Kamen Rider TV shows showcase how the Rider Kick works visually. When the Rider activates a function on their belt, the power from it is channeled down the leg(s) and surges into the foot or both feet. After striking the target, the energy is very quickly released into the monster via the force of the impact, causing a chain reaction that makes the monster explode. Another, albeit non-canon, explanation was given in the Kamen Rider ZO manga, as a martial arts instructor described it as the manipulation of one's own ki energy into a focused point of the body to strike the critical weak point of an opponent.
- Flying Side Kick (aka Flying Kick or Jump Kick) - A standard flying kick. The Rider either jumps or flips towards the monster and finishes with a side kick. This is the most commonly-used kicking style for a Rider Kick.
- Corkscrew Kick (aka Screw Kick, Drill Kick or Spiral Kick) - Similar to any flying kick variants such as Flying Side Kick or Drop Kick, but the Rider will spin while executing the attack.
- Flying Front Kick (aka Jumping Front Kick, Bicycle Kick or Push Kick) - The Rider normally leaps forward and is facing the monster while performing multiple front kicks while one leg is tucked in a bicycle fashion.
- Axe Kick - The Rider jumps up and the kick strikes downward with the heel of the foot at the adversary. Sometimes a Rider may flip and strike with his toes (variation).
- Drop Kick - The Rider will leap into the air and then drop down onto the monster, kicking it with both feet together. It has several variations, a front drop kick (a style used by Shadowmoon), a side dropkick (such as the one used by Kamen Rider Black RX), and a heel dropkick (the style used by Kamen Rider Garren which closely resembles an axe kick variation).
- Spinning Heel Kick - A kick where a Rider turns their body 360 degrees before landing the heel or the ball of the foot to the target. The Rider may also do it in mid-air.
- Scissor Kick (or Leg Scissors) - The Rider either jumps or flips towards the monster and will finish with a scissor kick or headscissors.
- Flying Knee Kick - An attack which the Rider jumps and strikes his enemy knee-first.
- Side Kick - An attack which a Rider runs/walks/stands and turn 90 degrees before making a single side step towards enemy and kick with the nearest foot.
- Tornado Kick (aka Cyclone Kick, 540 Spin Kick, or Flying Inward Crescent) - A variant of a flying roundhouse kick; however, the area of impact varies (ie instep, heel, arc, etc).
- Roundhouse Kick - The attack where the rider attacks the foe with a forward spinning round kick.
- Jumping Roundhouse Kick - Same with roundhouse kick, but the Rider will jump before doing a mid-air "side bicycle roundhouse" kick.
- Slide Kick - A kick where the Rider slides toward an enemy then kicks with the foot on the top side.
Behind the Scenes
A Rider Kick is executed in a variety of ways when filming a scene. The most common is a suit actor doing a running start onto a trampoline, bouncing into the air off of it and stretching the legs out into a kicking position and then landing safely on a foam mat. The cameramen then edit the footage to make it seem more dynamic. In the Making of Kamen Rider ZO, other methods shown to perform the Kick were wire stunt work and recording a suit actor doing a high jump off a platform while in a kicking position and filming a fraction of the stunt before they land safely onto a padded foam mat.
Shows like Kamen Rider V3 where the hero utilized more complex movements like body rotation or rebounding off the target used a combination of the standard method combined with wire work. More recent series and movies utilize green screen and CGI for the effects, while the suit actor still does a majority of the stunt work.