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Kickboxing fitness advice
Modern competitive kickboxing dates back to the 1970s when it was created in America to allow full-contact kicks and punches banned in traditional karate. There are various different forms of competitive kickboxing today, allowing varying degrees of physical contact between competitors, and regulated by safety rules. Competitors also often wear padding and protective clothing.
Aerobic or cardiovascular kickboxing is a popular form of the sport which combines elements taken from boxing, aerobics and martial arts to create an all-round workout. There is no physical contact in cardio kickboxing, which prioritises body conditioning and toning over competition.
A typical class includes:
This sport is high-impact and high-intensity, so it's not suitable for people who've done no exercise for a while. It's better to start getting in shape with some low impact cardiovascular exercise before you join a class. When you do sign up, work at your own pace and take care not to over-exert and exhaust yourself at first.
- A 10-15 minute warm-up, comprising of stretching, push ups and star jumps
- A 30-minute martial arts session, including movements suck as punches, kicks and knee strikes, and using equipment such as skipping ropes and punch bags.
- A 5-minute cool down
- 10 minutes of stretching and muscle conditioning, to relax muscles and prevent injury. This is particularly important for beginners who risk pulling muscles unfamiliar to the sport