Kickboxing 101

February 9, 2024 | Boxing

The 1960s gave humanity many things. One of our favourites? Kickboxing!

Originating in Japan, the sport came about because Osamu Noguchi, a Japanese boxing promoter, wanted to develop a kind of karate that was full contact. Whether you call kickboxing Karate, Muay Thai, Japanese kickboxing, Lethwei, Sanda, or Savate, you are correct. They are just some of the styles that have evolved over time into the fast-paced, high-contact sport we know today.

Fun and games aside, there are strict rules to be followed by anyone and everyone who wishes to take part in this exhilarating sport. Some of the basics are:

  • There has to be a boxing ring.
  • Fights must be fair so facing opponents in the same weight category is essential.
  • Rounds usually last 3 minutes with a 1 minute break between each round.
  • During the fight the referee will award points to the fighters.

The goal?

The goal in kickboxing is to knock out your opponent or force the referee to stop the fight – the boxer with the most points wins! If both fighters have the same number of points the fight is considered a draw. There are several ways a match can be won:

  • Knockout: When one fighter strikes their opponent in such a way that they cannot continue to fight. The ref counts to 10 and if the opponent does not continue to fight, then the striker becomes the winner of the match.
  • Technical Knockout (TKO): This happens when one fighter is no longer able to defend themselves. A TKO ends the fight on the spot and, you guessed it, the striker wins the match. 
  • Points: The better fighter in each round is awarded 10 points and the other is awarded 9. Throughout the fight the opponents accumulate points. These can determine if there is a winner or if the fight is a draw. 

Why does stance matter?

Perfecting your stance means one thing, better boxing. Your stance is everything. Every move you make starts here. The more technically accurate the better the foundation for your kickboxing. If you feel like you need a helping hand please pop in or give us a call. Next, you want to learn basic punches, kicks and defence positions:

The basic punches:

  • The Jab: Let’s start with what is arguably the most important punch in kickboxing, the Jab. This punch takes place with some distance before striking, providing the fighter with the opportunity to learn proper distance techniques. This means stronger punches. 
  • The cross: This punch is a power-punch for sure and is thrown with the rear hand. The fighter gets into the guard position and then the rear hand is thrown from the chin travelling straight towards the opponent. 
  • The hook: A semi-circular punch thrown with the lead hand to the side of the opponent’s head and down. This punch is usually aimed at the torso. 
  • The uppercut: A vertical, rising punch thrown with the rear hand toward the opponent.

The basic kicks:

  • Front kick: The front kick in kickboxing involves lifting the knee straight forward, extending the leg, and striking the target.
  • Roundhouse kick: This kick uses a wide sweeping motion of the leg and rotation of the body to maximise the impact of the shin hitting the opponent. Please don’t kick with your toes, it doesn’t end well. 
  • Side kicks: This kick is executed by raising the knee of the kicking leg to the side and then extending the leg outwards in a straight line to strike the target with the foot, preferably the heel. 

Key defences Positions:

  • High block: A high block in kickboxing is a defensive move where you raise your arm or leg high (hence the name) to block incoming strikes aimed at the upper part of your body, such as punches or kicks.
  • Low block: In a low block the fighter uses a low stance to protect the lower part of their body, basically the torso or legs, from incoming strikes. It involves using your arms or legs to intercept and deflect kicks or punches aimed at your midsection or lower body.
  • Parries: Parries are your go-to when it comes to defending yourself from high kicks and punches. They quite literally “knock down” your opponents attack.
  • Bobbing/weaving: Weaving (also called bobbing) is a defensive technique that involves moving the upper body in a quick up-and-down motion to evade incoming strikes, such as kicks or punches. This movement helps the fighter avoid direct contact with the opponent’s attacks by dodging them or ducking underneath them while maintaining balance and readiness to counterattack.

Some beginner mistakes:

  • Forgetting to breathe: It’s imperative to watch your inhalation and exhalation. 
  • Going too fast and too hard: It’s tempting to give it all you’ve got right away but slow and steady wins the race. A boxing match requires patience, stamina and strategy. 
  • Obsessively chasing headshots: It’s exciting to be in the ring, we get it. As you grow you will learn that headshots aren’t always the go-to. 
  • Not being consistent: This is our most essential tip for beginners: Growing into yourself as a boxer through dedication and continuous training. 

Kickboxing will literally and metaphorically keep you fighting fit! If you are looking for a confidence boost, to blow off some steam or to lead a healthier life we are right by your side, guiding you every punch on the way.

Other news you might like

5 Muay Thai styles your must know

June 18, 2021 | Training

There are many different styles of Muay Thai, but these five are the most prominent and most important!

Read More

Calorie Burn: Running vs Boxing vs Muay Thai

January 30, 2018 | Training

Boxing classes provide a fun, calorie-burning alternative to monotonous activities like running.

Read More

Boxing footwork ladder drills

April 23, 2019 | Training

Most of the people who start boxing mainly focus on improving the power and quickness of their punches. However, there is an essential factor that they usually neglect. The footwork!

Read More

Join our mailing list

Get access to exclusive offers and up-to-date news.