Cardio Kickboxing – What is it?… And My Experience

cardio kickboxing gym class

If you’re looking for a no equipment, high intensity, carb burning workout. You should give cardio kickboxing a try. I wanted to try a different workout from what I’d normally do with boxing and thought this might be a fun alternative.

It gave me some nostalgia of when P90x and infomercial type workouts were selling like hotcakes. Prior to trying this type of work out at home,

Cardio kickboxing is a style of high intensity and cardio focussed workout that incorporates various styles of martial arts. Considered a full body work out that keeps your body in constant motion through different types of punch and kicks. Cardio Kickboxing helps improve stamina, coordination and flexibility all while burning calories.

I’m more accustomed to workouts that mimic a boxing match. Meaning three minutes of workout and one minute of cool down. Cardio Kickboxing was constant movement for the 20-30 minutes and it “kickboxed” my ass.

What Is Cardio Kickboxing

When I was first introduced to cardio kickboxing, I had no idea what it really was. I wasn’t even sure if it was related to kickboxing.

Didn’t take long after some brief research to find that its a style of aerobic fitness which includes a heavy amount of arms, legs, knee strikes similar to the kickboxing discipline. Typically this is something an instructor would lead a class at your local gym or you could follow along a video at home.

Similar to aerobic exercises that consists of walking on the spot and jumping jacks. Cardio Kickboxing kicks it up a notch and incorporates martial arts into the mix.

Is Cardio Kickboxing A Good Workout

Coming from someone who never trained in kickboxing as a workout or fight training. I really didn’t know what to expect. I wanted to try workouts that both utilize my boxing gear and one that doesn’t.

woman sweating

And being that I didn’t know how to kick box, I turned to the information hub that is Youtube to find videos I could follow along with.

I chose two highly ranked video with workouts that are about 20-25 minutes long. One that you can use gloves and a punching bag and one that requires zero equipment.

I chose one workout per day over two days and both workouts proved to be pretty challenging and left me sweaty and winded.

Both workout utilized punches and kicks but in different ways.

For the workout that didn’t require equipment, it seemed like a lighter paced, non stop shadow boxing workout. Closer to an aerobic exercise where someone would count down how many kicks are left in the routine.

The intensity wasn’t at a level I would have preferred, but that can easily be fixed dependant on how much energy you would want to put in yourself.

If you’re wondering if you would learn any real kickboxing technique with this exercise I would suggest to go with an actual kickboxing class or an on demand service like FightCamp.

Following along with one of the free FightCamp videos for cardio kickboxing, was more something up my alley.

Although not necessary, being able to use my gloves and punching bag was more a fulfilling experience for me. They also structured the workout as per boxing rounds where there were a few minutes of intense workout and one minute rest.

The intensity level of these exercises were much higher. And having to hit the bag gave more of a workout to my arms and legs. I feel it was more beneficial when having to learn the kickboxing combinations and repurpose it into a workout.

Do You Need Equipment For Cardio Kickboxing

This type of workout is popular as classes in local gyms or on demand at home. I would imagine more often than not they are more of an aerobic workout rather than for fight training.

With that said, getting a workout through cardio kickboxing requires no specific equipment at all.

As long as you have enough space to move around, punch and kick is really all you need to benefit from it.

But of course, it really depends on what your goal is. Are you looking for just another way to get a full body work out in? Or are you looking for something more fight sport oriented.

I think deciding between those two options would make a significant difference. On one hand its a free way to complete a daily workout, pretty much anywhere you want. On the other, some investment may be needed to be able to get the full experience.

My recommendation would be to opt for a relatively small investment and reward with yourself with some kind of boxing gym, it doesn’t have to be one complete with hanging bags and speed bags.

Just a freestanding bag with gloves in the corner of your basement or garage would be plenty. You can check out exactly what you would need here in a previous article.

kickbox training

Does Cardio Kickboxing Teach You How To Fight

Cardio Kickboxing is a fitness program mainly created as a workout routine. Repetition of kicking and punching may help your body get accustomed to the actions. But in a real fight situation I would think it does little to nothing in preparation for it.

Although you would be completing a lot of the action. Getting the basics down of kickboxing is none existent. There is no part in learning how to channel powerful kicks and punches or keeping good kickboxing form.

If learning the combat skill and getting a workout is what you want. The recommendation would be to enroll in a kickboxing class at your local gym or follow a on demand platform that focusses on kickboxing rather then kickboxing as fitness.

Learning how to kickbox would already be a workout in itself, due to the numerous workouts that come with training your stamina, strength and mind.

Can You Lose Weight

Including cardio kickboxing in your workout routine and staying consistent with it, would be effective for weight loss. Calories burned are comparable to going for a run in the same amount of time. And pending you stay within your diet goals this could be a good choice.

Something that helps cardio kickboxing outweigh running is that you would be using more of your body. Working everything from arms down.

It would also be an opportunity to tone your arms and mid section as cardio kickboxing would include elements of ab and arm workouts. Something running would provide on its own.

A problem from keeping you going with this type of workout would be keeping the exercise fresh and fun. Following the top Youtube videos can get pretty repetitive and in the long term wouldn’t give you much of a workout if you’re coming around for the 100th time.

If you’re looking to really commit and workout from home, consider joining on demand programs like FightCamp and Title boxing club on demand.


I found this to be a great routine to include into an ordinary workout when you’re looking to have some cardio work in.

If running is not your thing or you need to break a sweat and want to stay at home. Cardio Kickboxing could be your answer. If you enjoyed P90x or Shaun T’s Insanity you would likely get a lot out of it.

To tone your muscles more and get more out of this workout, consider getting some basic boxing equipment. Especially a punching bag that is large enough to allow you to kick at.

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