Is Kickboxing A Good Workout?

man after kickboxing workout

Is Kickboxing a good workout? A great way to stay active and have fun at the same time is by finding a exercise routine that you enjoy and does not become stale quickly. The thought of going into my home gym or a local one and using the same equipment over and over is just not appealing.

So I looked into other forms of fitness exercises. Playing sports was a viable option, building a team and getting their commitment proved to be a bit more work than its worth. I needed something where I can hold myself accountable and myself only. What jumped out to me on the top of the list was kickboxing. It’s very active, high cardio and builds muscles. Sounds perfect right? After a few months this is what I have found.

Kickboxing is a great full body workout. While utilizing various parts of your body in the same exercise. Kickboxing brings a high intensity aerobic workout that will burn calories, elevate your heart rate and build muscles in the same routine. A versatile option as you are able to get great training with or without equipment and at any location you see fit.

woman kickboxing

What Is Kickboxing

Although similar to other forms of disciplines such as Muay Thai. Kickboxing primarily focuses on punches and kicks, where as the others have incorporate the use of elbows and knees as well as grappling.

A sport that was developed in the late 1950’s. Kickboxing is a combat sport professionally fought in a boxing ring. Kickboxing is a 4 point striking system that allows the use of punches like in boxing and kicks such as karate. This discipline is widely adopted in the modern day for self defense, overall health and fitness as well as competition.

Over the years, many fitness instructors have adopted this art form into many aerobic exercises such as cardio kickboxing.

Benefits Of A Kickboxing Workout

Its great when you find a workout routine that brings more value then just physical fitness. Of course, staying healthy and getting fit should be the main goal. But why not find something that can satisfy other areas of your life at the same time? Here are some of the benefits that come with kickboxing workouts.

  1. Stress Relief – being a contact sport, kickboxing naturally will help in getting out everyday frustrations that everyone experiences. Having the ability to punch and kick a heavy bag or even if you’re shadow kick boxing, is a simple way to release the tension and energy that you may be carrying.
  2. Muscle Toning – kickboxing is a great aerobic workout. But what you may not realize is that with consistent bag work or sparring. The resistance of the bag and the force of your hits helps build and tone the muscles in your arms and legs. Adding boxing gloves or wrist/ankle weights also will help get the resistance your need to build muscle.
  3. Cardio – as mentioned, kickboxing is a high intensity sport. When training you will likely be required to be in constant motion moving around a bag or opponent. You will also be utilizing punches and kicks and when put altogether, this style of workout will guarantee to break a sweat and gasping for air.
  4. Burns Calories – although calories burnt differs from person to person. You can expect to have 300-500 calories burned per 30 minute work out. And about 900 calories for every kickboxing workout that lasts an hour.
  5. Learn a new skill – imagine getting a work out that gets you fit and gives you a skillset. Having kickboxing as a work out will also help your understanding of some basic self defence and build confidence.

These are just some benefits that come along with kickboxing. To really get all the value, you would just need to give it try. And if traditional kickboxing may seem a bit intimidating to you. This combat sport has been adopted into a fitness format over the years. And may be a more friendly approach.

Types of Kickboxing workouts

Although there are various ways to enjoy kickboxing less as a combat sport and more as a workout. We will primarily look at some of the more popular options.

Shadow Kickboxing

Shadow kickboxing is the act of kickboxing without any equipment or opponent in front of you. You will imagine the fight happening in your head, and move your body, throw kicks and punches to the imaginary opponent in front of you.

If you’re a beginner, this would be a great time to start focusing in on your form and learning the motions that come with kickboxing. Having a large mirror in front can help and being able to get a real visual of how you’re doing will allow you to adjust and correct your technique.

To make sure you have a good experience. Plan to have a large enough amount of open space when before starting your kickboxing exercise. An empty room or going outside would be the ideal. But if its not something that is possible, make sure to have at least 5-7 feet of open floor space where you can move freely in all directions. Tables, chairs and other heavy furniture should be moved out of the way or even out of the room to prevent injuries.

Cardio Kickboxing

group cardio kickboxing

Cardio Kickboxing will be more fitness exercise oriented and less of a fighting style. Often more popular in a group or class setting. You can find many gyms with fitness instructors to lead the class or find video on demand services as well as channels on Youtube.

Similar to shadow kickboxing, this cardio version does not typically involve any equipment. And is still a complete body workout that involves punches, kicks and knees to complete a very fast paced aerobic training.

If fitness is your only goal. Cardio Kickboxing would be a great option to build stamina, improve coordination and flexibility. All while burning calories and building lean muscle with a fun highly demanding workout.


Fast paced, high intensity and fun. All elements that would make any work out fulfilling and enjoyable. Kickboxing is know as a contact sport loved by millions around the world. But it is also something anyone can enjoy in the comfort of their own home.

Kickboxing can combine the world of fitness and combat sports into a complete full body workout that we all crave for. To get started you don’t have to even leave your home. There are great apps and online resources such as Fight Camp and Title Boxing Club that are subscription based. Or you can enjoy free options on Youtube.

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