What is kickboxing? Features, history, benefits and interesting facts

What is kickboxing? Some experts consider it the most spectacular sport. They explain this by the fact that in this martial art there is a symbiosis of strikes (kick) and boxing (boxing). Hence the name. Rules and techniques are taken from boxing, and throws, sweeps and kicks - from martial arts. In this article we will describe in detail what kickboxing is.


This martial art appeared in the 1960s – 70s of the last century. Homeland kickboxing is the United States, as the first competition for diverse fighters "All styles of karate" and "Full-contact karate" took place there. They say that Chuck Norris, the multiple world kickboxing champion, came up with the name for martial arts. At the same time, the competition rules were adopted. At first they were held in America, and then they began to be held in other countries.There were a lot of fans at the tournaments and prize funds were regularly raised.

The champions and Hollywood actors in one guise — Chuck Norris, Benny Urkides and Don Wilson — contributed in many ways to the popularity of kickboxing. A new kind of martial arts has gained fame also because it has absorbed the best of karate, taekwondo, wushu, English and Thai boxing. But kickboxing received audience sympathies for full contact fights: it was not forbidden to beat either the head or the body. On the contrary, it was allowed to do this in full force with both feet and hands. In 1974, the first professional kickboxing federation (RCA) was founded. This year can be considered the official date of the appearance of martial arts. And after only a couple of years, its kickboxing federation (WAKO) appeared in Europe, where this sport quickly took root. Now it is the oldest organization for amateur fighters, bringing together under its auspices 89 countries.

what is kickboxing

Fundamental rules

With respect to the rules, kickboxing has evolved significantly over the years of its existence. At the beginning it was a fixed minimum: throws, trips, grips, undercuts, as well as any strikes with both hands and feet were allowed in the ring.Later they introduced the rule “8 strokes”, when during the round the kickboxer had to inflict at least eight kicks. This would give the fights entertainment. Now the rules have changed in the direction of "6 strokes". Also, the fighters can not conduct throws, grabs and strike with elbow and knee.

At the moment, kickboxing competitions are held taking into account weight categories, which previously simply did not exist. And every two years, amateur fighters take part in world championships and continental championships, where they use the Olympic selection system. But professionals are different. They have the main thing - to prove that you are the best. For this, rating battles are held in each weight category. The one who wins most fights and scores the highest score gets the right to challenge the current kickboxing champion. The fight takes place in the ring. For amateurs, the winner is determined in 3 two-minute rounds, and for professionals - in 6-8 rounds of two minutes. As a rule, the length of the fight for the title of champion is 12 rounds.

kickboxing federation

Schools, Directions, Styles

It is difficult to list all the trends and styles of modern kickboxing.We will call its main varieties, which have significant differences in the rules: they are European, American and Japanese (K-1). Just the last option is the most popular today. K-1 appeared in Japan in 1993, turning traditional kickboxing in this country into one of the most developed martial arts in the world. K-1 is an explosive mixture of taekwondo, sanda, karate and other martial arts.

The organization of kickboxing competitions is the Japanese company FEG (Fighting and Entertainment Group). First, the best fighters are selected on the basis of regional competitions. Well, the winner is determined at the annual K-1 World Grand Prix tournament. And if in Europe this type of martial arts has long been fond of, in the US, the K-1 fights are held exclusively in Las Vegas or Honolulu. In most states they are banned.

kickboxing competition

Japanese kickboxing specifics

What seduces K-1 fans? Fans of Japanese kickboxing can not be precisely defined: it is a spectacle or a sport. K-1 can not be called cruel because of the sufficient number of rules introduced. Fight goes 3 three-minute rounds. If during this time the winner is not determined, a decisive round will be appointed. If both athletes synchronously fell on the canvas and can not get up, a draw is declared.In K-1, the rule of three knockdowns applies. In this case, the victory goes to the technical knockout. The audience is fascinated by what is happening in the ring, because they see how much effort the kickboxers are doing in fights under the auspices of K-1. Draws are quite rare. Most often, one of the athletes is knocked out.

 kickboxing championship


After seeing the kickboxing world championship, you can instantly determine whether he is professional or amateur. In the first case, athletes perform with a bare torso and a minimum of equipment: mouthguards, inguinal shells, foot protectors, gloves and shorts. In the amateur kickboxing championship, shin guards, helmets and T-shirts are added to the listed types of protection. For girls, chest protectors are provided. In amateur fights, remedies are mandatory. Sometimes, upon reaching a mutual agreement, leg protectors are used in professional fights.

kickboxing champion


It is difficult to understand what kickboxing is, until you get acquainted with the technique of this martial art. It includes several sections: protection, sweeps, strikes, movements and racks. In the process of preparing a fighter, each of them is given enough attention.They cannot exist separately, as they are closely interrelated. Technique is a strict system of rules and failure to comply with one immediately entails the failure of the other. For example, the lack of speed prevents the kickboxer from striking effectively and freely. Having noticed this gap in technology, his rival will easily seize the initiative and complete the fight in his favor.

world kickboxing championship


Compared to other martial arts kickboxing uses different loads. And not only those that are aimed at developing muscle mass. Let's take a closer look at what kickboxing is, in terms of its advantages. So, this sport develops:

  • Musculature. Training can take place as a pair or without. At the same time, both mobile and fixed equipment are used: moving targets, shields, makivars, pillows, and so on. All this forms a beautiful musculature. No wonder kickboxers have such an athletic figure.
  • Endurance. Pushups, lunges, squats, practicing punches and kicks - this is not a complete list of exercises that athletes perform in training. They all develop endurance.
  • Coordination. It is developed lessons with high-speed pear. There are two modes of exercise: anaerobic and aerobic. Regardless of the type of kickboxing they are used simultaneously. For example, jogging is an aerobic exercise, and jumping with a rope falls into the category of anaerobic exercise. The predominance of a particular regime will depend on the personal goals of the athlete.
  • Flexibility. Exercises for this quality are required in kickboxing. They make the shots better and more accurate.
  • Motoriki. It develops active movement around the ring. The fighter is in motion constantly.

Thus, kickboxing training develops qualities that may well be useful in everyday life. In addition, it is an excellent prevention of stress.

world kickboxing champion

Interesting Facts

From English, the word "kickboxing" is translated as "fight with kicks."

Female kickboxing dates back to 1985.

In 1989, the picture “Kickboxer” with Michel Cassie and Jean-Claude Van Damme appeared on the screens. Mark Dacascos starred in the fifth part of this film.

At one time, Alexander Povetkin and Vitali Klitschko played in kickboxing.

In the second half of the 20th century, cinema actively developed in America.Particularly popular at that time were the militants, whose star was Bruce Lee. In this regard, many retired kickboxers turned into actors, stuntmen and stunt directors. They regularly showed on the screen techniques of their style.

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