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December 2016

Kickboxing Your Way to a Buff Body

By Michael George

kick-punch-fitness

Imagine a world where throwing punches and kicks is not only socially acceptable but considered a self-improvement project.  Aerobic endurance, muscle strength, power, coordination, balance—and reduced body fat and better mental concentration? Nirvana.

Whether you are just starting out or are an extreme fitness buff, kickboxing is an exceptional workout.  You can monitor the intensity of your workouts by simply increasing or decreasing the number, speed, and intensity of punches thrown. A good kickboxing instructor will help determine your level and teach you proper punching mechanics and stance.

Kickboxing increases:

  • cardiovascular stamina and endurance
  • heart muscle strength
  • muscle strength and tone of the shoulders, biceps, and triceps
  • muscle strength in latissimus dorsi, deltoids, and pectorals with increased punching power
  • torso and abdominal strength and tone through trunk rotation
  • leg strength through push-off power when throwing punches
  • balance, coordination, maneuverability, and dexterity

What You Need: Kickboxing Equipment

The best shoes for kickboxing are high-top cross trainers or high-top wrestling shoes.  These provide the best ankle support and have a strong base to prevent ankle inversion or aversion.

Get Your Kicks:

Keep all kicks low and slow initially, increasing height and speed as you become more proficient.  Never extend your leg fully on any kick.  Always make sure to pivot when needed.

Kickboxing Technique 1: STANCE

From standing, take one step back with one leg and stagger your stance.  Bend your knees slightly with the weight shifted onto your toes.  Hands in front of your face in a pyramid position. Elbows tucked into your rib cage. Shoulders and arms loose and relaxed.

Kickboxing Technique 2: FRONT KICK

Beginner/Intermediate: Front snap kick—With your back leg, bring your knee up into your chest area then extend the leg outward, pointing the toe. Bring the leg back in knee to chest and lower back into stance. Keep the back heel of the standing leg down and balanced.

Advanced: Double front snap kick—same as above except kick once to the knee and once to the face all in one movement.  Work on improving speed and accuracy.

Kickboxing Technique 3: SIDE KICK

Beginner/Intermediate: From stance position, lift the back leg knee up toward your chest.  Pivot the standing foot 180 degrees as you bury your knee into your chest. Extend the entire leg outward so the foot is faced sideways, pushing out with the heel and down with the toe. Bring the knee back into the chest. Pivot standing foot 180 degrees as in stance and lower the leg back into stance.

Advanced: Double Side Kick—Same as above, however do two kicks in one movement. Kick once to the abdomen and once to the head.  Work on speed, form, and accuracy.

Kickboxing Technique 4: ROUNDHOUSE KICK

Beginner/Intermediate: From stance, bring knee into chest. Pivot 180 degrees on standing foot and extend the leg from the knee only.  Bring the knee back into the chest and down to stance position.  Focus on balance and proper technique.

Advanced: Double Roundhouse kick—same as above, however kick once to the knee and once to the head all in one movement.  Work on speed, accuracy, form, and balance.

What’s your favorite workout? Tweet @PageDaily. And read more of Michael George’s great fitness tips.

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One Response to “Kickboxing Your Way to a Buff Body”
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