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May 28, 2013 at 8:00 AMComments: 1 Faves: 0

Combat Fat With Kickboxing

By Kim Straub More Blogs by This Author

Ever since I was young, I wanted to be a superhero. I remember running around the yard, punching the air while yelling the occasional “POW” and “BAAM.” I remember tying a sheet around my neck and contemplating jumping out of my second story bedroom window, convinced that I could fly (After all, I had the cape). And I will never forget sitting at the dinner table intensely staring at the bowl of mashed potatoes, convinced that I could make it move with my mind.

As I grew, my fascination with superheros remained but took a more realistic approach. I no longer believed that I could fly or had telepathic powers. Instead, I focused more on attaining a body that made it look like I spent my life fighting crime. I aimed to find a workout that would help me develop long lean muscle, a toned core, and increased cardiovascular endurance. It wasn't long before I discovered my super self through kickboxing.

Types of Kickboxing 

The amazing thing about kickboxing is that you can tackle both cardio and weight training in every class. Each hour long session will burn around 750 calories, increase your heart rate, and tone muscles by using your own body weight. Punches, jabs, hooks, and kicks are basic moves that all kickboxing classes include, but there are different styles of kickboxing that help cater to individuals of all ages and fitness levels.

Cardio Kickboxing

Cardio kickboxing is the most popular. It involves little to no contact with others and is choreographed to fast-beat music. The more recognized forms of cardio kickboxing, such as Turbokick and Les Mills Bodycombat, include new choreography and music that is produced every few months by certified trainers and mixed martial arts experts. With every sweaty punch and jab performed in class a mental battlefield will be created, with you in the front line.

Most cardio kickboxing classes can be found at gyms or other fitness studios. If studios in your area are slim, there are many cardio kickboxing DVDS, such as Insanity and Tae Bo, available for purchase that can be performed in the comfort of your own home.

All students can alter the choreography on their quest to a super-body, and instructors can provide modifications for students with joint issues. Participants may also work at a slower pace than the rest of the class to help build endurance.

Traditional Kickboxing

Traditional kickboxing involves contact with punching bags or other individuals in some way. Boxing gloves, jump ropes, and weighted ankle wraps are typically found in the studio and used throughout the class. Students can opt to take group classes or have private sessions with trainers. Group sessions allow students to experience a more realistic approach to boxing in which other individuals are targets. However, every student is protected by a padded shield allowing you to release every ounce of your super strength. Along with the health benefits of cardio and strength training, traditional kickboxing sessions also offer instruction on important self-defense methods.

The Benefits

Kickboxing targets many muscles you don't normally work, primarily your core. Increased core strength will benefit other areas, including your posture. Along with having a more trimmed body, the muscle definition you will build from kickboxing will burn calories long after your workout is done. Building muscle will also increase bone density which helps prevent future injury. Punching and jabbing the air will increase cardiovascular endurance while relieving stress and tension. Kicking a sand bag will tone muscle and help you discover your inner strength. Learning self-defense techniques will give you confidence and empowerment.

Feeling like a crime-fighting superhero doesn't hurt either.

Sources:

http://www.besthealthmag.ca/get-healthy/fitness/5-amazing-benefits-of-kickboxing-for-women

http://www.livestrong.com/article/120353-benefits-kickboxing-women/

http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/the-basics-build-muscle-for-better-health

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1 Comment

  • I took a kickboxing class through the local community center and it was fantastic! It was definitely a challenging and fun way to burn some extra calories. It was also a great stress reliever and helped release any pent-up emotion! If you're looking for a form of exercise that keeps you sweating and engaged, definitely give kickboxing a try.

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