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What Is Cardio Kickboxing? – Why You Should Try It

what is cardio kickboxing

Cardio Kickboxing is a group fitness class that combines martial arts with high intensity interval training, also known as HIIT.  It is more of a fitness workout and not competition as some would think.

Regardless if you are a beginner or a kickboxer elite, this workout will make sure to get your heart pumping and blood flowing every second of class.

Not only do you get an awesome cardio workout, but you also build lean muscles in the process. With every punch and kick on the bags, you will no doubt enjoy this fun and intense workout.

What To Expect

You should expect to be lead by an experienced instructor who’s job is not only to guide you through the workout, but also get you pumped up as you get ready to work your entire body with this exercise.

The classes are usually an hour long, but I doubt you will even notice since you will be too busy trying to wipe the sweat off your forehead.  Each class usually starts off with a 15 minute warm-up where you will do a series of upper and lower body exercises.

This usually is the toughest part for most members since there are very few moments to rest during each exercise. Keep in mind that you are allowed to rest, but the less rest the better the workout. Although make sure to use caution and go at your own pace.

The warmup is followed by stretching and then 25 minutes of heavy bag work. YES! The fun part. There is usually 6 rounds with 3 minutes for each round. You will go through a different set of combinations as you progress through each round.

Each round the volume of combos will increase testing both coordination and endurance. Some of the combos you will learn during your workout is:

Upper Body combos include:

  • Jabs
  • Cross
  • Uppercut
  • Hooks
  • Spinning Back Fists
  • Superman Punch

Lower Body combos include:

  • Front Kicks
  • Side Kicks
  • Roundhouse Kicks

The Instructor’s job is to make sure to teach you proper technique with each combo learned.  After the heavy bag round, you will then partner up with a friend or any member available and instead of combos on the bag, you will be doing combos on your partner’s glove.

Keep in mind that this is a non-contact workout, so you are not allowed to hit your partner…on purpose that is. So doing partner drills is a great way to have fun and focus on accuracy and coordination.

Partner drills is then followed by cooperative conditioning and then the cool down. This workout is a great way to focus on challenging yourself both mentally and physically.

Who Should Try It

If you are someone looking to burn fat, build muscle and lose weight, then cardio kickboxing is for you. Especially if you are someone that has grown bored with their regular stationary cardio equipment like treadmills, ellipticals and stairmasters.

Regardless of skill level, you can try out cardio kickboxing. What makes taking a cardio kickboxing class so fun is that you don’t have to have any previous martial arts experience. If you are new, make sure you start off slow and that you are patient with yourself as you try learning the movements.

It’s easy to get frustrated as you learn these new techniques, but as long as you don’t give up on yourself. you will develop more confidence as you put in more reps. If you are someone that is experienced and looking for a workout that will keep you from being bored, then cardio kickboxing will make sure to keep you active and engaged.

How Many Calories Can You Burn?

Depending on how much effort you put into each class, you can burn anywhere from 500-900 calories. It is advised that if it is your first class, that you go about 50% and go at your own pace.

Than as you get comfortable and know what to expect, then you can increase the intensity with each class. Also if you are someone that is serious about getting real results, then it is recommended that you go at least 3 times a week. When it comes to getting results, you have to put in the time and effort.

If you want to learn how often you should exercise to lose weight, then I recommend you click here to learn more about losing weight.

How to Start

Look for any martial art studio near you. Gyms also may offer cardio kickboxing classes well, so make sure to check your local gyms.  A couple of things you may want to take note of before you find a studio that offers cardio kickboxing classes are:

  • Be prepared to workout in barefoot or socks as some studios do not allow any shoes on the mats. So Make sure to ask the studio what their policy regarding this matter.
  • Make sure to wear comfortable clothing that you would wear at the gym. You will sweat so I would def leave the sweater at home.
  • Bring a towel and a bottle of water since you will most likely sweat a lot and will find yourself needing to hydrate.
  • If it’s your first class, be prepared to show up about 30 minutes before class starts to go over paperwork.
  • Last but not least, bring your smile and awesome attitude, because the people there are
  • usually there to help you and make you feel apart of the community within their studio.


When it comes to fitness, finding something you will like is very important as motivation is usually a struggle for most people working on taking care of their health.  For some people, the gym can be boring, and cardio kickboxing for some is a great way to relieve some stress and frustration and have fun all at the same time.

So if you can find a studio near you that offers classes, it’s definitely worth it to give it a try and you never know, you may come to really like it.

So please share below your thoughts on cardio kickboxing and let us know if you have ever taken a class.

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How To Burn Fat With Kickboxing

I know how intimidating it can be to hear the word kickboxing.  I’m sure the first thing that enters your mind when you hear it is fighting.  Well I am here to tell you that it is possible to get in shape and burn fat with kickboxing, and not have to worry about taking a beating while doing it.  If anything, you will be doing most of the beating while looking and feeling great! 

Not only is kickboxing a great workout, it can also be fun.  There are so many different types of exercises out there, that it can be quite difficult to find one that works for you.  So imagine  finding something that you can enjoy, but still get all the benefits of an intense workout.  Some people wonder and ask the question, can you lose weight with kickboxing? 

If so, how fast?  I will try and help walk you through some of the ways that kickboxing can be a new and exciting part of your fitness life.


Keep in mind, as I mention kickboxing, I am not talking about Billy Blanks Tae bo air boxing stuff.  I’m talking about actually hitting real bags and getting all the stress and aggression going on in your life out on these workouts.  Plus all that air boxing is a whole bunch of cardio which is breaking down a lot of muscle, but I will get to that later. 

So a good place to start is a private gym.  Although they may be tough to find, many kickboxing gyms are opening up all over the place catered to helping people get in shape.  A couple that come to mind are Ilovekickboxing and title boxing.  I know first hand because I currently am an instructor at a kickboxing studio and trust me, the workout will definitely kick your butt. 

If you just google kickboxing in your area, I’m sure you will find something you could join and be apart of an awesome community of people trying to get in shape just like you.  Most of them allow you trial classes just to see if it is something you will like before choosing to becoming a member.  So it doesn’t hurt to at least try, right?


You can burn anywhere from 500 to 1000 calories in a kickboxing class depending on how much effort you give during the class.  Now with anything in life, it takes hard work and commitment.  So when making fitness a part of you healthy lifestyle, you must make that commitment to yourself to stick with a routine that could potentially help you get great results. 

So once you have found a studio, if you could commit yourself to kickboxing at least 3 days a week along with eating healthy, you will be amazed at how quickly the results will start to show not just on the scale, but in photos.  Most kickboxing classes are usually 60 minutes long, but trust it will be the quickest 60 minutes of your life. 

Now if you’re thinking that you will only be doing kickboxing for the whole 60 minutes, well guess again.  The great thing about these kickboxing classes is that it is very structured so you know exactly what to do and when to do it.  The general breakdown of any kickboxing class goes as follows:

  1. Conditioning
  2. Stretching
  3. Heavy Bag Rounds
  4. Partner Drills
  5. Partner Condition
  6. Cool Down & Stretch

Conditioning 15 min – this is considered the warmup part of the workout, but most definitely the most intense part.  So if you can get through this part, which I’m sure you can, then you can get through the class no doubt. 

So basically you go through a series of body weight exercises where the instructor makes you do a bunch of pushups, squats and everyone’s favorite, BURPEES.  Now I know it may seem like a lot of hard work, but the best thing about this part is that you can go at your own pace and not feel like a total failure.  If you need to step back and catch your breath, you can do that without feeling bad about it.  Regardless if you are a beginner or experienced, you can challenge yourself at a pace you are comfortable with.


Stretching 6 min – I’m sure we all know how important it is to stretch and make sure the muscles are loose and prepared to get into the workout.  So this is the time for you to gather yourself after an intense “warmup.”

Heavy Bag Rounds 25 min – Now on to the fun part where you get to be in your own zone and release a lot of tension on the bags. 

There are usually six 3 min rounds where you go through a serious of different combos for each round.  Now if you’re thinking to yourself, oh man, I have no idea what I’m doing.  Don’t worry, you should be given a personal instructor for your first day to go through the basics of the combos while the main instructor will teach more advanced combos to members who have been there longer. 

One of the best parts about this part of the class is the fact that you don’t have to worry about people judging you on the bags as everyone is so focused on doing their own thing.

Partner Drills 5 min –  This part of the workout is where you get to partner up with someone and get focus on accuracy and coordination.  Instead of doing combos on the heavy bag, your target will be the gloves of your partner.  This will allow you to really focus on your accuracy and also have fun with you partner a bit.

Partner Conditioning 5 min – In this drill, you will still be partnered up where one partner may do wall sits while the other partner is doing combos on the heavy bag.  Then you will be asked to switch and do the other respective exercise.  With this part of the workout, there are various routines of different exercises you may be asked to do, so definitely be ready.

Cool Down & Stretch – This is where you get to cool down and relax your muscles for all the hard work you put into class.


For most people, losing weight is the main goal for wanting to join a kickboxing studio since you can burn so many calories during the workout.  But what some may not know is that kickboxing is a great way to also Burn Fat! 

What separates kickboxing from your normal routine at the gym, which may include a lot of cardio on the treadmill, is that you get the cardio and the resistance training all in one workout.  You see, too much cardio can break down muscle, so if one of your goals is to get that nice toned defined look, then you are defeating the purpose by doing so much cardio. 

With kickboxing, you get both the cardio and resistance training with all the body movements.  From the warmup where you are doing all body weight exercises to the heavy bag rounds where resistance is given with every punch and kick, you are burn a bunch of calories throughout the body. 

At the same time, you are getting that heart rate up which helps with the fat burning process.  So with all this, you are getting a more efficient workout when it comes to burning fat and building muscle.


Most places will provide you everything you need to participate in the workout, but make sure to ask just in case.  You should be given gloves to protect your knuckles when punching the bag.  Hand wraps may also be used to to help support the wrist and knuckles, but usually these are worn by more experienced kickboxers. 

Be prepared to workout in either barefoot or socks as some studios do not allow sneakers or shoes on the mats.  Make sure to wear comfortable clothing as you will sweat a lot during your workout.  Other than that, make sure to bring your effort and a great attitude and I’m sure you will get the workout of your life!