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Beginner’s Guide To Cardio Kickboxing

If you want to get stronger, feel empowered, or burn a whole bunch of calories, cardio kickboxing is the workout for you! Though you use powerful, strong moves, don’t let kickboxing intimidate you. It’s an extremely empowering workout that can actually help you build confidence while having fun.

Cardio kickboxing is an effective cardiovascular workout that blends martial arts techniques with dance elements and basic calisthenics to leave you sweating and feeling like you could take on the world all at once.

Let’s learn how to start jabbing, punching, and kicking your way to a fun new workout.

Equipment Used For Cardio Kickboxing

Weighted Gloves

Some people use weighted gloves to enhance their workout, but this isn’t recommended for a beginner.

If you do choose to use weighted gloves (I really like them), they weigh between half a pound and a pound each.


You will also see some people hold dumbbells instead; however, if your class is moving at a fast pace, I don’t recommend holding three or five-pound weights. You don’t want to throw out your shoulder or cause too much stress on your joints.


You will also want to choose the right shoes. While you can probably show up in any sneakers and do fine, it is recommended to wear cross-training or studio shoes.

Expert Tip: Don’t use running shoes. They will prevent you from proper lateral movement (side shuffles, etc).

What To Expect During Cardio Kickboxing

The Warm Up

At the beginning of class, the instructor will take you through a warm-up that mimics some of what you will do in class. Think of it as a rehearsal not only for your memory but for your muscles.

Slower squats and kicks will be introduced, as will the various punch motions that you will use: jab, cross, hook, and uppercut each have a unique motion.

This is an important time during class. You’ll want to listen and watch how these warm-ups look and execute with good form. Once the class is going at full speed you’ll want this good form to carry over.


After you are warmed up, you begin a series of movements that are drill-oriented.

Typically the instructor will lead the class through these drills involving the entire body. As with any new form of exercise, listen to your body, pay attention to your heart rate (because it will get up there as you punch and kick), and consult your doctor if you have any physical concerns or limitations.

Most kickboxing workouts are about repetition instead of complicated choreography, so you don’t have to feel intimidated that, as a beginner, it will take you forever to catch on.

Benefits of Cardio Kickboxing

There are so many benefits to finding a cardio workout that you actually enjoy. Kickboxing is a great way to mix up your normal workout routine and have a little fun while burning calories and fat.

It can also improve your cardiovascular fitness, give you a confidence boost, and build lean muscle.

Improves cardiovascular fitness

Improves endurance

High caloric burn

Builds confidence

Builds lean muscle

Increases fat burn

Who Is Cardio Kickboxing Right For?

Low-impact lovers, rejoice! Most things done in cardio kickboxing are low-impact in nature or easily modified.

Beginners might need a few classes to catch on to everything, but it won’t take long. In the meantime, you’ll be moving and burning calories while you learn. Most people new to this kind of workout feel that natural “high” that comes from an intense workout, combined with the added feeling of strength and confidence only found in cardio kickboxing.

Athletes love the cardio intensity this workout provides. Plus, you can always enhance your workout by squatting deeper or punching with more power or adding weighted gloves.

So, cardio kickboxing is for everyone. Yes, everyone!

Proper Cardio Kickboxing Techniques

Cardio kickboxing moves need to be properly executed to get the most out of your workout and prevent injury. Keep the following in mind:

Upper Body

When performing jabs, uppercuts, hooks and other upper body moves make sure the punch comes from your body not your arm. In other words, every upper body move starts from the ground up.

Put your body weight into it and throw the jab using your core, shoulder, and back muscles, not just from the elbow to the wrist. If your wrists and forearms hurt after your workout, you need to work on your form. If your upper back is sore, congratulations!

Lower Body

First and foremost, stay light on your feet. You’ll be moving forward, back, side to side, and up and down. You need to be in a “ready position” at all times. So stay on the balls of your feet with your heels available to pivot and turn.

When it comes to kicks, think about power, not height. These kicks are not for dancing, they are for striking. It’s not about how high, it’s about how intense and with the correct muscles.

It helps to always imagine an opponent. Visualize something or someone that you are kicking against. This will help you kick as you should.


Both upper and lower-body kickboxing moves will require you to contact your core muscles. When done properly, cardio kickboxing can be a great core body strength, so keep those abs engaged at all times to reap the most core benefits.

Pull your belly button in toward your spine and lock that muscle in deep. It should feel tight, like you are always prepared for someone to kick or punch you in the gut.

Not only will you strengthen your core with this isometric work, but you’ll have better form overall.

7-Minute Cardio Kickboxing Workout Video

Want more? Check out our Get Healthy U TV Cardio Kickboxing Gold Workout!

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The post Beginner’s Guide To Cardio Kickboxing appeared first on Get Healthy U | Chris Freytag.

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