Kickboxing for Kids The Ultimate Guide That You may Know!

Kickboxing is a popular combat sport and also comes under the category of mixed martial arts, abbreviated as MMA. In simple terms, I would say it is a combined version of boxing πŸ₯Š and karate πŸ₯‹ that involves punching, kicking, and striking movements between opponents. 

I would recommend you introduce your kids to kickboxing as a hobby to improve their general level of fitness and as a form of self-defense for them. 

There is a scope for kids to practice the sport at a more dedicated level to participate in competitions and interact with a community of people interested in the sport.

In this blog post, I have included an A to Z guide πŸ“‘ on kickboxing for kids to help you understand the sport better.

Ideal Age for Kickboxing:

If you are wondering what would be the ideal age to get your kids started with their kickboxing πŸ‘ŠπŸΌ lessons, professional coaches say your kids can practice from when they are young, as five to six years or above.

When it came to my son, I tried to give him a basic idea of the sport and its aspects to see whether he was interested in giving it a try or not. You could try the same with your kids after they turn five to six years or above and encourage them to try the sport.

Initially, from the ages of 5 to 12, kickboxing training aims to work on the fundamental motor skills of your kids, work on their balance, build their coordination and strength πŸ’ͺ🏼, and instill a sense of discipline and confidence in themselves. 

During this, they also learn the basics of this combat sport, like punching, striking, sweeping, footwork, and other techniques.

Belt System of Kickboxing:

There are six levels in the belts πŸ₯‹ given in the kickboxing journey, and I have listed them in the order of ranking –

  1. Kyu Brown Belt (perfect techniques)
  2. Kyu Blue Belt
  3. Kyu Green Belt
  4. Kyu Orange Belt
  5. Kyu Yellow Belt
  6. Kyu White Belt (beginners)

The History Behind Kickboxing: 

The origin of the term kickboxing can be traced back to Japan πŸ‡―πŸ‡΅ in the 1960s. Kickboxing was developed as a sport in the later years of the 1950s as karate mixed with boxing. 

Only in the 1970s did American πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ kickboxing come into existence as a sport. It became popular due to the first World Championships held in September 1974.

Benefits of Kickboxing:

I understand the benefits of kickboxing and how it contributed to my son’s personal growth and dedication, and thus, I felt this was a good sport for him to try.

Promotes Fitness 

Promotes Fitness

As is the case with most sports, kickboxing can help your kids become fit individuals and improve their overall physical health.

Due to the nature of the sport, your kids go through a high-intensity exercise that encourages them to push their limits and do better each day.

My son became physically more active and healthier as he began his kickboxing journey. 

Develops Flexibility

Kickboxing promotes flexibility πŸ€ΈπŸ½β€β™€οΈ in your kids as they kick and strike with their hands and legs. 

Through constant training and practice, your kids can become more flexible as they use their arms and legs to punch, throw, kick, sweep, and use their bodies to avoid the opponent.

Boosts Self-Confidence and Self-Esteem

Boosts Self-Confidence And Self-Esteem

Your kids will learn to be confident πŸ‘πŸΌ in themselves while practicing kickboxing. When they face challenges, setbacks, obstacles, and hurdles through the training, your kids are given an opportunity to grow, become self-confident, and develop a sense of self-esteem over time.

I would say that kids learn a lot of valuable lessons through success and failure, which can help them have a better outlook on life. 

Encourages Socializing 

When your kids practice kickboxing with other people, they can socialize – form bonds, and feel a sense of community. ❀️ 

I believe that sports have the power to bring people together and help them find and nurture new friendships.

My son made a lot of friendships because of his kickboxing classes, much to my happiness.

Helps Weight Loss

I would say that kickboxing is an effective way for kids to lose weight and burn calories, as it is almost an aerobic-style workout. 

Staying fit and healthy through kickboxing training can help kids improve their endurance levels and develop their upper arm strength. You could say that kickboxing is like a workout for the entire body.

Aids Self Defense

Aids Self Defense

When you introduce your kids to kickboxing, they eventually develop their 

combat skills, which aid self-defense πŸ‘ŠπŸΌ skills.

I believe kickboxing is an effective form of self-defense for your kids as it combines the techniques of karate and boxing, thereby teaching kids offensive and defensive moves to save themselves from difficult situations. 

Improves Mental Health

Apart from helping your kids work on and develop their physical health, kickboxing can also be a great way to improve their mental 🧠 health, as it contributes to increased levels of endorphins. 

I believe mental well-being is as essential as physical health, and exercise and sports can help your kids with this. Kickboxing is a great energy and mood booster that can transform your kids’ moods and make them feel better mentally.

If your kids are stressed or struggling with their mental health, regularly practicing kickboxing can help reduce stress and negative feelings.

Drawbacks of Kickboxing:

As much as there are benefits to kickboxing, there are also a few drawbacks to the combat sport that I believe you need to be aware of before getting your kids interested.

Loss of Motivation

Loss Of Motivation

Kickboxing involves a lengthy training process, which might lead to your kids losing motivation πŸ˜” and sometimes finding it difficult to regain their spirit due to the period of training. 

Leads to Injuries 

There are more chances of your kids getting injuries πŸ€•πŸ©Ή due to the nature of this combat sport than other sports, as kickboxing includes hand and leg movements that are done with force.

This also leads to the possibility of muscle strains, cuts, and fractures due to the quick and fast-paced techniques. 

It is advised that kickboxing should be practiced under the supervision of trained professionals who can help minimize any unwanted injuries that can happen due to a lack of guidance.

Requires Professional Practice 

Requires Professional Practice

As I mentioned earlier, your kids cannot learn kickboxing at home and would require the help of a professional to practice the sport. 

Your kids can try the fundamental strikes, punches, and kicks at home for a fun session, but they require professional levels of guidance and supervision if they want to learn proper techniques to compete with others and take the sport seriously. 

Rule Sets of Kickboxing:

Like any other sport, there is a certain set of rules involved in kickboxing that players need to follow depending on the type of kickboxing.

Full Contact Kickboxing

Full Contact Kickboxing

Full-contact kickboxing is also commonly referred to as American πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ Kickboxing. 

This variation originated in the 1970s. It combined the Western boxing style and traditional karate – the two popular combat sports in the country at that point.

In this form, opponents can only use punches and kicks to strike each other above the waist level and cannot touch the elbows and knees.

Semi Contact Kickboxing

Semi-contact kickboxing is also commonly referred to as Points Fights. 

I would say that this version of American kickboxing is very similar to a karate competition, as the objective is to score points. Delivery, speed, and technique are crucial in scoring points. πŸ’―

According to this rule, opponents can score points by striking punches and kicks above the waist and doing foot sweeps below the ankle. 

The points are awarded as follows:

  • 1 point for punches, kicks, and foot sweeps,
  • 2 points for jumping kicks to the body or kicks aimed at the head and 
  • 3 points for jumping kicks to the head.

The rounds take place on tatami mats, commonly used in Japan, and the fighters wear belts according to their level of experience. 

Freestyle Kickboxing

Freestyle Kickboxing

Freestyle kickboxing is also commonly known as International Rules or Low Kick in the United States. 

In this variation, the rules are similar to full-contact kickboxing but with the addition of low kicks, which are allowed here.

The opponents can use punches and kicks to strike each other below the waist level and at the knees while they cannot touch the elbows. Sweeps and throws are not allowed.

Japanese Kickboxing 

Japanese πŸ‡―πŸ‡΅ kickboxing is also commonly referred to as Asian rules, oriental rules, unified rules, or K-1 and is a popular variation.

In this form, opponents can use kicks, punches, and sweeps to strike each other below the waist.

Dutch Kickboxing

Dutch Kickboxing

Dutch kickboxing is commonly referred to as Dutch style rules.

This form became popular when kickboxing was introduced to the Netherlands πŸ‡³πŸ‡± from Japan. It is a style that is a mix of Muay Thai, Kyokushin karate, and Western boxing techniques. 

The rules are similar to K-1 and Muay Thai. Opponents can use kicks and punches below the waist. Elbows can be considered if both parties agree.

Styles of Kickboxing:

These are the different styles of kickboxing from around the world –

Muay Thai

Muay Thai

Muay Thai is also commonly referred to as Thai πŸ‡ΉπŸ‡­ Boxing, as it originated in Thailand sometime in the 16th century.

In this style, opponents can use eight contact points – both the hands, feet, elbows, and knees, to strike each other. Thus, it is also known as β€œThe Art of Eight Limbs.” 

Savate

Savate is also commonly referred to as French πŸ‡«πŸ‡· kickboxing. This style combines English boxing techniques with foot kicks. 

Sanda 

Sanda, or Sanzhou, is also commonly referred to as Chinese πŸ‡¨πŸ‡³ kickboxing.

This style combines the traditional techniques of Kung Fu with modern techniques of combat. It allows punches, kicks, throws, and sweeps with takedowns and wrestling. 

Lethwei

Lethwei is a form of kickboxing that originated in Myanmar πŸ‡²πŸ‡². 

In this style, opponents can punch, kick, and strike each other below the waist, including the knees and elbows. Additionally, headbutts are also allowed in this form.

Equipment for Kickboxing:

I recommend you invest in a few pieces of equipment before your kids begin their kickboxing practice to look out for their safety.

Boxing Gloves

Boxing Gloves

In my opinion – you will need to first buy a pair of good quality regulation boxing gloves πŸ₯Š for your kids to practice kickboxing and ensure their hands are safe while serving punches and defending hits. 

Below the boxing gloves, make your kids use hand wraps to cover their hands and prevent damage to the knuckles and the wrist parts.

The best part is that these gloves can be used for other sports, like boxing and Muay Thai.

Shin Guards

Next, you can invest in shin guards to provide a guard to the shin area and lower part of the leg area of your kids. These shin guards can save them from painful strikes to that area and make the practice smoother.

Footpads 

Footpads are another essential piece of equipment for kickboxing that your kids need to wear to protect the foot area from possible injuries and tears.

The foot is also used as a striking weapon in this combat sport, and these footpads can provide an added layer of protection while fighting. 

Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed reading this A to Z guide I compiled about kickboxing and getting to know the sport a little better to get your kids interested. 

Please comment below if you have anything more to share or any questions for me to answer! 😁

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