Kickboxing is an intense mixed martial art that is used by competitive fighters, as well as those simply interested in general fitness. Kickboxing features continuous punching and kicking moves that effectively develop your heart and lungs, burns calories and increases muscular strength, power and flexibility. Competitive fighters usually incorporate conditioning drills into their personal training regimens, while those who participate in cardio kickboxing typically do so via classes led by an instructor.
The floating bag drills develop explosive punching power and endurance. Stand in front of a hanging heavy bag. Either punch or kick the bag continuously so that it’s raised up to 45 degrees from its hanging position. Continue to punch or kick the bag for one to two minutes to build up endurance.
Medicine Ball Toss
The medicine ball toss requires a medicine ball and a partner. Stand facing your partner while holding a medicine ball at your chest. Grip the ball with both hands and step toward your partner. Explosively throw the ball at your partner’s stomach. Your partner contracts her abdominals and allows the ball to hit her in the torso. She will then pick up the medicine ball and explosively throw the ball at your stomach. This drill develops upper body power from the medicine ball toss element, and improves core strength from contracting and taking the blow from the medicine ball at the abdominals. Complete five to 10 repetitions.
Squat and Kick
The squat and kick develops strength and power in your lower body. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart or slightly wider, with your hands raised up into fighting position. Bend your knees about 90 degrees to drop into a squat. As you come up out of the squat, lift one knee toward your chest and then extend your leg to kick forward. Return your foot to the floor and immediately drop into a squat to perform your next repetition. Switch legs after every repetition. Perform the exercise for one to two minutes.
Jab, Cross, Squat Combo
The jab, cross and squat combo will challenge your cardiovascular system while developing strength in your legs and power behind your punch. Begin in a fighting stance with your knees slightly bent. Throw a jab with your lead arm and immediately follow that with a cross punch with your trailing arm. Immediately drop into a full squat and then explode up out of the squat into a jump, twisting your body 180 degrees in the air so that your shoulders are facing the opposite direction. Perform the same combo while facing that direction, which will involve throwing a jab and cross with the opposite arms.
Kim Nunley has been screenwriting and working as an online health and fitness writer since 2005. She’s had multiple short screenplays produced and her feature scripts have placed at the Austin Film Festival. Prior to writing full-time, she worked as a strength coach, athletic coach and college instructor. She holds a master's degree in kinesiology from California State University, Fullerton.