Do you ever wonder how celebrity moms stay in shape (seemingly) so easily, while we mommas sweat and stress to fit in workouts? Part of the reason might be because of their favorite exercise: kickboxing. Â (Don’t worry, this activity does not involve physical contact- so you only have to worry about the workout kicking your butt). Aerobic kickboxing is a vigorous workout that combines elements of boxing, martial arts, and aerobics. An instructor typically leads the class through a variety of kicks and punches that merge to form fluid movements (and can even be done to music!).
So what are the benefits of kicking boxing? The American Council on Exercise says that you can burn between 350 and 450 calories per hour and tone both your upper and lower body..all at the same time. It improves your flexibility, endurance, coordination and balance (it’s as close to a total body workout as you can get!) Kickboxing is also a great way to release tension, aggression or stress (after a long and frustrating day, who hasnâ€™t had the urge to hit something?) You can also learn some basic self-defense moves and boost your self-confidence along the way.
What To Expect When You’re Kickboxing:
* 10 to 15 minutes of warm-up (include stretching, jumping jacks, push-ups and body weight movements)
* 30 minutes of kickboxing
– You will often begin in a Basic Stance, with both feet on the floor and your guard up (hands in fists, protecting your body)
– Some instructors may use equipment, such as punching bags or jump ropes
– For an explanation of some basic moves, including forward jab, hook punch, and power punch, please visit the International Fitness Associationâ€™sÂ â€œKickboxing Aerobics Basics.â€
* At least 5 minutes of cool down (10 minutes of stretching and muscle conditioning)
Donâ€™t have a gym membership? There are many great kickboxing videos that let you exercise from the comfort (and convenience) of your own living room. Here are two great videos:
– Wear loose, comfortable clothing because you will be moving your arms and legs in various directions.
– Be prepared for an intensive and high impact activity.
– Find a class that suits your skill and physical fitness level.
– Start with low kicks and slow movements (injury can occur if you attempt a quick, complicated kickboxing move without proper instruction).
– Drink lots of fluids to stay hydrated!
– Keep your body in a neutral position and void rounding or arching your back.
Caraâ€™s Craving of the Week: Kickboxing Gloves
Kickboxing is a high impact exercise that requires the proper equipment in order to prevent injury. Gloves help to protect your hands, especially if your class or video uses a punching bag.
Step out of your comfort zone and start jabbing your way to being trimmed and toned!
* Speak Up: What do you really think of kickboxing?
Want to get outside, feel fit or find new ways to tone your body? Cara Murphy will help you tap into your inner athlete, no matter where you are at in your life. To submit your own questions, comments and suggestions, please contact Cara at firstname.lastname@example.org.