Kickboxing is a sport that uses kicks, punches and throws in dual combat. Traditionally practised as a full-contact, martial art sport, it is becoming the “yoga” of cardiovascular fitness.
In this form of standing combat, the strong emphasis on knee and elbow strikes makes it very effective, targeting the abdominal, chest, leg and arm muscle groups.
“It’s a great anaerobic workout. It’s not so much self defence-focused as it is a bag-focused class, but it still gives you the ability to throw a mean punch,” Penny Gulliver, head instructor of a kickboxing course in Erskineville, said.
Kickboxing has a great appeal within the gay community. The classes make you feel healthy and you leave feeling empowered.
The Erskineville-based course, although being directed at those in the gay community, has members of all ages, background and sexualities enrolled.
The sport, by nature of its popularity, is highly addictive and is increasingly being taken up competitively.
“After the first course, people make it a health hobby coming three times a week,” Gulliver said.
“Once adequate technique levels are achieved, sparring and full contact competition is the next step. It can never be safe at this level, but careful supervision and the rules of the sport make it as safe as possible.”
Kickboxing kills two birds with one stone, Gulliver said. It teaches self defence and respect for your opponent – and in terms of fitness, 40 minutes on the treadmill just can’t compare.
Classes are held at 104 Erskineville Rd, Erskineville, on Thursdays from 6pm. Cost is $60 for six weeks. A beginners class starts on 17 January next year. Details: 0411 808 451 or email [email protected]

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