Kickboxing. For some, when they hear that word they are excited by the idea of getting in shape learning to punch and kick. For others, the idea of someone being able to punch and kick at them is a scary thought…or one they want to try out. The kickboxing program at Elite MMA is designed in a way that gives access for everyone to get the benefits of kickboxing up to the level of contact they are comfortable with.
To start, the kardio kickboxing classes are a great way to learn the basic strikes and stance while getting your body in shape to do kickboxing. That class is focused on hitting the heavy bag so nobody is swinging at you. You learn how to stand, punch, elbow, knee, and kick the right way. The heavy bag helps to condition your heart, lungs, muscles, and joints in a way that many other workouts don’t. We build in bodyweight exercises such as pushups, squats, lunges, burpees, etc. to increase your conditioning. We also have abdominal work to prepare you for the twisting of hitting as well as the impact if you choose to move to the more advanced classes. Many kardio kickboxing classes end with stretching to ensure you are flexible for training. Many of these benefits improve your everyday life and for some, the KKB classes are the perfect solution to their kickboxing desire.
Others want to take their muay thai up a notch. Whether they have trained before or have already gone thru our KKB classes, there are many who want to know how to use and apply muay thai in a live setting. Generally you won’t go from the heavy bag to someone swinging full speed at your head, there are steps to get you ready for hard sparring. In our Muay Thai/Kickboxing Fundamentals classes you can satisfy this itch. Learning how to hold and hit mitts or thai pads is typically the next step. By learning to use mitts you improve your accuracy and combinations while also learning to support your teammates in their development. Many don’t realize this, but holding mitts is amazing development as your mind gets to go thru a high number of reps as to what moves look like coming at you. When your partner throws a jab to your mitt, your mind is registering what that looks like for future use in sparring or real life self-defense. That way you build reactions to common strikes and can respond easier.
Light, controlled, or “play” sparring is the next in the ordinary progression of training. Here you are working to use offense and defense but with sub-optimal contact. Here you can learn to work out the kinks in your training such as flinching or being nervous to hurt your partner. By working for technique and smoothness, you progress with low injury risk as you build your control levels. Play sparring is one of my favorite ways to train, especially when you limit the number or type of strikes each person can utilize. For example, you can do “2 and 2” sparring meaning each person can throw 2 strikes at a time back and forth so as to learn to be on both offense and defense. You can also do “jab vs. cross” sparring meaning one person can only use their jab (front hand straight punch) while the other can only use their cross (rear hand straight punch). This forces you to work certain aspects of your game while building your partner’s as well.
Hard sparring above 75% intensity level is typically there for those who want to compete, fight, or they want to train like they are going to compete or fight. I think it is very beneficial for many to experience this, especially to be ready for something similar in a self defense situation. Granted, this level of training is not going to be for everyone and that is totally okay. Some want to get to this level as fast as possible, others take a while to build to it, and still others decide this is not a level they want to take their training to.
Elite MMA Muay Thai kickboxing also has a belt system that goes from white belt to black belt. This ranking system allows the students to set goals for new belts and for the instructors to give regular feedback in the form of rankings and belt tests.
The key is that Elite MMA’s Muay Thai kickboxing program is for everyone: the fitness enthusiast, the self defense advocate, the competitive hobbyist, and the competitor/fighter. We love seeing all of you achieve your goals on the mats and look forward to many more of you joining us soon!