Learning Objectives

  • To understand the physiologic demands of competitive kickboxing

  • To outline a training regimen that will improve a kickboxer's anaerobic and aerobic capacities

  • To identify the most common injuries sustained in kickboxing and suggest preventive measures

  • To outline the provision of medical coverage for kickboxing matches

19.1 History

Although the genesis of modern kickboxing remains elusive and debatable, several sources have traced its origin to the sixteenth century.1–3 During this time, soldiers in Indochina trained to use each segment of each limb for offensive and defensive purposes. Such training prompted military members to test their skills against each other in competitive kickboxing matches. In Thailand especially, these matches were embraced by royalty and the general populace alike.1–3

The matches involved two competitors directing full-force strikes with the hands, elbows, knees, shins, and feet at each other. Matches were stopped after expiration of a...


Strength Training Endurance Training Aerobic Capacity Interval Training Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. 1.
    Anderson WW. 1989, Sport in Thailand. In: Wagner EA (ed) Sport in Asia and Africa: A Comparative Handbook. Greenwood Press; New York: 121–46.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Harris R. 2001, Muay Thai. In: Green TA (ed) Martial Arts of the World. ABC-Clio; Santa Barbara, CA: 350–4.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Prayukvong K, Junlakan LD. 2005.Muay Thai: A Living Legacy, 2nd ed, Vol 1. Spry Publishing; Bangkok:Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Henning SE. 1981; The Chinese martial arts in historical perspective. Military Affairs. 45: 173–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Delahaye M. 1991.Savate and Chausson: French Boxing of Yesterday and Today. Editions François Reder; Paris:Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Sports Authority of India. Indigenous Games and Martial Arts of India. New Delhi: Sports Authority of India; 1987. Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Svinth JR. 2001, Chronological history of the martial arts. In: Green TA (ed) Martial Arts of the World. ABC-Clio; Santa Barbara, CA: 787–829.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Buse GJ, Wood RM. 2006; Safety profile of amateur kickboxing among military and civilian competitors. Mil Med. 171: 443–7.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Powers SK, Howley ET. 2004.Exercise Physiology: Theory and Application to Fitness and Performance, 5th ed. McGraw-Hill; New York:Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Francescato MP, Talon T, di Prampero PE. 1995; Energy cost and energy sources in karate. Eur J Appl Physiol Occup Physiol. 71: 355–61.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Kraemer WJ. 2000, Physiological adaptations to anaerobic and aerobic endurance training programs. In: Baechle TR, Earle RW (eds) Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning, 2nd ed. Human Kinetics; Champaign, IL: 137–168.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Birrer RB. 1996; Trauma epidemiology in the martial arts: the results of an eighteen-year international survey. Am J Sports Med. 24: S72–9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Sanders MS, Antonio J. 1999; Strength and conditioning for submission fighting. Strength Cond J. 21: 42–5.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Zabukovec R, Tiidus PM. 1995; Physiological and anthropometric profile of elite kickboxers. J Strength Cond Res. 9: 240–2.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    MacDougall JD, Hicks AL, MacDonald JR, et al. 1998; Muscle performance and enzymatic adaptations to sprint interval training. J Appl Physiol. 84: 2138–42.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Chu DA. 1998.Jumping into Plyometrics, 2nd ed. Human Kinetics; Champaign, IL:Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Plisk SS. 2000, Speed, agility, and speed-endurance development. In: Baechle TR, Earle RW (eds) Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning, 2nd ed. Human Kinetics; Champaign, IL: 471–92.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Fleck SJ, Kraemer WJ. 2004.Designing Resistance Training Programs, 3rd ed. Human Kinetics; Champaign, IL:Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Frontera WR, Micheli LJ, Herring SA, et al. 2006.Clinical Sports Medicine: Medical Management and Rehabilitation. W.B. Saunders; Philadelphia, PA:Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Karvonen J, Vuorimaa T. 1988; Heart rate and exercise intensity during sports activities. Practical application. Sports Med. 5: 303–11.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Nader GA. 2006; Concurrent strength and endurance training: from molecules to man. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 38: 1965–70.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Potteiger JA. 2000, Aerobic endurance exercise training. In: Baechle TR, Earle RW (eds) Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning, 2nd ed. Human Kinetics; Champaign, IL: 495–510.Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Sharman MJ, Cresswell AG, Riek S. 2006; Proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation stretching: mechanisms and clinical implications. Sports Med. 36: 929–39.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Holcomb WR. 2000, Stretching and warm-up. In: Baechle TR, Earle RW (eds) Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning, 2nd ed. Human Kinetics; Champaign, IL: 321–42.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Zazryn TR, Finch CF, McCrory P. 2003; A 16 year study of injuries to professional kickboxers in the state of Victoria, Aus Br J Sports Med. 37: 448–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Gartland S, Malik MH, Lovell M. 2005; A prospective study of injuries sustained during competitive muay Thai kickboxing. Clin J Sport Med. 15: 34–6.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Gartland S, Malik MHA, Lovell ME. 2001; Injury and injury rates in muay Thai kickboxing. Br J Sports Med. 35: 308–13.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Finch CF. 2002; The risk of abdominal injury to women during sport. J Sci Med Sport. 5: 46–54.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Saengsirisuwan V, Phadungkij S, Pholpramool C. 1998; Renal and liver functions and muscle injuries during training and after competition in Thai boxers. Br J Sports Med. 32: 304–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Machold M, Muellner T, Kwasny O. 2000; Is the return to high-level athletics possible after fasciotomy for a compartment syndrome of the thigh? Am J Sports Med. 28: 407–10.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Malek AM, Halbach VV, Phatouros CC, et al. 2000; Endovascular treatment of a ruptured intracranial dissecting vertebral aneurysm in a kickboxer. J Trauma. 48: 143–5.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Echaniz-Laguna A, Fleury MC, Petrow P, et al. 2001; Internal carotid artery dissection caused by a kick during French boxing. Presse Med. 30: 683.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Sakellaridis T, Stamatelopoulos A, Andrianopoulos E, et al. 2004; Isolated first rib fracture in athletes. Br J Sports Med. 38: e5.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Lloyd TW, Tyler MPH, Roberts AHN. 1998; Spontaneous rupture of extensor pollicis longus tendon in a kick boxer. Br J Sports Med. 32: 178–9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Davis SE, Romaine LJ, Casebolt K, et al. 2002; Incidence of injury in kickboxing. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 34: S257.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    McHugh T, Laforce R Jr, Gallagher P, et al. 2006; Natural history of the long-term cognitive, affective, and physical sequelae of mild traumatic brain injury. Brain Cogn. 60: 209–11.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Miele VJ, Bailes JE, Cantu RC, et al. 2006; Subdural hematomas in boxing: the spectrum of consequences. Neurosurg Focus. 21: E10.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Jordan BD. 1994; Dementia pugilistica. J Neurol Sci. 127: 6.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Schwartz ML, Hudson AR, Fernie GR, et al. 1986; Biomechanical study of full-contact karate contrasted with boxing. J Neurosurg. 64: 248–52.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Buckwalter JA, Martin JA, Brown TD. 2006; Perspectives on chondrocyte mechanobiology and osteoarthritis. Biorheology. 43: 603–9.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  41. 41.
    Herzog W, Federico S. 2006; Considerations on joint and articular cartilage mechanics. Biomech Model Mechanobiol. 5: 64–81.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    Macan J, Bundalo-Vrbanac D, Romic G. 2006; Effects of the new karate rules on the incidence and distribution of injuries. Br J Sports Med. 40: 326–30.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. 43.
    Irrgang JJ, Delitto A, Hagen B, et al. 1995; Rehabilitation of the injured athlete. Orthop Clin North Am. 26: 561–77.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  44. 44.
    Pearce PZ. 2006; Prehabilitation: preparing young athletes for sports. Curr Sports Med Rep. 5: 155–60.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  45. 45.
    Young CC. 2002; Extreme sports: injuries and medical coverage. Curr Sports Med Rep. 1: 306–11.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  46. 46.
    Liberman M, Mulder D, Sampalis J. 2000; Advanced or basic life support for trauma: meta-analysis and critical review of the literature. J Trauma. 49: 584–99.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. 47.
    Svenson JE, O'Connor JE, Lindsay MB. 2006; Is air transport faster? A comparison of air versus ground transport times for interfacility transfers in a regional referral system. Air Med J. 25: 170–2.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. 48.
    Rubin AL. 2004; Safety, security, and preparing for disaster at sporting events. Curr Sports Med Rep. 3: 141–5.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.1st Special Operations Support Squadron, Battlefield Airman ClinicAir Force Special Operations CommandHurlburt FieldUSA

Personalised recommendations