Difference Between Kickboxing and Boxing

Kickboxing vs Boxing

All of us are aware of what boxing is. However, people become confused when they hear the word Kickboxing as they think of something similar to boxing. It is true that kickboxing is also a combat sport just like boxing, but despite similarities with boxing, it has many differences that will be highlighted in this article.


Kickboxing is the name given to a group of martial arts that have evolved from Muay Thai, karate, and a form of boxing that has been played in the western world as a type of contact sport. As the name implies, kickboxing allows players to strike with their feet. This makes it very interesting to watch for the spectators as they see players attacking with both their hands, as well as feet while at the same time defending themselves with the help of various techniques. A player can even hit the opponent using his elbows and knees. To a neutral observer, kickboxing appears to be an interesting blend of karate and American boxing.

While Kickboxing in Japan originated in 1930’s, it got introduced in America in the 70’s There are many different formats of kickboxing with Japanese kickboxing, American kickboxing, Muay Thai or Thai kickboxing, and so on.


Boxing is an intense combat sport that is played at the level of Olympics though there is also the World Cup of boxing. The names that spring to one’s mind when he hears the word boxing are those of Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, and Mike Tyson. Boxing is played both at the amateur as well as professional level with those participating at the Olympics being amateurs. Boxing is a grueling contact sport in which players, called pugilists, throw punches at each other to knock down or to win on the basis of points won. Boxing as a sport is a very ancient one, and it was played in ancient Olympics at Greece more than 2000 years ago. In modern boxing match, there are three rounds of three minutes each and a boxer is declared the winner on the basis of points earned from referees though, quite a number of fights are won through knockout or simply KO.

Kickboxing vs Boxing

• Boxing is a very old contact sport whereas kickboxing is a modern sport that has evolved from several martial arts.

• In boxing, a player can only make use of his hands to throw punches at the opponent and cannot hit below the waist.

• In kickboxing, a player can use both his hands as well as feet to hit the opponent, and he can hit at anybody part of the opponent.

• Boxing is an Olympic sport whereas kickboxing is not.

• Boxing is only of a single type whereas there are several variations of kickboxing such as Japanese kickboxing, American kickboxing and Muay Thai.

• One can hit the opponent with elbows and even knees in kickboxing, making it an interesting sport to watch for the audience.

• Boxing rounds have duration of 3 minutes, whereas kickboxing rounds are of 2 minute duration.