Kickboxing - Rules


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Like other sports, to protect the health and safety of the players, the game has a number of rules and regulations. Every nation has its own federation to govern their respective kickboxing matches. Hence, there may be a minor change in the rules from one nation to another but the major rules remain the same.

  • In case you are playing a full contact match. To win, you must either knock your opponent completely out or else you have to hurt him so badly that he will not be able to play anymore.

  • However, if you are playing a light contact match, then you have to score more points than your opponent. This can only be possible if you have more legal strikes than your opponent.

  • Semi contact matches are similar to that of light contact matches. That means you have to score points by striking the opponent with legal strokes. Points vary between 1 to 3. The player having maximum points at the end of the match is declared as the winner.

  • As this is a physical match, the players are forced to wear protective equipment like head guards, shin and foot guards, mouth guards, groin protectors, etc. In case the player is a female she has to wear chest protector too.

  • Just before the beginning of the match, all players’ weight is recorded to ensure that they have prescribed health and weight standards according to the governing organization.

  • The timing of the matches depends on its type. For example, 3 rounds each of 2 minutes are conducted for semi and light contact type matches. Full contact matches also have the same timing schedule but each round has a period of 1 minute.

The following table indicates the legal punches and strikes that are allowed in the sport of kickboxing.

Strikes Allowed area
Hand strikes
  • Back fists
  • Hooks
  • Jabs
  • Upper cuts
  • Ridge hands
Leg strikes
  • Hook kicks
  • Front kicks
  • Axe kicks
  • Round house kicks
  • Foot sweeps
  • Back kicks


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