THE BLOG

Day 66! Kickboxing - Aroundthefitnessworldin80days

18/09/2013 12:23 BST | Updated 16/11/2013 10:12 GMT

Sunday, 7th July 2013

See the full blog review (and pictures!) here!

There are only 14 more days to go! 2 weeks! Wowzers. Let's have some stats shall we (probably should've done this earlier)...

(1) Average calories-burnt-per-minute for the first (/last) 30 classes is 3.68 (4.69) - an average of 185 (211 calories per session).

(2) Average session length for the first (/last) 30 classes is 53 mins (47 mins).

(3) The top 7 leaders in the calories-burnt-per-minute leaderboard have all been since Day 42 Sweat Factory onwards.

Note: I am not counting the first few days at fatcamp or when I'd forgotten my watch (Ditzy).

Are the classes getting harder? Was I subconsciously easing myself in at the beginning? I have acknowledged that a lot of the more recent classes have been, in general, more intensive than I remember from the start of the 80-day challenge. While doing a different class every day is great for trying all sorts of new ways to fitness (yep, it is now a verb), one downfall is not being able to see any progression or distinct improvement with any one Fitivity. I know that the progression is surprisingly fast for Pole Dancing (Day 6) and Boxing (Day 16) but that's only because I started both of those Fitivities before the 80-day challenge. I had feared that I'd deteriorate at these since I hadn't danced or boxed in a couple of months. And I'm so sad to say that it's true.

Today's class was kickboxing, which, as you may have guessed, is a combination of boxing and kicking. And the boxing part is, unsurprisingly, quite similar to Day 16 Boxing. Perhaps it was nerves from being in a new place (though really, you'd think I'd be used to trying new places by now) but I found the boxing tough - my stamina was poor, my punches felt a bit awkward and there wasn't the satifying BAM! when you place a good, solid hit. Sigh. Double sigh.

Credit to Instructor Phil, who kindly took me for my trial session (which ended up being a 1-1 trial at the side of the dojo!) - his enthusiasm and passion for the art and the dojo was clear and shone through throughout the session. Over the hour-long session we covered some intro to the art, basics of punching, some kicking techniques and did some short intense bursts of conditioning, with Instructor Phil providing non-stop encouragement. I've realised the art is very respectful - you'll hear the students should "huy" a lot (there was a class going on at the same time), which Instructor Phil explained was the respectful response in place of "yeah, uh huh, ok, gotcha" and I noticed during the warm-up that latecomers will ask permission to join the class before stepping onto the dojo mat. It was nice to see and yes, kind of reminded me of Karate Kid...

One point to note is that you don't have to be an overly aggressive person to take up kickboxing. Sure, you punch and kick pads (or bags) but there is no obligation to spar or fight against an actual human. Instructor Phil mentioned that for most, the progression onto sparring is at a pace so that it seems like a natural next step but there are people who can still progress through the first few belts without needing to spar. There is also no age restriction - the class on today had a huge range of people, from younger and clearly fit to older (and still seemingly fit!). Everyone seemed incredibly friendly and there was a very warm atmosphere in the dojo. Not like a Cobra Kai dojo at all!

The Need To Know:

- Where: The Martial Arts Place (http://www.themartialartsplace.com)

- Nearest Station: Swiss Cottage (4mins)

- When: Beginners' classes 6 times a week (everyday except Fri/Sat)

- How Much: Trial class available - best to contact them for prices and summer offer currently on

The Want to Know:

- Who's it For: For those who want to learn a martial art in a friendly place

- Sweat Scale: 8/10 on average

- Strength / Cardio / Flexi / Tone: Strength / Cardio (and skill!)

- Complexity: 8/10. Technique is never easy

- Fun Factor: 8/10. Energy release!

- Changing Facilities: Changing room and toilet.

- Instructor Inspiration: 8/10. Very passionate about the art

The Stats:

- Total Time: 53mins

- Calories Burnt: 249. Would've been higher during normal class! We had some rest time chatting...

- Average Heart Rate: 120bpm

- Max Heart Rate: 165bpm