5 Factors that Win a Fight

We can all spot a good kickboxer when we see one - the techniques come from nowhere, the forms are perfect and you never know what's coming next. There are 5 basic factors that mark a good kickboxer from a great one, and make the difference between winning a losing the competition.

1. Speed

If you can move faster, you can land more techniques - it's fairly simple. Training yourself to get faster also helps you build stamina as you have to push yourself harder and harder on the pads and in sparring sessions to land your punches and kicks faster than before.

2. Stamina

Without stamina, you can't last the entire fight - rounds might sound fairly short at a few minutes, but when you're bouncing, kicking and punching almost every second of them you'll get very worn out if you don't train hard enough. By the third round, fighters are often lowering their guard and hitting slower, which means that a fit fighter can win by gaining points in the third round even if they didn't score as many in the first or second.

3. Unpredictability

If you can't see a technique coming, you can't guard against it. The neater your kicks and punches are, and the faster you are at throwing them, the more points you'll score.

4. Adaptability

Roughly the same as unpredictability, with a slight twist. Most fighters have a particular style, and in serious competitions your opponent and their coaches will study your style. If you can change it to suit your opponent's weaknesses, you're at a clear advantage. Most styles are developed according to the fighter's weaknesses (and playing to their strengths) so to be able to adapt your fighting style you need to have consistent techniques; your punches need to be as good as your kicks, you need to be as good with your left leg as you are with your right and you need to be as fit as you are fast. Being a well-rounded fighter can often win more competitions than being fantastic at one particular technique, but average at the rest.

5. Dedication

Probably the most important factor of all. To be a fast, fit, well-rounded fighter, you need to train hard, and train often. The fighter that wins will be the one that eats right, exercises consistently, takes care of themselves and always pushes themselves beyond their comfort zone. A fighter isn't made in a week or in a class - it's a lifestyle choice.

For information on training and classes, go to Ultimate Kickboxing in North London.

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