Karate Vs Kickboxing – Which is Better?

Choosing to practise a martial art is a great way to get fit, learn new skills and build life-long friendships, however, picking a martial art style that is right for you can be challenging. From kickboxing to BJJ, Karate to MMA, each style has its own unique characteristics and benefits. ICC is the kickboxing centre Campsie, Marrickville and locals from surrounding suburbs trust for expert coaching in a friendly and welcoming environment. We offer 4 styles of martial arts, making us an all-in-one mixed martial arts combat centre. Here we will take a look at the differences between two popular striking martial art styles – karate and kickboxing.

The Differences Between Karate and Kickboxing

While both are primarily striking martial arts that use kicks and punches to incapacitate an opponent quickly and decisively, there are many differences when it comes to philosophy, rules and technique.


Karate focuses on peace, meditation, calmness and focus. Meditation is an integral part of karate, and it’s important to be in the right state of mind if you want to succeed. The philosophy of karate states that you should avoid every conflict if possible. While it is inevitable that conflict will happen in life, when it arises, your opponent deserves respect, and you should aim to finish the conflict quickly. Every strike or move in karate is designed either to defend yourself from an incoming attack with as little damage inflicted as possible.

The philosophy of kickboxing focuses on power and force, but the main purpose is also self-defence. Every strike is delivered with maximum force, you move forward with aggression and strike to incapacitate your opponent by inflicting damage. You will learn a lot of counter-attacks, enabling you to fend off any potential attacks.


In karate, it’s not important how hard you hit, but where and how you do it. Reading your opponent and being able to react accordingly is vital. Every move and strike is meant to finish a fight quickly, avoiding damage if possible. Karate moves tend to sacrifice power for quickness and precision.

The kickboxing technique is designed to maximise damage. It uses muscle strength and the entire momentum of the body to maximize the power and force behind every strike. Forward movement, hip rotation and incredible footwork are trademarks of the kickboxing technique.


While Kickboxing encourages full contact, Karate allows only mild, light contact. Karate utilises a distinct point system, whereby there are techniques worth 1, 2, or 3 points, and the winner is the competitor who takes an eight-point advantage first or has more points when the time runs out.

In Kickboxing, you win either by knockout or the judges’ scorecards when the time runs out. You don’t get points for each strike landed, your entire performance is scored instead.

Which Is Better for Fitness?

Both karate and kickboxing are high energy sports which burn an impressive amount of calories per session. Most karate and kickboxing training classes offer a similar full body workout in their warmups, drills, techniques, and sparring. If you are considering karate or kickboxing to improve your physical fitness, either one will ensure a great workout and deliver results. At ICC, we offer specific fitness kickboxing classes which combine martial arts techniques with fast-paced cardio for the ultimate workout. To check out our fitness kickboxing classes, Campsie locals should get in touch with us today.

So, Which Should I Choose?

When deciding between karate and kickboxing (or fitness kickboxing), there’s a couple of things to ask yourself:

What are the goals that you wish to achieve?

Do you want to learn self-defence skills?

Do you want to compete and progress in the sport?

Do you also want to learn valuable life skills?

It’s important to do your research into both martial arts, and then determine which offers the training style that you will enjoy and want to stick to.

For Karate and Kickboxing Training, Marrickville Relies On ICC

If you are looking for a high quality, welcoming fitness kickboxing school near Campsie, Integrated Combat Centre is the ideal choice. With classes and programs for all ages and abilities across karate, kickboxing, MMA and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, now is the time to book a free trail and work out which martial art style suits you best. Book online now or get in touch by calling us today.

Give our BJJ program a go and experience the improvements to all of these fields. It is considered to be an excellent first style where the skills are easily transferable.


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