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Updated on February 25, 2012
Bill Wallace, one of the first Fullcontact World Champions from Los Angeles, USA
Bill Wallace, one of the first Fullcontact World Champions from Los Angeles, USA | Source

What is Kickboxen?

Kickboxen is the German word for martial art fighting sport 'Kickboxing'. This new art of competitive striking and kicking was developed mainly in the USA during late 1960ies and early 1970ies. Americas first great champion emerged when Joe Lewis of Raleigh, NC, became the first Heavyweight World Champion in Fullcontact combat. The ex-marine soldier was known for it's exceptional martial arts skills that incorporated effective punching methods he learnt from professional boxers. Lewis played in Hollywood movies for some years (Jaguar lives). Until today he teaches his fighting concepts on seminars and sells instructional video tapes. He has published various books and is constantly featured in printed Karate and Kung Fu magazines worldwide.

Some of the other first champions of kickboxing and sport karate were Bill 'Superfoot' Wallace, Howard Jackson, Jeff Smith and Benny Urquidez. Today, kickboxing is represented by many different organisations with each of them offering different rules differentiating between semicontact, light contact and full contact. Oriental rules with leg-kicks below the waist are also very popular in professional fightins events.

Most professional fughters have trasitioned from western rules to free-style and oriental fighting to participate in Japan-style K1-Kickboxing as founded by promoter Fuji. K1 has become very popular among heavy weight fighters like Andy Hug, Branco Cikatic and Mike Bernardo. Other pro kickboxers have decided to venture into pro-boxing and Ultimate Fighting Challenge. Maurice Smith became the first WKA Kickboxing World champion to capture two UFC titles. Troy Dorsey of Dallas, TX became the first Fullcontact ISKA World Champion to capture a professional World boxing champion ship in 1990.


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