Difference between Taekwondo and Kickboxing

Key difference: Taekwondo is a Korean martial art form, whereas Kickboxing is a Japanese martial art as well as a combat sport form.

Taekwondo is a Korean martial art form; it is way of foot and fist used for applying the actions. The name Taekwondo is derived from the Korean words: "Tae"- foot, "Kwon"- fist and"Do - way of.

Taekwondo is a modern form of martial art, which emphasizes more on the fist and foot actions. It comprises of fast and quick spinning kicks. It is said to be "The art of Kicking and Punching" or "The art of unarmed combat". It is a form of a sport in the modern Korea. The traditional Taekwondo typically relies upon the martial art forms, which were established in the 1950s and 1960s in the South Korean military. It was also practiced in various civilian organisations, including schools and universities. Whereas, the modern Sport form of Taekwondo is developed in the decades since the 1950s. It is further subdivided into two main styles. One style is practiced by International Taekwon-Do adherents and the other style derives from Kukkiwon, the source of the sparring system sihap gyeorugi. Taekwondo has four disciplinces which are explained in a seperate page/chapter of this site. The four disciplinces are:

  • Patterns
  • Sparring
  • Self-defence
  • Breaktest

Kickboxing is a Japanese martial art form, which mainly comprises of kicks and boxing techniques. It was historically developed from karate, Muay Thai and Western boxing. The modern Muay Thai has taken as influence from both Japenese and  American Kickboxing.

Kickboxing is an art form as well as a type of martial sports, which is solely based on kicking and punching. It is practiced for self-defense, general fitness, or as a contact sport. It utilizes several striking and fighting styles that fall under the categories of sport martial arts. This art form is practiced mainly in Japan, America, and Thailand along with the other parts of the world. It is considered as a hybrid sport; it integrates movements and traditions from many different sports, such as karate and boxing. It involves kicking, punching, elbow and knee strikes, throws, locks, and grappling techniques during a fight. It also involves standard kicking and punching techniques. It has three main defensive styles, with variation in each style based on the fighter. It is also very popular for weight loss and to develop general fitness.

Comparison between Taekwondo and Kickboxing:




They are

Taekwondo is a Martial Art form with the main emphasis on kicks.

Kickboxing is a sport of hands with added kicks.





It is performed with an aim of self-protection.

It is taken from sports point of view.

Body parts

Here, the feet and hands are used for the actions.

Here, most of the time hands are used for the actions.

Gloves used   Generally, they either use open-fingered or close fingered gloves.

Generally, they use hook and loop gloves.


Along with the martial art, it is also a sport activity with rules that limit the full art.

It is basically a sport activity, which can be used for self-defense.


Here, the punches and kicks are hard and straight.

Here, there is a continuous kick along with the continuous kicks on the face of the opponent.


  • International Taekwon-Do
  • World Taekwondo Federation (WTF)
  • World Association of Kickboxing Organizations
  • World Kickboxing Association
  • International Kickboxing Federation

Image Courtesy: cs.middlebury.edu, iconshock.com

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kick boxing is best..

Just to Add "The modern Muay Thai were developed from Kickboxing" is incorrect. Muay Thai was a huge influence on Kickboxing both Japanese and American - NOT the other way around. 2 different sources but both originate from Karate/TaeKwonDo and Muay Thai as well as Western Boxing. Muay Thai is around 2000 years old - Kickboxing is less than 100 years old

ur welcome and
thank you for your extra information buddy!!! the changes have been made...

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