What is Koga? It’s another form of fusion fitness, a combination of kickboxing and yoga created by Jon Galimulla (who has since changed his name to John Koga). Like Zumba, Koga can increase your stamina and help you lose weight. With Koga, you get the flexibility that yoga offers combined with the cardio and strength building of kickboxing – quite possibly the perfect workout! This hybrid form of exercise works almost every muscle in the body, and helps to sculpt and strengthen as well as increasing your flexibility and stamina. Since both yoga and kickboxing require concentration and flexibility, as well as strength, these two seemingly polar opposite workouts actually work quite well together.
A typical class consists of 15 minutes of warm-up, followed by an intense, 30-minute kickboxing session. After each body part is worked in the kickboxing session, yoga moves focused on that particular body part are incorporated. Think Koga might be the perfect workout for you? For the pros and cons of this fitness craze, see below.
This workout can burn up from 800 to 1200 calories per hour when done correctly. That’s a serious calorie burn for a small time commitment. (To put this in perspective, walking burns about 200 – 500 calories per hour, depending on body size and shape.)
Koga workouts can be tailored to almost any fitness level. The length and level of the kickboxing workouts can be adjusted, as well as the variations of yoga poses. A well trained Koga instructor will help each participant move within his or her fitness level.
Koga is an amazing workout for relieving stress “ the combination of kicking, lunging, and deep stretching will make your everyday worries vanish!
No equipment is required “ you use your own body weight to build strength and flexibility. The only investment is comfortable workout clothes “ no weights, bands, bikes, or other equipment needed.
If you take yoga classes for meditative or calming purposes, Koga is not for you. Yes, yoga stretches are incorporated at the end of each set, but for the most part expect to be kicking, lunging, punching and working up a sweat.
Koga classes may not readily be available in your area. Larger cities will probably offer classes in your area, but smaller towns may not have Koga on their list of available workouts. If you do find the classes offered at your local gym, be sure to observe the class before taking it, because –
Kickboxing and yoga are a dangerous combination if taught by an untrained instructor. Either type of workout can cause injury when attempted by beginners without instruction, and you may find yourself in serious pain when attempting the two incorrectly.