Karate vs Boxing? What is Better?

Posted by: John W. Zimmer
Under: martial arts
19 May 2009

19 Responses to “Karate vs Boxing? What is Better?”

  1. Neal Martin Says:

    Boxers are a tough breed. So are most karateka. Both arts have their advantages and disadvantages. What matters at the end of he day is the person using them. If you know what you’re doing you can make the techniques work for you. If you don’t know what you’re doing then you are going to get beaten. Whilst I also think it is wise to cross-train, I also believe you can make any fighting art work for you if you’re skilled enough at using it. The it won’t matter what style you’re up against.

    Good post. Enjoyed it.

  2. Markstraining.com Says:

    The tale of you striking with a backfist and then stopping is a major flaw that many karate ka have. Being used to point fighting, they stop right after striking, most of the time leaving themselves wide open. Hopefully Karate ka will learn from this story. Great post.

  3. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Hi Neal, It is good to know other styles and having done that, yes it does not matter so much what style one favors. Good insight!
    Hi Mark, I became a believer in follow through that night. :)

  4. Jade Says:

    Karate of course! Did you see Lyoto Machida killing Rashad Evans on UFC?

  5. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Hey Jade, I did not see the fight as I am too cheap to pay for the PPV events. I found it here: http://www.mma-core.com/videos/_Lyoto_Machida_vs_Rashad_Evans_UFC_98?vid=10005048&tid=100
    Let me just say – WOW, What a fight! Lyota Machida was bridging the gap and exploding on Rashad Evans. It was kind of interesting to see that the UFC had discounted traditional karate kumite to the point that they did not even have a defense for the moves anymore.
    I’ve always thought that karate hands were quicker than boxers and have loved it when fighters pound that point home. :)

  6. Matt Klein Says:

    I have always said there is no style of martial arts that is the best, but there are best martial artists (or boxers). A good kenpo person can beat a poor boxer, and visa versa. The key is the level and intensity of sparring and training each guy does. Boxers and kickboxers are used to heavy contact and can take a hit. Not all karate people train with this kind of contact. A person with heavy experience in boxing, karate, and ground fighting is the most dangerous, like Machida. I train my students in boxing in addition to kenpo and we even combine the two in many or our combinations. A good kicker is dangerous like Machida demonstrated because he could attack from far away, while he also showed awesome power inside.

  7. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Hi Matt, I’ve never worried too much about the contact coming up because of the “kiss contact” we practiced occasionally knocked people out. :)

  8. ben Says:

    boxing is way more powerfull better footwork can take more most karate clubs teach u to dance nowadays

  9. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Hi Ben,

    I’m not much of a fan of karate aerobics… I like boxing a lot as it helped me become a better kick boxer.

    Thanks for your comment.

  10. ceili Says:

    hey im just trying to find out wich is better because i plan on doing one or the other karate sounds good but boxing sounds like more physical practice than training like in karate because when it comes down to it you will be hitting a person and with karate all you do is train and spar but when you spar you have to go easy on your apponent so i dont know email me at dnttalk2muffintrees@gmail.com to help me decide??? thankyou

  11. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Hi Ceili, go with what you like because the fighting style does not matter so much as the fighter.

  12. John Brown Says:

    Hello John. My name is John too. You mentioned in one of your postings.. “Later when I trained for kick boxing, I learned how to box from a former pro boxer, Johnny Wise. He worked with me and a few other guys to learn some of the finer points of pugilism.” What else can you tell me about Johnny Wise? How well did you know him? When he trained you, where did this take place? Thank you.

  13. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Hi John,

    I wanted to get into kick boxing after I sold my karate school. I do not remember the exact date but it was in 1983 or 1984 I sold the karate school.

    I don’t remember if I met Johnny Wise at the San Diego school as some other guys were getting into kick boxing at the same time or exactly where but Johnny agreed to train me in boxing. For about six months he trained me at the El Cajon American Kenpo Karate school my friend David Hays (he bought the school) owned. The school is not there anymore but it was in the 500 block of El Cajon blvd (two doors down from Dumont’s bar), in El Cajon, CA.

    Johnny was a great trainer from my perspective because he showed up 4 to 5 days a week for 2 hour workouts. He pushed me real hard and made do road work in the mornings if I wanted to train with him (I did the road work). We were just getting to lining up some fights for me and I decided to take another path (I had to make more money for my family and focus on working).

    I did not know him personally other than at the gym but he was very motivating. He had great fight stories and had apparently fought all around the world. I don’t know if he was ever a contender or not but he turned me, a point karate fighter, into a good outside boxing fighter in 6 months.

    He also tried to help some of the San Diego studio guys but he spent most of the effort with me and my buddy Bob in El Cajon.

    How did you know Johnny Wise?

  14. Da Bad Don Says:

    Boxing any day they give much tougher work out and like boxers have died or lost their teeth in one fight boxing wud kill karate with one punch you dont kicks all you need is the elbowz punchz DING DING But karateka is good but ROCKY Made My Boxing career BEST

  15. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Hey Da Bad Don,

    I love boxing workouts as I do kick boxing. Rocky was one of my favorite fight movies.

  16. vivek Says:

    i have done both karate and boxing.i respect both,but by my experience i can say boxer are much tougher.karate is good but there is huge power in a boxer punch and can take over anyone.

  17. John W. Zimmer Says:

    Hi Vivek!

    I think you may be right if you compare a studio karate fighter to a boxer… the training in boxing is intensive. I had to do that for my full contact fighting.

    If your were to compare a kick boxer or mma fighter to a boxer – I think you would find they were both in great shape.

  18. Matt Klein Says:

    I believe Thai kickboxing is one of the best forms of training because it combines the best of both worlds–the powerful punches and combinations of boxing and the elbows, knees, and kicks of the traditional martial arts. Plus the sparring is intense. Combine that with BJJ or wrestling and you have a complete fighter.
    Matt Klein recently posted..The Night I Met Muhammad Ali- Getting What You Want Out of LifeMy Profile

  19. derek Smuddy Says:

    boxing is way better than UFC