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5 Kenpo karate moves for full-body fitness

Michele Borboa, MS is a freelance writer and editor specializing in health, fitness, food, lifestyle, and pets. Michele is a health and wellness expert, personal chef, cookbook author, and pet-lover based in Bozeman, Montana. She is also...

Kenpo Karate: Martial arts fitness

If aerobic dance classes have you yawning, punch and kick your body into shape with Kenpo. Ellen Nalaboff, celebrity fitness guru, life coach, and owner of Ellen's Fitness Studio in New York, challenges you to try this five-move Kenpo karate workout – it not only shreds calories, it will strengthen and tone every muscle in your body.

Kenpo Workout

Nalaboff doesn't just believe in a fit body, she focuses on teaching clients to be strong in both body and mind to achieve optimal health and wellness. This "transformation guru" has a number of accolades and certifications, including one from the Deepak Chopra Center in primordial meditation, and she is ever-ready to give clients the tools they need for physical and mental fitness. To get the most out of Nalaboff's full-body Kenpo workout, keep your mind engaged with every punch, kick and strike. Give every move intent and purpose.

Warm up – 5 to 10 minutes

Before you begin, be sure your body is warmed up and ready to move. Walk and jog in place for a few minutes then do jumping jacks, easy squats and lunges, gentle side bends, slow punching and low kicking to prepare your muscles for more intense work.

1Square horse reverse punchSquare horse reverse punch

Works quadriceps, glutes, back, forearms

Start position: Stand with feet slightly more than shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent and your back straight. Extend your right arm straight out with a clenched fist and place your left elbow at your rib cage, left arm bent and left hand clenched in a fist.

Movement: Alternate punches rapidly and forcefully, exhaling as you punch.

Perform: 10 reps each side for 3 sets

Up next: More Kenpo karate moves >>

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