Archived Q&A and Reviews
I need to get myself in gear and start an exercise routine after not really having one for some years. I keep saying I'll do this or that, but it just hasn't happened (I work full- time, have a kid, etc.) In any case, it just occurred to me that a boxing class or something along those lines might be really helpful to me in other ways (self-confidence, self- defense, etc). Like I said, I'm out of shape and don't enjoy the fitness club atmosphere at all. Also, I'd be a total beginner, the only kind of fitness classes I've done are yoga & old aerobics videos from the 80s I live over by Lake Merritt and would prefer a class specifically for women. Any suggestions? Thank you! Melissa
I went to Ken Pitts' Martial Arts Academy for a year or so between when my two kids were born, and really loved it. It's always a really small class, and although it's not specifically for women, women make up about 90% of the participants. It's right above the Blockbuster on Lakeshore: http://www.kpmaa.com/cardioka.php. Also over by you / us is Boxing for Health, but those are co-ed classes (again, I think mostly women take them: http://www.boxingforhealth.net/). I loved Ken Pitts, though, and strongly encourage you to check it out - a great workout in a non-judgmental environment. Anne
Check out the classes at Pitts Martial Arts Academy on Lakeshore (www.kpmaa.com) - I did a couple of evening kickboxing classes there and they were great - small class, all women (although just by chance, and the instructor was a man), great workout. I hadn't kickboxed in over 10 years and wasn't in the best shape, but everyone was very helpful and welcoming. Kickboxing Mama
My 17 year-old daughter wants to take kickboxing classes this summer. But she's not very athletic and feels she probably doesn't want to be in with adults. She needs to be in with a class or environment that is very welcoming and not overly intense at first--fun. Any ideas? Oakland or Berkeley would be best. Thanks
Modern Combatives at 1450 San Pablo is a great place to learn Martial Arts. The owner has a masters in Child Psychology and two Black belts, her husband who teaches there is a retired Berkeley police officer. They've created a great community there. My kids have trained there (7 & 9) for 3 & 4 years respectively. My wife and I started with their adult workout last January. We've never been in better shape. I'm certain they will let you attend a few classes before you decide to join or not.
I used to kickbox in high school and loved it, but over the years I feel like the sport has become really watered- down - every gym offers it, and it's mostly a lot of bouncing around with a few weak air-punches thrown in. Anyone know of a real martial arts studio where I can use gloves and pads, and really hit things? Wanna kick butt
You should check out Oakland Karate and Kickboxing: http://www.oaklandkarateandkickboxing.com I took kickboxing there for a while, and the workouts were fantastic. (I had to stop due to an auto-immune illness, not due to any issues with the classes.) Most of the classes are taught by black belts, some of them are taught by the studio owner who is one of the highest ranked black belts in the Bay Area. My husband trains there and confirms that the moves are real, and the instructors do correct you to be sure you're doing the right technique. The dojo is located on Broadway in Oakland, really close to Oakland Tech.
Four words: Ken Pitts Martial Arts Academy. It's one of the best classes I've taken - it's small, so you get a lot of individual attention (and Ken is a great teacher), and an amazing and varied workout. One day it'll be more cardio-based, with jumping rope and lots of jump-kicks, and the next it'll be very focused on the arms, with lots of punching. You use gloves and bags and pads, and even learn a few moves for if you ever really had to get out of a dangerous situation. I am the thinnest I've been in years (with a baby in the interim!), and I feel strong. Classes are Monday and Wednesday from 7-8pm, Saturday from 9-10am - it's located above the Blockbuster at Grand/Lake. He also offers Capoeira, which you can even do with your kids, and a full range of other martial arts. Check it out: http://www.kpmaa.com/. Highly recommended. Kicking butt
You might be interested to try Krav Maga. Its not exactly kickboxing, but there is lots of full contact work with shields/pads. I did it for several years in the city and found it very practical and engaging. I haven't trained at the berkeley location but this is their website: http://www.berkeleykravmaga.com/ Ben
Ken Pitts Martial Arts Academy is fantastic! His classes are very small, he and Rose are fantastic teachers, and I get a tremendous workout. One day we'll be learning combinations and techniques of stick-fighting, the next it'll be mostly cardio and legs, the next will be tons of abs . . . it's great. I highly recommend it for anyone looking to vary their workout and start feeling strong. They're located at 3298 Lakeshore Avenue above the Blockbuster. Happy at Ken Pitts
I live in El Cerrito and I am looking for a kickboxing class preferable a class in the evening or on the weekends.
Not sure if it's too far for you, but if you're willing to travel to Oakland for a kickboxing class, I highly recommend Oakland Karate and Kickboxing (http://www.oaklandkarateandkickboxing.com/) on Broadway, right off 580. They do martial arts training (Muay Thai, MMA, Karate) as well as fabulous cardiokickboxing classes, which are M-F 6-7pm, T-Th 9:30-10:30am, and Sat 8:30-9:30. The prices are reasonable, the instructors are great, and the place has a very friendly, welcoming vibe for people of all skill levels. The classes vary from night to night; some focus more on strength training, some on cardio, and some on bag work and boxing technique. All the class are tough, quite challenging, and fun. I've been going here for over a year and a half and absolutely love it---I'm 5 months pregnant and still going strong (with a modified, mellower routine of course)! Kate
The Albany YMCA offers kickboxing aerobics classes. Wed. evenings and Friday around noon. R.K.
I need a fun, well-taught Muay Thai Kick-boxing class for my five year old son. Any recommendations or alternate suggestions? Thanks!
Pacific Ring Sports http://www.pacificringsports has classes for kids every Sat from 11am-12 noon, and although kids currently are about the 7-10 year range, they do not turn away any child if he/she expresses interest and can be attentive. You might want to just do a drop-in and see how s/he likes it. Good luck. Muay Thai fan
I live in the Montclair area of Oakland and in the past have heard about a great kickboxing class somewhere in town, but have had no luck on my search. Can anyone recommend a class in or near Montclair? Also, I will need childcare on site during the class. Thank you!
You may be thinking of Montclair Karate and Kickboxing. They moved a few years back. They used to be around the corner from Rite-Aid, where that other fitness place is now. They are now on Broadway near Piedmont Ave. I used to take kickboxing from them, and the rest of my family still trains in karate at the new location. the kickboxing classes still look great. But unfortunately, it is no longer in Montclair. I don't know of any other kickboxing classes in Montclair, but I could be wrong.
Looking for a good kickboxing class in the N. Berkeley/Albany area. Thanks Amy
My son takes karate lessons at the Rohai Dojo on San Pablo Ave, one block past University Ave near the Midas Muffler shop. They have a Saturday 9-10 a.m. cardio-kick boxing class and may have other classes during the week. The class is usually led by Sensei Pam (who also leads the peewee program my son is in) and there are usually more female participants then male.
Berkeley Cuong Nhu Karate/Rohai Dojo Instructor: John Burns 1819 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley, CA 94702 510/526-4880 rohaidojo AT hotmail.com
My son's karate dojo, Berkeley Cuong Nhu on San Pablo between Delaware and Hearst, has a cardio kickboxing class. (Actually, there are 6 class slots spread over 5 days.) I don't know anyone who takes it, but the dojo is a very special place in itself, and I watched women from the class gave a demo last weekend during a general instructor demo. They offer the first lesson free so you can try it out. I'm not sure what the fee schedule is for cardio kickboxing--for karate it's the same per month no matter how many classes you attend. Their phone number is 526-4880. Fran