Stand tall with your feet separated to shoulder-width apart. Stagger your stance by pulling your dominant leg back by approximately 12 to 18 inches so that your lower body rotates by 45 degrees. For example, right-handed kickboxers will rotate their body to the right and those that are left-handed will rotate to the left. The stance should feel narrow enough so that you are able to spring into action but wide enough to provide a stable base on which you can maintain your balance.
Distribute your weight evenly across both feet. Stay on the balls of your feet. Slightly bend the knees; bent knees help to prevent a fracture should your opponent come at you with a side kick.
Make a fist with each hand, bend your elbows and bring your hands in front of your face. The elbows should be pointing down toward the floor rather than out to the sides. Position the left hand approximately 6 to 8 inches from your face. Place the right hand at the right side of your chin.
Rotate your upper body to be in alignment with the lower body. For example, if you are right handed, then rotate your torso toward the right until your shoulders are stacked over your hips. The rotated position gives your opponent a much smaller target area.
Hug your elbows into your ribs. Turn both fists to face each other. Tuck your chin into your front shoulder. The chin is the most vulnerable part of your face during a kickboxing match; tucking it down helps it to stay protected. Keep your eyes on your opponent at all times.