Although it is a martial art, kickboxing is a hybrid of various styles. It is a hybrid martial art combining the Thai boxing a.k.a. Muay Thai, and the Chinese karate. Kickboxing does not have a mystique of its own unlike other martial arts. It owes its popularity to competitions organized in the US. Kickboxing is one of the toughest sports. It not only requires technique but also strength on the part of the athlete. Since it requires kicking and punching, kick boxers are required to wear gloves, headgear and mouthguards. Kickboxing uses a belt grading system. There are seven belts in kickboxing: white, yellow, blue, orange, light brown and dark brown. A new kick boxer trains to be able to move from white belt to dark brown belt. The dark brown belt is followed by the black belt. Black belt comprises of ten grades. A kick boxer has to be at least 16 years old in order to be entitled to receiving the 1st Dan level and he or she must have been doing kickboxing for at least one year before getting the dark brown belt. A kick boxer has to be at least 57 years old in order to be able to receive the 10th Dan level.