Welcome to the Knowledge. Here you will find the Equipment, the Rules, and how The Point System works in Savate.

The Origins of Savate

Savate, or Boxe Francaise as coined by Charoles Lecour in 1838, is the official martial arts of France. Its past can be traced to street fighting and self-defense now matches are held in a ring similar to boxing. Although the techniques used in Savate may seem similar to other martial arts on a closer examination many boxing and kicking styles in this discipline have their own unique variations.

The Gear

The fighters wear gloves similar to boxing gloves, but with longer cuffs for better protection against the kicks landing on the forearms (parade en protection). Present day costume consists of a spandex suit, for complete freedom of movement, and specially constructed shoes with hard toe-capes. A kick from one of these shoes can break a rib, or crack an arm.


The Gloves

Vital to a savateur, ‘les Gants’ or savate gloves are ideally 14 ounces, never lower than 12 and can increase depending on the weight of the savateur.

The Clothing

The clothing are body fitted athletic wear. For training they can be shorts, or Combat Training Pant Tights. For the Top T-shirts are fine as long as they are not lose and form fitting. For your hands it is recommend to wear hand wraps.

Vital Safety pieces

  • Mouth Guard
  • Shin Guards
  • Groin Protection (men)


The Footwear

Savate has a specific type of footwear, wrestling shoes or Savate boots.

What to looks for in a shoe

  • Flat soles
  • Lightweight
  • Ankle Support
There is more to the sport then just the equipment

The Rules

The rounds in Savate are shorter than boxing rounds. Rounds may have a time limit of one minute, one and a half minutes, or two minutes, with a one minute break between rounds. The only protection worn is a mouthpiece, groin protector, gloves, and shin protectors (somewhat thin) are optional but recommended.
There is a referee who ensures fair play and sees that all the simple etiquette relating to the spectators, the seconds, and fighters is observed.


Points are scored and a knockout or severe injury signals the end of the contest within a Full contact bout. The other type of sparring involves light contact, known as Assaut. The winner is decided by points.

The Points for Touch

Here are the basic rules for Touch Savate. There are also points for being the ‘dominate’ in a fight and Technique.

1 Point

Low Kick or a Punch

2 Point

Medium to High kick

4 Point

High kick


Savate has a ranking system similar to Karate, except there is no belt. Instead, Savateurs are ranked by a colored glove ranking system called simply ‘gants’, French for gloves. Every glove color has a specific theme.


The ‘gant d’argent’ (silver) ‘premier’ (first), ‘deuxieme’ (second), and ‘troisieme’ (third) degree technique is the highest non-competitive grade.

A competition ranking is also established as ‘gant de bronze’, and ‘gant d’argent’ ‘premier’, ‘deuxieme’, and ‘troisieme’ degree.



These are articles on Savate that you may find interesting

Frequently Asked Questions