Over the past 20 years, Belarusian teams have achieved tremendous success in kick boxing and Muay Thai boxing, becoming some of the strongest in the world.
Martial arts' beginnings in Belarus go back to the late 1980s. During the Soviet era, some types of martial arts were banned for the general public. At that time the authorities worried that people would be able to resist the police and the KGB.
As a result, martial arts were reserved exclusively for soviet security forces and intelligence agents. This only increased the popularity of the sports, however, as practising kick boxing became viewed as a challenge to the system.