Hitmonlee is a Pokémon shaped similar to both a human and an egg. Primarily brown, Hitmonlee has cream-colored, segmented arms and legs, with three fingers and three claw-like toes respectively. The muscles on his legs are akin to a coiled spring, being able to freely expand and contract. These muscles are more accurate than his arms, allowing him to perform powerful knee and kick attacks. Hitmonlee has almond-shaped eyes with black rings around them, and his feet have yellow coloration on their ankles and soles. He appears to lack a nose and mouth.
Hitmonlee is a male-only species with no female counterpart.
Hitmonlee possesses a considerable sense of balance, enabling him to kick in succession from any position. When kicking, the sole of his foot turns as hard as a diamond on impact. Hitmonlee knows several kick-based moves, including the rarely seen Blaze Kick. His leg muscles have the special ability to freely stretch and compress. Hitmonlee also has a few mental-based moves such as Meditate and Mind Reader. As with other Fighting-type Pokémon, Hitmonlee is capable of a few Rock-type moves and Earthquake.