October 2nd, 2018

Fitness

Exercise is important, but there are a lot of ways you can get it.  Jogging, biking, weight training, yoga, the list is nearly endless.  One option that’s open to you is martial arts, and there’s a lot you can say in its favor.  No matter which style you choose and no matter how seriously you take the competitive side of martial arts, you can get some solid health benefits thanks to the intense workout it demands.

Cardiovascular

While you might think of martial arts as being all about strength and short, intense matches, it demands plenty from your heart and lungs, too.  Your martial arts gym may or may not have a track for running or jogging, but your instructor will want you to jog or run on days when you aren’t practicing your forms or your technique.  At the same time, that regular practice will bring your heart rate up and keep it there.  That will improve your heart strength and bring down both your blood pressure and your resting heart rate.

Strength and Flexibility

The goal of martial arts is to teach students how to defend themselves and win competitions using bare hands or traditional weapons.  This demands that students use all the muscles in their body, and that’s true even if they only use their hands to strike like with boxing.  Martial arts improve more than just muscle size, too:

Mobility

Movement speed is essential in every martial art.  If you can strike at your opponent and they can’t hit back, you’ll always win.  That’s why martial arts can improve your speed and agility.

Flexibility

Some martial art styles focus on natural movements, but others push you to try more demanding moves like high kicks, jumping attacks, and throws.  However, even something like boxing can improve your flexibility by making you work your joints and stretch after every session.

Coordination

You need to be precise in martial arts if you want to strike a moving target or perform a difficult move.  This means you need to practice and improve your body coordination and hand-eye coordination.

Mental Health

Your mind and your body are both parts of the complete package that is you, and if you want to improve your physical health then you’ll need to improve your mental health at the same time. Fortunately, martial arts helps with this.  Both practicing and sparring demand focus and concentration, and you’ll be able to see both improve as you learn your chosen style.  On top of that, exercise of any kind can help reduce your stress.

Something simple like running or weight training can help improve one aspect of your health, but martial arts demand improvements to every aspect of your health and fitness.  In fact, your martial arts training may involve both running and lifting weights.  Thanks to that, signing up for martial arts classes of any kind is a sure way to lose that body fat, build muscle, and get that trim figure you’ve always wanted.