The martial arts have been practiced by many people worldwide for thousands of years. With such a level of popularity, there are certainly many benefits to be accrued through the regular practice of martial arts. If you’re considering beginning a martial arts practice, it will motivate you to stay dedicated to your practice to remember the incredible and far-ranging benefits of martial arts practice. Different people seek out different attributes from their own training, but the varying benefits of a martial arts practice apply are available to all. Consider some of the different benefits you can accrue through beginning your own training in the martial arts and which of those benefits are most vital to you.
When most people consider the positives of a martial arts practice, the most prominent idea that comes to mind is the physical aspect of training. It comes as no surprise that practicing martial arts can have excellent physical benefits. Of those physical benefits, the most immediate and often sought after is weight loss. Beginning a martial arts practice will help those seeking to keep themselves trim to shed those extra pounds and keep them off.
Many martial arts have a high degree of cardiovascular exercise included in their practice—those repeated cardio sessions are an instant formula for weight loss. Taking a 1-hour long Kickboxing class, for example, will burn off roughly 1,000 calories. The importance of martial arts for improving health is due in part to its impact on maintaining a healthy weight. Diseases such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and even asthma are all associated with obesity. By choosing to practice martial arts as a method of weight maintenance, these serious illnesses can be kept at bay. In this way, the martial arts are a great option for bolstering our physical health, both by maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding the health risks associated with not doing so.
Weight loss is only part of the recipe for physical health that a martial arts practice can provide. Just as readily as practicing martial arts can reduce your weight, the practice can also work in tandem with a healthy diet and weight-lifting practice to build muscle. Part of building muscle requires reducing our fat levels, which is something martial arts reigns supreme in doing. This practice will help trim the fat so a more muscular physique can come through. The martial arts provide enough of a strength work out to increase muscle tone, but by coupling your practice with weight-lifting and a healthy diet, you’ll be on your way to a sculpted figure in no time.
One of the physical benefits that practitioners of the martial arts will praise is a benefit that is only realized after having practiced. Once you begin a steady martial arts practice, you’ll be amazed at the athleticism this practice inspires in you. By engaging yourself in a physical discipline, you’ll find that other physical feats are no longer as daunting. It’s not uncommon for those who develop a robust martial arts practice to then branch out into other sports and types of physical training. When you use your body and train it to be at its peak, you’ll find yourself more interested in continuing the physically enriched side of your life by seeking out new and different ways to push yourself physically. As martial arts practice easily transforms the body to live a more physical life but also transforms the mind to seek out a more physically enriched life as well.
There is a laundry list of physical benefits that result from a martial arts practice, but that list is doubled if we consider the mental and emotional benefits of martial arts that are available to practitioners. The first quality that is most associated with a martial arts practice is the development of discipline. Gaining more discipline in your martial arts practice is certainly not something that lives only in the Kung-Fu movies of years past. The value of discipline and the need to cultivate it was well known by the founders of many martial arts and that emphasis on discipline still lives on in the martial arts today. You’ll find a renewed ability to cultivate your own sense of discipline through the regular practice of martial arts. By committing to the practice and staying consistent as well as putting in the effort required to perfect different techniques, your level of discipline will grow, a quality that is invaluable in today’s world where there is plenty of distraction but very little time.
The non-physical benefits of martial arts are just as enticing and life-changing as the physical benefits it affords. Many practitioners of martial arts praise its ability to afford emotional benefits, like stress relief and a sense of calm. The ability to exert oneself physically and push yourself to your limits helps to relieve stress both through the simple fact of being able to let off steam that builds up throughout the day and through the endorphins that result from a strong workout. Many who practice martial arts first begin their practice in pursuit of physical benefits and health only to find that the sense of calm and the stress relief their practice provides them with is infinitely more valuable.
One of the most notable non-physical benefits of martial arts is the guaranteed increase to your self-confidence after developing a committed practice. By making steady efforts to train and improve your martial arts ability, you’ll find more pride and confidence in yourself. Martial arts improves self-confidence as practitioners set small goals for themselves to learn new techniques and achieve those goals, resulting in a strong sense of self-esteem through self-mastery.
The list of ways in which martial arts training can improve our lives can seem endless and with good reason. These ancient training practices have long been used to develop both a practitioner’s body and mind. At the heart of a martial arts philosophy is the belief that for optimum health and a well-lived life, both the mind and body must be developed and function in tandem.