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The Benefits Of Martial Arts Training
By Clint Leung
As any martial arts practitioner will tell you, there are
multiple benefits in martial arts training. Of course, the most
obvious benefit is a knowledge of self defense which is one of
the major reasons why the martial arts were developed in the
first place. Knowing how to defend oneself and loved ones in a
potentially dangerous situation is an asset in today’s world
just as it was hundreds of years ago. Unlike often portrayed in
the movies, martial arts are not just about fighting. Many
people take up martial arts for the fitness benefits as well.
Training in martial arts such as karate, tae kwon do, kung fu
and other martial art styles will improve one’s cardiovascular
fitness as well as tone the muscular system. Strength will
increase from the calisthenics usually employed within martial
arts training but perhaps not to the same extent as working out
with weights. But overall power of one’s body will definitely
increase since martial arts techniques teach how to use strength
Most people will also improve their flexibility significantly
while training in martial arts since entire ranges of motion
from the body are exercised. This is especially true with
martial art styles such as tae kwon do, Thai kickboxing as well
as some schools of karate and kung fu where high kicks are used.
All martial art styles will result in an improvement of one’s
coordination as well.
Unlike many other forms of physical activity, martial arts also
have a mental and sometimes spiritual element which not only
improves the mind’s focus but also helps in self control.
Emotions such as anger and fear are better controlled through
martial arts. Many martial artists can find an inner peace
through their training. In today’s hectic world, these
particular benefits translate into one of the most effective
stress management tools available. When training in a martial
arts session or in a group class, all the day to day troubles of
the world seem to be forgotten. People come out refreshed,
energized and ready to tackle the big world out there.
Training in martial arts usually involves many little steps and
progressions. As one advances in a martial art, the feeling of
accomplishment comes with added confidence. This is especially
beneficial for children who were not very confident in the first
place. An increase in self confidence for kids (as well as
adults) will have a cross over effect in other areas of life
such as in other sports and general self esteem. Other
challenges in life, both physical and mental, will be met with
much less fear.
An important benefit of martial arts training for parents to
note is that children will generally become more disciplined
from the unique formalities of martial arts classes. This is one
benefit that is often lacking in other sports. Former ‘problem’
kids with bad attitudes could become well behaved and respectful
as a result of taking martial arts a few times per week. Respect
is something that all martial arts instructors place great
importance in during their classes. Martial arts kids are often
very well behaved children no matter what social economic
backgrounds they come from.
Martial arts training has so many great benefits covering
physical, mental and emotional aspects that it’s no wonder why
it has become one of the most popular activities for both adults
and children. However, it is important to point out that not all
martial arts programs will produce the range of benefits
discussed. Programs that teach just combat fighting techniques
may not result in the desired mental and spiritual benefits so
it is important to search around for the right martial arts
school that will offer the benefits one wishes to achieve.
About the Author: Clint Leung is a lifelong martial artist with
over 32 years of training experience in kung fu, tae kwon do,
karate, kickboxing and martial arts weaponry. He has won
Canadian and world championship titles (NBL and WSKF). He is
also owner of Free Spirit Activewear
(http://www.FreeSpiritActivewear.com) , an online retailer and
designer of premium martial arts activewear. Free Spirit
Activewear has martial arts info articles.