Martial Arts For Fitness Cardio and Flexibility Are a Byproduct of
Martial arts are one form of training that has multiple benefits. One rather obvious benefit is that you learn
fighting and defense techniques that may serve you well at some point in your life.
While we may not seek out physical confrontations, on rare occasions they are unavoidable.
Another benefit of training in the martial arts is the self discipline that you learn in an effort to perfect
This aspect crosses over into our daily lives and benefits our school study habits, focus and discipline at work
and our relationships with other people.
An accomplished martial artist also exudes confidence that is read by those with whom we have contact.
As a fitness exercise, any martial art - judo, karate, taekwondo, kung-fu, savatte, kempo, aikaido, jujitsu or
others - provide a venue for improving our flexibility and cardiovascular health, also some strength-resistance
benefits are derived. This will help prevent athletic injuries for your
Flexibility is critical to being a martial artist. A significant amount of training time is spent
in a specific type of stretching that is designed to increase our joint flexing and muscle and ligament
Leg and torso flexibility is paramount in most of the martial arts since kicking techniques are a large part of
the forms used.
Women tend to be more flexible in their lower bodies and perform well in systems that emphasize kicking like the
Korean styles taekwondo and tang soo do. (Think Chuck Norris)
Every aspect of martial arts training involves cardio fitness.
* The stretching and warm ups are aerobic and are at least the equivalent of fifteen or twenty minutes of
stair-stepping or riding a moderate speed treadmill on a steep incline.
* The practicing of throws, grappling, punching, kicking and blocking techniques also involves low
impact, high repetition moves for a significant period.
* High impact punches, kicks and blocks on a heavy bag will work up a sweat, but are also providing some
resistance training for the muscles.
* Kumite, free-style sparring, pumps up your metabolism, floods your system with adrenaline and expends a lot of
energy. It is very aerobic.
* Kata, a choreographed series of karate moves that involve punches, kicks and blocks while moving in a
predetermined pattern on the floor. Performing kata is like running wind-sprints and is aerobic.
* Push-ups, sit-ups, leg raises, torso bending and twisting are part of martial arts conditioning. These provide
some resistance training, but are also quite aerobic.
Whatever the system or style, martial arts training incorporated into your fitness schedule can be
of great benefit to you.
For many practitioners, the martial arts become a way of life as well as an important fitness regimen. An added
benefit is the confidence of being prepared for nearly any situation.
The added flexibility and conditioning will be of assistance in other aspects of your fitness program. Your
children may be interested in training, too, so this can be a family activity.
Some health and fitness clubs also offer martial arts classes for their members. Otherwise you may seek out
martial arts centers in your local community through the various directories available to you.
Many local colleges and university have martial arts clubs for students, faculty members and other interested
Regardless of you reasons for doing so, the inclusion of martial arts in you health and fitness plan is a good
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