We’ve all been there. Your workout routine is getting stale. It’s not that you don’t like working out…it’s just a bit boring. Lifting weights or endlessly running on a cardio machine can break down even the most dedicated fitness advocates.
Luckily, there are fun alternatives. Spinning classes are one such example of a popular cardio exercise turned into an exciting activity. Still, it leaves a little to be desired. There are only so many ways you can spin the pedals on a bike.
In this article, I’d like to make the case for martial arts as a unique way to get your exercise in while also learning techniques that could one day save your life!
Martial arts are some of the most popular sports in the world, with every country having its own unique variation. In countries like Korea for example, the national sport is Tae Kwon Do and nearly every school child goes through Tae Kwon Do classes before graduation. Many schools have it as a requirement even.
In the states however, we are lucky to have many different styles of martial arts to choose from. While the techniques taught vary drastically from style to style, you can always count on a good workout no matter which style you choose.
Typical martial arts classes start out with a light warmup and stretching. This stretching will drastically increase your flexibility. Studies have shown that increasing flexibility can decrease risk of injury greatly, so this is actually very important as you get older.
Next, you’ll generally study various techniques of the martial art. This is where it gets exciting because you’ll be getting a good workout while practicing these techniques. It truly is a wonderful feeling to know that you’re learning interesting techniques passed down generation to generation. Finally, most classes will finish off with a small strength and conditioning section. Most martial arts rely on body weight exercise instead of lifting weights so you can expect the usuals here such as pushups and sit-ups.
Because there are so many different styles of martial arts out there, it’s easy to find a style that suits you. Don’t be afraid to try out multiple studios before you settle on one to train at. Most martial art studios understand that not everyone prefers the same style, so they generally offer free trials to let you see if their school is right for you.