Everyone knows that exercise is important, and everyone knows that you’re supposed to get regular physical activity to stay healthy. The trouble is, exercise can be pretty boring. If you’ve ever sat on a bike that goes nowhere for 30 minutes or spent a bunch of time just doing sit-ups, then you know this firsthand. What you may not know is that martial arts, such as muay thai and tai chi, burn a ton of calories, promote balance and help you become part of a social, active community — and that’s just for starters.
The Benefits of Kickboxing and Martial Arts
Did you know a one-hour session of even moderately intense martial arts can burn up to 500 calories? And the whole time you’re burning those calories through kickboxing, muay thai or some other type of martial arts, you’ll be improving your balance and taking a total-body and mind approach to physical fitness. Good martial arts isn’t just about the physical side of things, it encompasses your soul and your brain, too.
Kickboxing is a popular type of fitness that’s based on the ancient art of karate. It combines kicking and punching, and it’s a great way to relieve stress while you improve muscle strength and burn calories. Kickboxing classes often help people improve their posture, muscle strength and overall physical fitness.
Tai chi is a Chinese martial art that was designed as a defensive type of fighting. Tai chi is at least 2,500 years old and it’s based on the philosophy of yin and yang, which means balance. This martial art is used in senior citizen communities because it’s so good for the body, in fact, and it can be practiced by everyone from the very young to the very old. In one study of older adults, 54% said they experienced improved balance and an improved sense of confidence from practicing tai chi.
Brazilian jiu jitsu focuses on grappling and ground fighting moves. The idea of Brazilian jiu jitsu is that even a smaller, weaker person can harness the power of their own body and defeat an opponent using various holds and moves. You’ll be surprised by what your body is capable of when you learn how to perform this martial art.
Muay thai comes from Thailand, and it’s also known as Thai boxing. This martial art is all about focus and discipline, which makes it ideal for children and young adults. The fundamentals of muay thai help practitioners learn both defense and offense using blocking, kicking and punching moves.
Why Martial Arts?
Healthy exercise is beneficial to everyone. The American Heart Association recommends that children over the age of two engage in physical activity for at least one hour a day. In martial arts classes, kids learn how to function within a close community where they interact with their peers. Martial arts is a social activity as well as a fitness activity, and all kids need to know how to develop and hone their social skills in order to be successful in the world.
Less than 5% of adults participate in 30 minutes of physical activity every day, and only one in three adults receive the recommended amount of physical activity they should get each week. The reason why has already been established: exercise is boring. But martial arts are anything but boring. Adult martial arts classes, such as muay thai and tai chi classes, are also social. There’s a strong sense of community among martial arts classes, because you’re learning together and often sparring together. This hands-on type of instruction fosters a sense of closeness and friendship.
Practicing Muay Thai, Tai Chi, Kickboxing and Other Martial Arts
Want to start practicing kickboxing, muay thai or some other type of martial arts? Start by learning in an academy for martial arts that has a commitment to teaching the true fundamentals of the art. Learn how to take a total body, whole mind approach to mastering the martial arts discipline of your choice. When you have the right place to train, you’ll be able to build your confidence, your body and your mind in ways you never even imagined.