benefits of martial arts

15 Benefits of Martial Arts

There are so many different martial arts from all around the world that it’s difficult to even talk about them on a general level.

Certainly, they can be grouped, analyzed, and systematized in different ways, but the fact is that martial arts are generally very complex and very diversified.

I’ve talked about a lot of them on the site – in more or less detail – but this article will be a little different. Why?

I am going to talk about the general benefits of martial arts and why you should start practicing one so stick with me to find out more!

1. Martial Arts Are for Everyone

One of the best things about martial arts is that it’s very broad and includes a lot of techniques, which means that anyone can find something that fits them.

Martial arts encompass so many different disciplines, styles, and approaches, which means that you’ll certainly find something that suits your interests and preferences.

lso, because of this width, they can be practiced by practically anyone.

So, whether you’re a man, woman, young, old, or whether you’re a manual laborer or hold a Ph.D. – you can find something in martial arts that suits you.

It’s also good because you can adapt your training according to your preferences and it doesn’t matter at what age you start with martial arts, because it’s never too late to do it. 

2. Martial Arts Are Effective and Realistic

Martial arts are diversified, but they don’t usually have such essential differences, at least in the fighting aspect of the training.

But, unlike some disciplines and even combat sports, martial arts are more realistic and can prepare you for more real-life situations.

You probably won’t, for example, enter into a real-life situation where you’ll use your karate skills in the same way you use them during practice, but, the other hand, martial arts are so diverse that they will surely, at one point or another, imitate a real-life situation better than the most thing that comes to mind at one point.

Since it prepares you for a real-life situation, it is certainly more effective than some other similar disciplines. 

3. Martial Arts Training Can Serve as a Full-Body Workout

Martial arts are not just a good fighting preparation, they are also great for a workout.

Since a lot of martial arts disciplines use specific training techniques that activate your whole body, it’s only logical that martial arts provide an excellent full-body workout for you.

They will activate and engage every part of your body – from head to toe – and will burn up to 1,000 calories per one-hour session for you (depending on the art)!

Be sure to check out my article about building muscle and losing weight with martial arts where you can learn more about it.

4. Doing Martial Arts Is Dynamic and Fun

Martial arts training can be a good replacement for fitness training, but they are usually so much more.

Fitness can be boring and monotonous, even if you do it in a group. The exercises are usually the same and after a while – it all becomes a routine.

In martial arts, you’ll achieve the same results, but with a much more dynamic approach that will stimulate not just your body, but also your mind.

Martial arts are so much more than regular fitness that it can be described as a completely new level of fitness training, an upgraded version with which you’ll have to do more, but also achieve more in less time. 

5. Martial Arts Help with Self-Defense

One of the latest significant studies about aggravated assaults states that the number of assaults is dropping (14% decrease from 2005 to 2014). [1]

But, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t know how to defend yourself if that situation arises.

Although self-defense is – directly or indirectly – a part of a vast majority of combat sports and martial arts, the latter usually offers a more precise, complete, and focused approach to self-defense than the former (with some exceptions).

Due to the fact that martial arts rely heavily on a complete combat philosophy, they will teach you a lot of different defensive (and offensive) techniques, which means that you can learn a variety of different self-defense techniques by training martial arts.

If you relate this aspect to the one mentioned in point 2, you will quickly deduce that the realism of martial arts is an excellent addition to the self-defense techniques you’ll certainly want to learn, because – it’s better to be safe than sorry. 

If you are interested, check out my article where I ranked best martial arts for self-defense.

6. Doing Martial Arts Is Good for Strength

Due to the fact that martial arts are both demanding and physically straining, you’ll have to be quite strong to successfully follow all the training sessions.

But not all people start doing martial arts fully prepared and bulked like Anthony Joshua. No, most people start off slowly and then work until they reach the desired level.

Martial arts are good because they enable you to work and upgrade your strength in a relatively short period of time.

So, if you want to become strong quickly, martial arts are definitely something you should try. 

7. Doing Martial Arts Helps with Conditioning

This part is closely related to the one before. Namely, strength and conditioning usually come in pairs and if you work on one, you’ll automatically increase the other.

Conditioning is important if you want to follow martial arts training sessions and become better and just like with strength, martial arts will allow you to work on that part quickly.

You’ll still have to put a lot of effort and dedication if you want to achieve something quickly, but just imagine the satisfaction when you finally get to where you wanted to be when you started!

8. Martial Arts Training Increases Competitiveness

Although you don’t have to become a professional fighter, martial arts will certainly try to increase your competitive spirit and if you allow it to do so, it will succeed.

Martial arts are very competitive and that kind of spirit doesn’t come just with professional fighting.

It comes from the beginning, from the starting point of a martial arts career – the training arena.

So, whether you want it or not, martial arts will train you to want to be better, to actually be better.

Of course, it’s up to you how you’re going to use that competitive spirit – you can become a pro or just a recreational sportsman – but your competitive spirit will certainly increase and you can easily translate that into other fields. 

9. Martial Arts Teaches Respect

Although martial arts are usually perceived as aggressive, brutal, and vulgar, with a lot of trash-talking, it actually teaches you how to respect your opponent and the rules of the game, which is especially typical for most Oriental martial arts.

To be frank, this is a thing all combat sports and, as I’ve said, martial arts especially, but even if it doesn’t look like it – martial arts will certainly teach you respect.

Respect is very important in martial arts. You have to respect your coach, your opponent, your rules and you will never become a good and well-respected fighter until you give the necessary respect to others. 

10. Martial Arts Teaches Problem Solving

Interestingly enough, martial arts can be just as effective as chess in some specific aspects. Or to be more precise, regular exercising can improve memory and thinking skills. [2]

They won’t stimulate your brain the same way as chess, but martial arts are a very unpredictable discipline that requires concentration and constant mental activity.

You have to watch out for your opponent, you have to apply an adequate tactical approach and you have to know how to get out of a tight spot.

Certainly, your physical predispositions are more important, but brute force won’t get you very far if you’re fighting an intelligent opponent who knows how to play to his strengths and to your weaknesses. 

11. Martial Arts Help You Build Confidence

Building on point 8, it has to be said that martial arts will also increase your confidence.

Confidence usually comes from self-satisfaction and by elevating your stamina, your physique, and your boldness, martial arts will raise your confidence to new levels.

After seeing what you can do in the ring and during training sessions, you will use the newly found energy in all other aspects of your life, so it’s not surprising that martial arts have their psychological benefits as well. 

12. With Martial Arts You Will Learn New Skills

Martial arts will teach you something new.

Even if you’re not a complete “noob” when it comes to combat sports and martial arts, the complexity and diversity of martial arts will always allow you to learn something new, no matter what, because it offers a lot when technique and combat are concerned.

This is also a psychological benefit of martial arts, but it can be related to several aforementioned points.

So, if you want to broaden your horizons and learn something new, martial arts will certainly give you enough material to do exactly that, so don’t hesitate and use it to your advantage. 

13. You Will Socialise More

Although you probably won’t start doing martial arts to find new friends, it’s one of those benefits that comes with the programme, whether you want it or not.

Although the fights are one-on-one, training sessions don’t have to be; plus, you’ll always meet new people in the gym.

So, with everything going on, you’ll learn how to be a part of a larger, new group of people who share the same interest and passions as you do, and that is always a good thing. 

14. Martial Arts Help You with Stress

You know those rooms full of stuff and furniture, where you can pay to go and smash stuff? It’s a very efficient form of stress relief, albeit a tad destructive.

Well, martial arts work in a similar way. Namely, the punches, the kicks, and the “aggression” of martial arts are actually a great form of stress relief and it’s certain you’ll benefit from it. 

15. You Never Know…

You might not become Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Ip Man, or some other martial arts legend, but – you just might?

Martial arts careers are often unpredictable and it is the underdogs who surprisingly succeed on many occasions.

You never know – you might just be one of them so it would be a shame if you missed your chance!

What Next?

Now that you know how beneficial martial arts are, check out which martial art you should choose to start with.

Vladimir Vladisavljevic has been training in the art of kickboxing for over seven years, holds a Taekwondo black belt, and has a master's degree in sports and physical education. He's also a huge mixed martial arts fan. He's a big deal in Bulgaria as a mixed martial arts commentator, analyst, and podcaster.
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Vladimir Vladisavljevic

Vladimir Vladisavljevic has a master's degree in sports and physical education. He has been training in kickboxing for over seven years and holds a Taekwondo black belt. He's also a huge mixed martial arts fan. Vladimir is a big deal in Bulgaria as a mixed martial arts commentator, analyst, and podcaster. He was known as The Bulgarian Cowboy in the Western world. In addition, he has a YouTube channel where he talks about his love of esports, one of the fastest-growing fields in the world. Our testing and reviewing method.
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