On 5 February, 2016
With so many different forms of martial arts, it can be confusing to know which one is best for your needs.
Each style of martial art offers different benefits and it all depends on what you prefer or what area of fitness you’d like to improve. If you’ve decided to try martial arts or not considered it before, here’s a list of a few different kinds of martial arts and their benefits to help you decide which one is best for you:
As a martial art, Kickboxing focuses on aiming strikes, using pads, at any available opening, and is considered to be the art of distraction. You’ll learn important moves with strength and speed, which can help improve your coordination.
Kickboxing can be good for improving your cardio fitness levels, although it can be high impact, it’s still a lot of fun.
Tai Chi is all about slow, controlled movements paired with deep breathing. After being developed in China in the 13th century, it’s now practised all over the world for it’s health benefits. Because it can be considered gentle, it can be great for older people. Studies show it can help people over 65 reduce stress and improve their mobility. This is a low impact exercise, so just about anybody can enjoy it. If you want to increase your activity levels slowly then it’s perfect. A good martial art for relaxation too!
There are multiple types of taekwondo you could take part in, so it depends what you have in your area. Taekwondo can help you develop multiple kicking techniques and strong strikes. Taekwondo is all about quickness, awareness, flexibility, and explosiveness. As the training for this sport focuses mostly on the legs, it can be extremely demanding. Team GB will be competing at the Rio Olympics this year which should help boost its popularity even more.
The techniques learned during karate are great for an all over body workout, making it good for fitness. With this sport, you’ll learn flexibility, co-ordination, and agility. Karate can be a good place for beginners to start in martial arts.
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
Again, you will be required to spar to practice Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. In this sport, you’ll learn sweeps, kicks, chokes, and controlling positions. It’s a beautiful sport, but the only way to get in shape for it, is to do it.
MMA stands for mixed martial arts, and that’s exactly what it is. Suitable for adults, most of the athletes who take part in MMA are familiar with other arts on the list, such as jiu jitsu, muay thai, and even boxing. You can train like an MMA fighter without actually taking part in it. You should expect a light sparring session or two as you train, though! MMA athletes are among the fittest in the world, as so many skills are needed. If you want to get as fit as possible, MMA could be the way to go about it.
Boxing is an excellent form of cardio. If the thought of getting on the treadmill sounds unappealing, boxing could be the answer you’ve been looking for. It burns calories, fat, and teaches some great self defence skills. Boxers are some of the fittest athletes out there! You’ll learn a combination of different punches and be required to be quick on your feet. When practicing, you’ll skip, work on the bag, and practice combinations. Sparring is a good way to practice your skills. It’s a very demanding sport but so worth it when you see your results.
Interestingly, this is the martial art that Bruce Lee was taught before making it his own. However, wing chun is just perfect for those wanting to learn martial arts and get fit. Practicing wing chun can be great for weight loss and better fitness. You’ll have more energy and a better sense of wellbeing too. Not only that, you’ll learn speed, power, coordination and so much more.
Hopefully, this guide has given you a few ideas on the best kind of martial art for you. With most martial arts, you’ll learn so many new skills. You’ll feel happier, more relaxed, and confident. You never know though, you could be a martial arts master in no time!