The yin-yang symbol in martial arts represents balance.
Positive and negative, darkness and light, male and female, and so on. Some yin-yangs have just a dot of white in the black and vice versa, symbolizing good in all evil and darkness in all light. So where do we need balance in our lives?
Obviously, there’s the physical aspect of balance – very early we draw our tiny selves up on our feet and carefully balance our weight as one foot tentatively moves in front of the other. Physical balance evolves next, such as learning to ride a bicycle, do gymnastics or perform challenging moves like elevated sidekicks or pole vaulting. But balance goes much deeper than this.
There is balance we strive for in our diet: fruits, vegetables, proteins, milk and carbohydrates in healthy proportions. Our personalities must also be balanced, not wildly energetic all the time (manic) or lethargic constantly. A balance must be struck between activity and rest to be healthy. Not everyone needs the same amount of activity and rest. But all must find their way to what personally works best, which is easier said than done.
America is at its heaviest in history, with more than 30 percent of the population not just overweight but obese. Children represent a significant proportion of this epidemic.
Why? Because we are out of balance. We spend too much time watching TV, playing video games and not enough time playing softball or swimming. We spend too many nights eating fast food en route to myriad places we all “must” go and not enough time sitting down as a family to enjoy a healthy, balanced meal together.
There’s also been increased emphasis on academics in our schools and less focus on good, old fashioned physical education. Exercise is often seen as drudgery or something to be endured.
I can relate. Lifting weights to me is a mind-numbing bore, and jogging is worse.
The key to finding balance in our lives is to practice really doing what we are doing. Huh? We must take a deep breath and concentrate on doing one thing at a time.
Before you can understand how martial arts and combat training can help improve your fitness and health, it is important to understand what “fitness” really is. There are two essential aspects to your personal fitness.
The first relates to your physiological well-being. In order for this aspect to be actualized, it is important for individuals to adhere to the right kind of diet, do some form of physical activity regularly, get the right amount of sleep on a consistent basis, and as much as possible, refrain from harmful habits like excessive drinking and smoking. This will ensure that most or all of the systems and parts of your body are functioning at maximum capacity, which helps you avoid painful, costly, and prohibitive medical conditions in the future.
Physical and mental fitness
The second aspect of fitness actually relates to the physical capabilities of your body. This aspect of fitness is also intimately linked with sharpness of mind as well. Apart from being able to use your body to perform difficult and exhausting physical feats, your mind must also be able to assess and evaluate a threat or a life-endangering situation quickly enough for you to take measures to protect yourself. You must be able to endure monotony, even pain sometimes, to push your limits and reach your goals – which requires both physical and mental stamina. Martial arts training is particularly well-suited for self-improvement training for this reason.
An important thing to remember about martial arts training is that it is ultimately geared toward self-defense. Do not begin training with the intention to cause someone else harm; you will instead learn respect. This kind of training is designed so that you are able to properly handle yourself during a confrontation that could potentially threaten your life or those of your loved ones. As such, martial arts training is designed to help you maneuver yourself out of a violent situation in the most practical and quickest way possible.
Martial arts can be beneficial if the practitioner can use them properly in a street fight, but the real key to self-defense is keeping your body and mind healthy. Studies have shown that athletic training in martial arts can do wonders to stave off conditions like osteoporosis, obesity, joint problems, and neuro-muscular problems. The idea behind this alternating high and low impact training is not to grow to the size of a body-builder, but to allow you to control your own body weight in the best possible manner. In doing so, you will be able to build strength, speed, flexibility, and agility to extremely high levels without compromising the physiological balance of hormones and chemicals in your body.
A professionally-taught Karate program can yield better specific and overall results from your personal investment (time, effort, and money) in a supervised physical fitness regimen. Martial Arts schools have been helping adults and children improve the quality of their lives for some time, with tangible, enduring, life-improving outcomes for many students of all ages. Taking classes at a modern training facility is a great way to increase your confidence, make new friends, increase your personal security, and have fun while improving the overall quality of your physical fitness routine.
Maybe you started working out at a conventional gym a couple of years ago. Like many others, you probably got great, motivating results – at first. And perhaps not unlike them, you eventually “reached a plateau” somewhere – seeing fewer returns from your effort and resources. If this sounds familiar, training at a reputable Martial Arts school could be just the thing to get your fitness progress back in gear.
Training in a quality program provides students a well-rounded, comprehensive program for complete fitness. By practicing Martial Arts, you become faster, stronger, leaner, and more flexible while simultaneously reducing stress and increasing your level of cardiovascular fitness. Training in Martial Arts allows you to feel more “in tune” with your body than ever before. Martial Arts are a holistic practice. Along this bodily accord comes a new sense of mental and spiritual calm, paradoxically giving you the capacity for explosive power. Many students find this mental, physical, and spiritual clarity carries over into every aspect of their lives.
Friendly, experienced instructors work with students individually and as groups to achieve their personal fitness goals at your own preferred pace. People are different. A trained instructor will understand that what works for one student may not work as well for another. Fortunately, the Martial Arts provide effective, enjoyable exercise for all fitness levels, goals, and schedules.
If you’re bored lifting weights, spinning, or climbing stairs for hours on end, or feel frustrated by a lack of discernible results, Martial Arts training could be the ideal solution. Martial Arts classes offer students an excellent means of achieving the best physical fitness of their lives while simultaneously providing them with the tools not only to defend themselves, but also to grow as individuals.