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How to Incorporate Martial Arts Into Your Fitness Routine

By: Damir Butkovic | Jul 17 2010 | 381 words | 927 hits

Popular wisdom tells us that staying fit becomes harder as we age. But it doesn't have to be! Whether you already have a fitness program that has become stale or you are considering getting in shape now, martial arts may be for you. Here are some considerations for incorporating martial arts into your fitness routine.

Your Physical Condition
Of course, you should always consult with your doctor before beginning any exercise program to make sure you are able to do so safely. Yet, even if you do have some physical limitations, you may still be able to take advantage of the benefits of training.

Types of Arts
There are two main divisions between martial arts disciplines: soft and hard. 'Soft' disciplines refers to practices like tai chi chuan and kung fu. These involve fluid movements and can be more appropriate for those with physical limitations. 'Hard' styles refer to practices like muay thai, karate and capoeira. These are higher impact and feature more powerful arm and leg movements. Any of the styles of martial arts can be a great way to improve fitness.

Check to see what types of training programs are available in your area. Visit the different schools and talk to the instructors to see what they suggest for your particular fitness needs and desires. Be sure to share your health concerns with your instructor so they can teach you how to modify training drills to meet your needs.

A Complete Program
While just going to the gym can help your health, martial arts are a more complete fitness workout. This is because to be able to perform the strikes and other moves, you will strengthen and develop all of your muscle groups. Traditional workouts may only focus on upper body or lower body strength while ignoring the benefits of core strength, flexibility, and balance.

More than Just a Workout
Incorporating martial arts into your fitness routine is another way to reduce stress. Many training programs include meditation, which can also lead to reducing high blood pressure in some cases. Instructors can also help improve your eating habits, because when we rely on junk food, we feel like junk, so a healthy diet creates a healthy body and mind which enables us to perform better.

If fitness is your goal, incorporating martial arts into your routine is a great idea.


About author:
Damir Butkovic is the founder of http://www.martialartsfreetips.com, an online community for people who need advice about mixed martial arts (MMA). For instant access, free exercise tips, strength training advice and guidelines for proper nutrition, go to http://www.martialartsfreetips.com
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