Through the course of time, numerous disciplines (even historic ones) have been used to improve physical ability, increase energy, and enhance overall health and well-being. But among all practices, there has to be one that stands out in terms of bringing out a person’s optimal performance and physical fitness.
While most people would contest that working out at the gym is the best way to get fit, karate enthusiasts would say that their discipline is the ultimate when it comes to physical activity. Not only does karate contribute to strength gains, but it also provides mental exercise and a focused state of mind. If you’re still on the fence about whether or not to take up karate, maybe this list will give you a little insight to throw your apprehensions away.
Body and Mind
Going to the gym does keep you fit, but only if you make the effort to go and get into a challenging routine. A gym membership can’t make you fit if you don’t attend and work for it! At the same time, just as you should pay attention to your own physical fitness, it’s important to nourish your mind. Karate goes the extra mile by incorporating focus and concentration into its list of skills. There has to be a keen coordination between the mind and the body to achieve the right motions, instead of just mindlessly lifting weights and moving according to routine.
Karate makes use of a belt system, so that means as you improve your skills, you unlock achievements in the form of a belt. The higher up the ranks you go, the closer you get to achieving a black belt and becoming a karate master. While going to the gym does reap rewards, they’re not quite as measurable as that of karate. There are no belts, medals, or ribbons to be won when you make improvements in the gym – only your physical appearance becomes your basis. But individuals who engage in karate have something to look forward to, and ultimately that goal propels them to unimaginable personal heights.
While working out at the gym will improve your strength, it doesn’t follow that you’ll get better at defending yourself when the need arises. Being strong and being smart are two completely different things. There is no guarantee that being strong alone can help you face a dangerous situation, especially when you’re caught off guard. Karate, because it incorporates the mind, allows people to see signs, gestures, and cues before most others so they are generally more prepared for self-defence. By understanding the way the human body moves and the specific key points that would temporarily impair an assailant, people who practice karate are at a better position to avoid potential dangers.
Effective Stress Relief
Because karate incorporates meditation and thought into its discipline, it offers students a method to clear their minds and release stress and tension – minus having to become violent. While people who go to the gym resort to immature defence mechanisms, such as imagining the face of their boss on a punching bag, karate teaches people how to control emotions without having to resort to imagining hurting others.
Whole Body Workout
While working out at the gym, you can’t make use of your whole body on just one machine. That’s why gym-goers often divide their week – leg day, chest, arms, back, core. That’s a lot to accomplish in one week! Karate on the other hand makes use of the entire body instead of just segments, so you don’t have to worry about whether or not you’re working out your torso as much as you’re working your legs or arms.
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