As an adult, you may feel that childhood is the most pleasant, stress-free phase of life. However, look at it from your child’s perspective and things may look a little different. Kids these days feel stressed due to a lot of factors – exam fear, peer pressure, bullying are just some of them. However, did you know that martial arts can also help your kids manage their stress, apart from making them proficient in self defense techniques?

Martial arts for stress management

One of the first things that children are taught in self defense classes is to stay calm. They are advised to handle stressful situations calmly, whereas normally people are likely to panic or freeze when they are stressed, which does not help much. Many martial art techniques like taekwondo focus on breathing and meditation techniques, which further help kids in dealing with stressful situations with a clear mind. Over time, with martial arts training, your child will learn to control his/her anger, and stay level-headed at all times. It will give him/her the ability to handle even stressful situations calmly, thereby reducing stress.

Letting go stress by facing your inner fears

Most kinds of martial arts involve making the trainee face his/her fears and achieve control over them. The fear is mostly portrayed in the form of a strong opponent during the training, which is likely to invoke fear and panic. By facing such situations repeatedly, your kid will learn how to handle the situation better. It will free him/her from all the panic and anxiety that is associated with such situations. Regular physical exercise (which is among the basics of martial arts) has also been said to aid stress reduction.

Martial arts for kids is an effective stress-buster as it improves their mental strength and teaches them to face stressful situations calmly. It focuses on creating inner peace, which is essential for reducing stress.

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Exercise is an important part of staying healthy. However, there are different kinds of exercises and doing all of them is the best way to gain maximum benefit. Generally, there are 4 categories of exercise that a karate school will focus on.

These include:

  1. Strength
  2. Balance
  3. Flexibility
  4. Endurance

Unfortunately, a lot of people, especially men, tend to focus on only strength, balance, and flexibility training, while leaving out endurance exercises.

Endurance training in Karate involves raising the body’s heart and respiration rate. This helps in boosting overall fitness and also improves the health of organs such as the heart and lungs. The general misconception is that, endurance training doesn’t build strength. This is untrue, as there are plenty of endurance training exercises that can also contribute to building strength. Endurance training also reduces chances of lifestyle diseases and makes it easier to carry out day-to-day tasks.

How to start endurance training

There are many ways to start with endurance training. Indulging in activities such as swimming, biking, dancing or playing sports such as soccer, basketball and tennis can be a good way to begin. However, if you are a completely new to exercise in general, a good way to begin your endurance training would be through walking. Karate has a uniqueness to its training, its free of boredom and is always challenging thereby not appearing to be the typical gym workout.

Walking is a simple activity and can help you build up endurance gradually and steadily. Ideally, a ten minute walk in the initial stages would suffice. The key is to increase the duration slowly. At a minimum, health experts advice- that 2.5 hours of medium intensity endurance training per week is a good way to go.

The ability to do intensive endurance training may vary from person to person, but the secret lies in doing your best and never quitting. Once a particular level of endurance training has been achieved, move up the ladder and try to include more complex and challenging training methods. By visiting your local Karate school you can learn more about how they can assist you with your goals.

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