A martial arts practice has many health benefits for your body and your mind. With every class you attend, you are building habits that can improve your overall health.
By focusing your physical and mental attention on a single activity, martial arts, your training becomes like a moving meditation. Other activities, such as reading, create this connection as well. However, the mindfulness boost is more significant in activities where the body is more physically involved.
The mind-body connection increases mindfulness. As you become more mindful, you experience less stress. And when you experience less stress, your overall health improves.
Here are a few ways that martial arts promotes mindfulness:
One of the basic ways to create a strong connection between your body and mind is through breathing. Taking deep breaths where you’re focusing on the inhale and exhale can create calm, reduce your heart rate, and improve performance. Shifting your focus to your breathing directs your attention away from the stress of the day. One hundred percent of your attention is on your martial arts class and what’s happening in the present moment.
2. Awareness of Thoughts.
It’s impossible to stop negative thoughts, but it is possible to reframe them. The first step in managing negative thoughts is to become aware of them. This awareness develops along with a strong mind-body connection. If you practice awareness of your thoughts (either positive or negative) while training, you’re also increasing mindfulness.
3. Individual Focus.
Comparing yourself to other students in your class makes it tough to maintain a mind-body connection. Rather than paying attention to others, focus on yourself. Practice noticing when you’re no longer focused on yourself and bring your attention back to your training. Letting go of how much the other students are progressing in favor of your own improvement promotes mindfulness.
If you’re interested in learning more about the different martial arts and fitness programs that we’re currently offering at Systems Training Center, contact us today.