Mind Over Matter – 4 Ways Martial Arts Equips You For Life
When people think about the martial arts, they tend to think of the training in terms of pure physicality, but the truth is that a martial artist’s most effective tool is not his or her fists, feet or knees, but rather the mind.
Yes, the body performs the techniques and absorbs the punishment, but it is guided and fortified by the will of the practitioner. A strong will is forged in the fires of martial arts training, and the mental benefits can be seen in every area of your life.
“How?” you might ask, well…
You Will Develop Greater Discipline
The martial arts’ focus on discipline is no secret, and the best training centres and dojos instil in their students a sense of honour, an ethical code of conduct and a deep and abiding sense of respect for the teacher. To master the training itself, a student’s mind must be focused on the task at hand and free of distraction.
The importance of discipline is emphasised for good reason.
An individual without any discipline whatsoever is going to go through life struggling to set or achieve goals. They can drift without direction and will often be a passive force in the world – being acted upon, rather than exercising their autonomy.
Without a productive sense of discipline, tasks will go unfinished and dreams will remain unpursued and unrealised.
The martial arts not only teach discipline, but they provide concrete rewards for its application in the form of improved skills and ability, teaching the practitioner that mastery comes with time, and that patient dedication pays off.
Build A Habit Of Goal-Setting
The systems of grading followed by almost all martial arts acclimate students to the concept of self-improvement through measurable steps. The fluidity of your movements, the precision of your techniques, and the level of competitor with whom you can go toe-to-toe, are all factors that one takes into account when determining one’s own advancement through the martial arts ranks.
Goal-setting is an important ability that will pay off throughout your life.
Too often, the motivation for making goals comes from an external source – such as your parents, teachers or employer. In martial arts training, your coach serves to develop your habit of goal-setting so that the motivation is internalised. This is especially important for children, whose adaptable minds are far more open to new ideas and habit-building than us old fogies are, but there is no one that cannot benefit from developing strong and decisive ability to identify objectives.
Become Comfortable With Confrontation
Even if you are naturally non-confrontational, there will be times when life doesn’t give you a choice and confrontation finds you. When it does, you’ll be caught flat-footed if you are not accustomed to, and comfortable with confrontation.
Whether you’re dealing with bullies, crime, abrasive colleagues or any number of other unpleasant realities, the fact is that conflict is everywhere, and there are time when it is not only hard to avoid, but a bad idea.
It isn’t about wanting to fight, or stir up trouble, it’s about knowing that you can handle trouble if it finds you. And you might be surprised at how often trouble avoids you, if you don’t back down from it.
Through competence, confidence is encouraged, and a student of the martial arts whose mind has been focused by discipline and whose skills have been sharpened through training, is able to navigate confrontation with a steady head.
Face And Overcome Your Limits
There is nothing more empowering than discovering your limits and then finding that you can push beyond them, expanding your horizons by redefining your limitations.
Martial arts offers students the opportunity to do just that!
Whether perfecting the sorts of spinning kicks and flashy techniques that they’ve seen in action movies, or turning themselves into confident and bully-proof dynamos, martial arts allow practitioners to do things that they would otherwise not have believed their bodies could manage.
Every time you break your own barriers and achieve what you thought was impossible, you just prove to yourself that nothing is impossible.
There is no replacement for building the kind of confidence, and the mindset it develops will positively change the way you approach the challenges you face in every other area of your life.
Do you want to experience the life-spanning benefits of training with world class martial arts instructors? Contact the SMA Centre today and find out more about our classes, hosted by national and regional martial arts champions.