MA for Physical Fitness Only

Lynne

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At our school, there are a few people who have joined primarily for physical fitness. Our school is a dedicated martial arts school. It is required for us to compete at least once a year and more so at red belt. As you all know, the challenge in martial arts isn't only physical. There is a great deal of mental challenge, too.

Do you think those who join a school only for the physical benefits stay with the art? If so, is it because they have a shift in attitude? Why would anyone endure the mental challenge if they only want to become physically fit? In fact, there are "easier" ways to become physically fit.

What has been your experience with classmates/students?
 

terryl965

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In all my years I have only had a handful stay when they walked in for Physical fitness. There mindset is just for the short term not long term.
 

Touch Of Death

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At our school, there are a few people who have joined primarily for physical fitness. Our school is a dedicated martial arts school. It is required for us to compete at least once a year and more so at red belt. As you all know, the challenge in martial arts isn't only physical. There is a great deal of mental challenge, too.

Do you think those who join a school only for the physical benefits stay with the art? If so, is it because they have a shift in attitude? Why would anyone endure the mental challenge if they only want to become physically fit? In fact, there are "easier" ways to become physically fit.

What has been your experience with classmates/students?
Mental, physical, spiritual, emotional, and perceptual fitnesses are all inter realated. To raise or lower one is to raise or lower the others. In a way they are there fore the mental and just see it as a physical journey.
Sean
 
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Lynne

Lynne

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In all my years I have only had a handful stay when they walked in for Physical fitness. There mindset is just for the short term not long term.
That's what I thought. We have had a few join and then drop out after a short time. Too bad, because some of them were physically talented. But I guess that has nothing to do with MA ;)
 

terryl965

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That's what I thought. We have had a few join and then drop out after a short time. Too bad, because some of them were physically talented. But I guess that has nothing to do with MA ;)

Yea it is just that mind set, I am here to get in shape and then bam gone.
 

JadecloudAlchemist

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Martial arts to stay in shape is not the best method.

If you want to spend money just to stay in shape join a Gym.

If you want something that will test your limits both mental,physical,build self defense skills among other things then joining Martial arts is ideal.
 

Josh Oakley

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One thing I tell students who walk in is that yes, they will get in shape, but they will get more than just that. Not all stay once they're in shape, but most do, because it really is about so much more than mere physical fitness.
 

terryl965

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One thing I tell students who walk in is that yes, they will get in shape, but they will get more than just that. Not all stay once they're in shape, but most do, because it really is about so much more than mere physical fitness.


This is so true.
 

Andy Moynihan

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There are a lot of easier ways to get in the same kind of shape if that's all they're after.

You can join a gym and get in "shape."

You can find any floor or, hell, any flat patch of ground on the planet and do calisthenics for free and get in "shape".

The other things that a martial art will give, like a sense of purpose, techniques for best efficient use of strength for self defense purposes, camaraderie with others who share the interest in MA( because let's face it, so few people understand who aren't "of the blood" so to speak) can only be gotten by the people who came WANTING them to start with.
 

Rich Parsons

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In all my years I have only had a handful stay when they walked in for Physical fitness. There mindset is just for the short term not long term.

I agree from my experience as well.
 

KenpoGirl75

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From my own experience, I must confess that yes, I did begin in martial arts as a way to get in shape, and hopefully lose weight. I had always been fascinated with the martial arts, so I figured I'd give it a try. What I found was that I quickly fell in love with my Kenpo training and realized that I had better get in shape for that! So I joined a gym, and started going to the cardio kickboxing class at the dojo. A little over a year later, I still go to both my martial arts class and the gym.

And I agree, if only doing martial arts purely for fitness only, people won't stay, I know I would not have.
 

Deaf Smith

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I hate to tell you guys, self defense and physical fitness are the only reasons I'm in the martial arts.

My Church takes care of my spirital needs.

Deaf
 

Rich Parsons

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I hate to tell you guys, self defense and physical fitness are the only reasons I'm in the martial arts.

My Church takes care of my spirital needs.

Deaf

My Martial Art does nothing for my spiritual needs. I would not expect it too either.

But the questions was Physical Fitness only. And when people are there for only that reason more do not stay then those who do stay.

For self defense much more stay, but they usually find a passion for the art.
 

jks9199

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In my experience, people who look to martial arts as simply another fun way to keep in shape move onto another fad after a few months or a year or two. They may wander back now and then... but that's as far as it goes. And that's as far as they want it to. Incidentally, this applies to lots of other things than martial arts. People who take up mountain biking or weight training or whatever solely for the fitness aspect tend to move onto something else. But if they get something more than the bare athletic aspect out of the activity -- they stay with it.

I'm not suggesting that you must get spiritual fulfillment from martial arts (or anything else); like a few others, I get my spiritual fulfillment from my religion -- not my martial arts. But I still get other sorts of fulfillment than spiritual. I thrive on the challenge of teaching, now, for example, and I've gotten lots of fulfillment over the years from competition or the success in learning a challenging form or technique. Just like I enjoy the time in the woods on the mountain bike, and the challenge of cleaning a difficult obstacle... (or practicing my breakfalls when I don't clean it!)
 

crushing

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I started MA primarily for physical fitness. Over the years it has become so much more. I'm not sure what caused my shift. I think it had a lot to do with the great people I've met and trained with, not to mention the great community here on MT.

Our school is a dedicated martial arts school. It is required for us to compete at least once a year and more so at red belt.

I'm sure there are many dedicated martial arts schools that do not have a competition requirement. I'm not in it for sport, so I'm glad I don't have any competition requirements.
 

Makalakumu

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This comment is primarily for people who train in Itosu lineage martial arts. Some forms of Okinawan karate fit the bill, most styles of Japanese Karate fit this bill, and all versions of Korean Karate fit this bill.

Itosu Sensei intended to create a physical education program using the principles and some of the methods of Okinawan Te. According to his own writing, every technique was meant to teach self defense, principle, and physical fitness.

So, if you are training in an Itosu lineage art in order to improve your physical fitness, then you are doing what was intended. You also are learning self defense and fighting principles, if you know what to look for. IMHO, most people who train in Karate-based systems are primarily focusing on physical fitness. This has more to do with official curriculum then instructor.
 

Cirdan

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While MA certainly have health benefits, almost all arts dedicate around 90% of a typical class to technique with low to medium intensity. Those who only want to get in shape quit within a few weeks, there are far better places for them to train.
 

KP.

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There are people who simply won't put in the time and effort to get in shape merely for the sake of being in shape. They need a reason to go to the gym that extends beyond going to the gym.

For such people, being engaged in a competitive activity is a great motivator to engage in various forms of exercise to get in shape.

I know more than a few folks who hate going to the gym, but do so religiously because they want to put in the extra work to succeed at their competitive endeavor.

Now, would you say that someone with that mindset joined a martial art for the sake of getting in shape? I think so. One major component of getting in shape is to find the motivation to keep going.
 
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Lynne

Lynne

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I started MA primarily for physical fitness. Over the years it has become so much more. I'm not sure what caused my shift. I think it had a lot to do with the great people I've met and trained with, not to mention the great community here on MT.



I'm sure there are many dedicated martial arts schools that do not have a competition requirement. I'm not in it for sport, so I'm glad I don't have any competition requirements.
I would be very happy not competing.
 
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Lynne

Lynne

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While MA certainly have health benefits, almost all arts dedicate around 90% of a typical class to technique with low to medium intensity. Those who only want to get in shape quit within a few weeks, there are far better places for them to train.
Our classes can be rough. Sometimes people get sick or have to sit out. They are not always rough enough to make people sick unless they aren't in shape. We'll do a bunch of squat thrusts and then work on forms. Then we'll take a break from forms and do 100 crunches. Actually, look forward to the crunches because they are a break, a chance to get my heart rate down a little bit.
 
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