Taking martial arts classes will teach you many crucial life skills that will make you a better person. One of the most important skills you get to sharpen when you step on the mat is your problem-solving skills.
That’s right; learning about a combat style improves your ability to come up with solutions to problems, both old and new. Martial arts training doesn’t just improve your ability to think more critically. It also improves your ability to think clearly under pressure.
Why does learning martial arts improve your problem-solving skills?
It’s all part of the process of learning a martial art. When you start out with a new style, your first couple of weeks will be dedicated to learning new techniques and positions. As your arsenal of moves grows, you will start learning how to combine all the techniques you know together as you look for ways to defeat your sparring partners.
The martial arts experience is unique for everyone. There will be some techniques that just come naturally to you, while others seem impossible to learn at first. Some techniques will prove to be very effective on most people you spar with, while others will be virtually impossible for you to pull off on resisting opponents.
It’s all normal. It’s all part of the training process.
With time, you will start to have a better understanding of which technique is better for each scenario. As your understanding of the most opportune time to go for certain moves improves, you will start learning how to set traps for your opponents so that they end up exactly where you want them to be so that you can execute your moves.
That’s what a martial arts match or sparring session consists off. Two people trying to outthink one another. Competitions are typically categorized based on skill level and weight, so neither opponent should have any significant physical advantage. The person who is better at figuring out his/her opponent’s strength and weaknesses and capitalizing on them is most likely to emerge victorious.
It isn’t uncommon to hear people compare martial arts to logic-sharpening games like chess. Both activities require you to outthink your opponent while making sure you do not do anything that makes you vulnerable. The main difference between the two is the fact martial arts forces you to physically exert yourself while looking for a solution.
It would not be a stretch to say taking martial arts classes regularly is a more effective way of improving your problem-solving skills than frequently playing chess.
That’s because of the additional challenges martial arts imposes on you as you try to figure out the best way to beat a competitor or sparring partner. Martial arts also teach you a few other virtues that improve your ability solve problems.
Let’s explore some of these other benefits and how they improve your problem-solving skills.
1) Teaches perseverance
Training a combat style is all about pushing forward during tough times. Nothing comes without effort. You are not going to find all the techniques and drills you perform during class easy the first time you are taught these moves. It is up to you to keep trying until what was once difficult becomes easy.
Fortunately, martial arts have lots of minor milestones, so it is easy to judge your progression as you spend more time on the mat. Each minor goal accomplished will serve as a reminder that you can master anything you dedicate yourself to learning.
That never-quit attitude will come in handy when you find yourself staring at a difficult problem that many others have already given up on.
2) Reduces stress
Martial arts classes are an excellent way to take your mind of the things that stress you out the most for a few hours a day. The world has a way of disappearing when you are on the mat with like-minded people, having a good time and learning new things.
Training a combat style also provides you with solid cardiovascular exercise. This causes your body to release endorphins like dopamine – which gives you a “feel good” sensation. That means you leave every class feeling a lot better than you did when you walked in.
Your ability to think clearly is greatly improved when you aren’t stressed out.
3) Teaches respect
If there is one thing all martial arts have in common, it is certainly their strong belief that respecting those around you is a must. Nothing will get you kicked out of a dojo faster than being a disrespectful person.
As you spend more time training martial arts, you will gain an appreciation for how much smoother things are when we all respect one another.
When you respect those around you, you are more likely to listen to what they are saying, instead of hearing what you want to hear. It is impossible to come up with a solution to a problem if you don’t have a good understanding of what the problem is in the first place.
“If I had an hour to solve a problem I’d spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.” ― Albert Einstein
From the above, it is rather clear that signing up for martial arts classes will do wonders for your problem-solving skills. The ability to come up with viable solutions to problems that will surely come up as you navigate your way through life is priceless. The benefits listed above are not the only things you gain when you sign up for martial arts classes though. Other benefits include:
- Burning more fat
- Learning self-defense
- Meeting new people
- Improved flexibility
- Better rest
- More energy
It is easy to understand why an increasing number of people are signing up for martial arts classes once you become aware of the many rewards. These are benefits you start enjoying the day your training starts. Start your martial arts journey by booking a trial class today!
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