Obesity is one of the world’s most significant issues as the numbers continue to rise. Only about 200 million people were classified as obese in 1995, and that number jumped up to 300 million people in 2000 and continues to rise.
Martial arts is one of the tools obese people can use to manage their weight effectively. These combat styles give people regular exercise and an improved view of life. That’s enough to help guide many obese people towards more healthy weights.
Overcoming The Global Obesity Epidemic With Martial Arts
Obesity isn’t an issue that only affects adults. About 18 percent of children worldwide are obese, and that number is also on the rise. Martial art classes can help children and adults alike to maintain healthy weights and to lose excess fat on their bodies.
Some of the reasons why martial arts classes can significantly help to cut down the global obesity epidemic include:
1) Burns More Calories Than Most Activities
Martial arts training gets you working harder than you usually do, yet you’ll have so much fun you won’t realize how hard you’re working. An hour spent training a martial art like Muay Thai, mixed martial arts, or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu can burn up to 1000 calories per hour.
Burning up that many calories when having fun makes it much easier to maintain a healthy weight. The formula for weight loss is simple: consume fewer calories than your body needs daily to force it to tap into your fat reserves. The average person needs about 2000 calories daily, so burning half of that while training martial art gives you more leeway with your diet.
Training martial art also gives a balanced mix of aerobic and anaerobic exercises, forcing your heart and lungs to work harder. As a result, your cardiovascular and physical endurance improves, allowing you to work out with more intensity for longer periods.
2) Doesn’t Get Boring
Conventional exercises like running, swimming, and lifting weights also help to lose weight, but they can get boring over time. After a while, these activities might start to feel like chores as you repeat the same exercises over and over again. You can mix things up by adding new exercises to your routine, but that only goes so far.
Martial arts classes don’t have that problem. You never get bored with your training since you learn new things every class. Most martial arts have countless techniques, so even advanced black belts still have a lot of new things to learn. Instead of dreading your workouts, martial arts classes become the highlight of your day. You’ll find yourself looking forward to each class, knowing you’ll get to learn new things.
3) Gives You A Full Body Workout
Martial arts training gives you a full body workout, so your muscles get the stimulation they need to grow stronger. Muscles require more calories for their maintenance than other tissues, so the more muscles a person has, the higher the rate at which their body consumes calories, making it easier to lose weight.
More toned muscles improve your physical appearance, motivating you to continue working harder. Your clothes fit better on your frame, and you no longer get exhausted when performing everyday tasks like climbing up a flight of stairs.
4) Teaches You Discipline
Discipline is a huge part of martial arts, and becoming more disciplined makes you more likely to reach your weight loss goals. Every martial art student starts as a white belt, and they’re sure to run into some techniques they find too challenging.
With perseverance, many of the techniques that were once too difficult for you will become second nature to you as you progress through the ranks. The discipline you build up with your training will carry over into other aspects of your life, including other fitness activities you might engage in and your diet. Being more disciplined with such things will get you to a healthy weight in no time.
5) You Get A Support System
Martial arts classes are a group activity, so you get to interact with people from all walks of life. Your training partners serve as a support system that helps you power through challenging drills. Some of them will also become part of your social circle outside the dojo. After a while, you might even find yourself looking forward to hanging out with your training partners more than the actual class itself.
Best Martial Arts For Weight Loss
Now that we’ve gone over some of the ways martial arts can help to combat the global obesity epidemic, let us explore some of the most effective martial arts for weight loss:
1) Muay Thai
Also known as the art of eight limbs, Muay Thai is considered by many to be the most effective martial art. It teaches you how to use your fists, elbows, legs, and knees as weapons and how to defend against such attacks.
Learning Muay Thai gives you a full body workout, and it’s one of the martial arts that burn up to 1000 calories per hour spent training. Muay Thai is also extremely fun, so you won’t even realize how hard you’re working at the gym.
You don’t have to spar to get these benefits from Muay Thai. Training regularly and hitting pads or a heavy bag is enough to get you in the best shape of your life.
2) Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is another excellent martial art that helps to lose or maintain a healthy weight. It’s a grappling-based martial art that teaches you how to subdue opponents with ground control, chokes, and joint locks. BJJ also teaches you basic throws.
BJJ can be lots of fun, and you burn up to 1000 calories every hour you spend on the mat.
Boxing is another effective way to burn lots of calories and lose weight. It helps to build your cardiovascular and muscular endurance, and you learn all sorts of effective fighting techniques you can defend yourself with if the need arises.
Give Martial Arts A Try
Looking for a different alternative for your weight loss journey? Why not give martial arts a try! If you are interested in trying out martial arts, consider a complimentary trial class with Evolve!
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