Research into the physical and mental health benefits of martial arts training has shown that the sport can help boost overall morale and fitness.
Sports such as MMA and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) are proven to boost brain cognition, improving alertness and attention, with a recent US study highlighting the increase in emotional well-being that comes with taking part in martial arts training.
With MMA and BJJ hitting the headlines over the last few years thanks to high-profile fights and recent public displays of aggression from figureheads such as Colin McGregor, it’s no surprise that the sport has gained a reputation for being uncontrolled. However, Manchester fightwear company, Fighters Market, is working to show that training in this discipline actually helps teach self-control and respect, both in and out of the ring.
A 2018 Bangor University Study led by Ashleigh Johnstone, looked at the correlation between martial arts training and long-term attention and alertness levels. The study found that those taking part in martial arts training showed better alertness in tasks compared to a group of non-martial artists. The study also highlighted that those who have trained in the discipline for a long time performed the best, suggesting that the effects of improved attention through martial arts training are long-lasting.
Mark Lindars is a BJJ purple belt and has trained in the sport for seven years alongside working in business development at Fighters Market EU, who are promoting the impact of jiu-jitsu on overall health, “Physical benefits are obvious, keeping active in a sport where your cardio is pushed to the limit daily means you are always in good condition. Training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) is also good for anyone's mental health, the worries of the day disappear when someone is trying to submit you on the mats and it's a good escape from the daily grind. 1 or 2 hours on the mats is all it takes to clear your head and get a great nights sleep”
MMA as a form of attention state training (AST) has highlighted that there is a clear link between the practice and improved physical and mental alertness. AST is used to guide an individual towards a specific state of mind that encourages improved focus and self-control.
Mark spoke of the mental health benefits he had encountered through practising martial arts; Mental health isn't exactly an openly discussed topic in BJJ but the positive effects of training and meeting new people who share similar interests will definitely help out with mental health issues such as depression. I have met some of my best friends through jiu-jitsu. If aggression is an issue for somebody, BJJ will help as it teaches you to let go of any ego, especially when a smaller, weaker opponent has the ability to pin you. The only way to get better is to keep showing up and learn the technique, it's a mental battle to go to class over and over even if you don't see any of the "winning" aspects for months!
Fighter Market EU
Contact: 0161 8480414
Fighters Market Europe
Unit 28 Westbrook Park
Manchester, M17 1AY
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