The number of physical health benefits that a mixed martial arts practice can offer are all over the internet. MMA helps general fitness, strength, agility, balance and promotes solid neuromuscular connects it also builds resilience and shreds up that excess fat. Our MMA programs are carefully designed to apply the latest in sports science and include the best from martial arts cultures throughout the world. Maximising the overall bevy of benefits that these systems can provide.
Traditionally, not much is spoken about the mental benefits which accompany this practice, but recent research credits MMA with many benefits of mental prowess, attention spans, neuroplasticity and mental clarity. These benefits seem to vary dependent on the duration of practice, how early one begins their practice and of course how hard one trains.
MMA is a great channel to hone emotional responses and skills, through trial and error in the ring and during training. The deep connection of one’s mind to the corresponding physical response allows the individual to reach a new state of mental awareness. This specialised awareness becomes a gateway to the crevices of the mind, making new and re-establishing older productive connections, allowing yourself to create a new and refreshing mental state.
The daily stressors and anxious situations of modern life act as triggers to many underlying mental health issues and disorders. Depression, anxiety, Schizophrenia, ADHD to name a few. The foundation of these problems may be based in mutated genes and environmental factors, but most MMA fighters also learn to cope and use MMA as an outlet, catharsis from the pressures of adverse life situations.
Martial arts have for many centuries known to contribute to the cultivation of the mind along with positive learning experiences, enhancing self-regulation, introspection and willpower. The high motivation to fight, in all the right ways, playing by the rules along with the undying desire to win, keeps you going, be it within the ring or if you are battling mental illness, with MMA the field is levelled, the battle is levelled and with every punch you throw, every grapple and every tackle, the voice of the monsters within grows duller and duller. The triumph over your opponent and progress is a metaphor of inner triumph and a big win.
Studies show the striking similarities between the working of a psychoanalyst and that of a martial artist. Indicative characteristics of both persons point to interesting similarities and personality traits. Suggestions and learning during training or during therapy both seem to indicate concepts like the ‘no mind’ or increased focus on ‘adaptability to new situations’ amidst others. Similarities found in MMA training principles, psychiatry and psychotherapy point at the benefits that MMA can offer for ones mental health.
1) Martial Arts and Mental Health – Iulius-Cezar Macarie and Ron Roberts
2) Grappling with the emotional world of MMA -Conor Clinch
3)Rousey’s suicidal thoughts and mental health in MMA – Sarah Kurchak
4) MMA and Mental Health – Dorothy Willis
5) The physical and mental health benefits of MMA training