In 2009 I went to my local leisure centre to try my first ever martial arts class and was awarded my white belt. Fast forward five years, after a gruelling six-hour test, I received my black belt. Hands down one of the greatest achievements of my life.
The martial art I trained in was freestyle taekwondo, which has a spin on the ITF (International Taekwondo Federation) format. Along the way it boosted my confidence, and I grew as a person while challenging hurdles which led me to achieve the goal of receiving my black belt.
You can discover a vast amount of martial art styles all over the world, and for everyone you learn you will gain physical and mental benefits no matter which one you choose.
What styles are out there?
According to Black Belt Wiki, there are more than 180 different martial art styles around the globe – so it’s fair to say you’re spoilt for choice.
You can go down the traditional route of karate, where they teach you pattern forms otherwise known as “katas”. A kata is a sequence of moves that include blocks, strikes, and kicks. They are designed to teach self-defence and put you in an imaginary fight scene against attackers.
If you want to entertain the fighting route of martial arts, you will go down the route of MMA, kickboxing, taekwondo and Muay Thai just to name a few. Although those four are most known for fighting, they do also teach you self-defence, how to control your emotions, and overcome any fears you may have.
There is also a Chinese martial art known as “tai chi” which is sometimes called “shadowboxing”. Tai chi is typically practiced for defence training, health benefits and meditation. It’s a relaxing martial art which can sometimes ground you after a busy day at work, or if you just need to check back in with yourself mentally to channel your emotions.
Not all martial arts are about fighting your opponent until you knock them out. It comes down to self-defence and being able to hold yourself in a fight if you fall into an unfortunate situation. For me, whichever martial art style you choose, they will always provide you key benefits that will make you change for the better.
Physical benefits you will gain
When I started my martial arts journey aged just nine years old, I never realised how much my physical shape and appearance would change over the years of training.
As I hit my teens, I noticed two physical benefits that gave me a huge confidence boost.
When I received my brown belt, I knew then I was on the final leg of my journey to achieve my black belt. I felt in good shape and was setting small goals that I knew if I achieved them, they would leave me with a buzz and wanting to achieve more.
By hitting goals you’ve set, it puts you in a positive mindset that gives you proof that you can succeed in hurdles at any point in life.
One thing I learnt quite quickly was how important self-defence is.
You never want to imagine yourself in a situation where you have to use any attacking moves you’ve learnt throughout the years of training, but you never know when they might be needed.
Once I had knowledge of even the most basic of moves, it gave me a confidence that if I ever needed to use them then I would.
How your mental state will develop in the right direction
Not only does martial arts give you physical benefits, but it can also boost your mental state.
Improving your confidence
My confidence grew immensely whilst training in freestyle taekwondo, and that’s down to learning effective ways of getting myself out of an extreme confrontational situation, seeing physical improvements, and simply just speaking to people.
Seeing your confidence develop leaves you feeling like you can be in any situation and it not be difficult, and that’s even just meeting with someone new such as a prospective client.
Sense of direction
Martial arts can offer you all sorts of directions to take, such as:
- Becoming an instructor to pass on your knowledge
- Taking yourself to competitions to gain achievements
- Just having the direction of taking 30 minutes during your day to channel your emotions by relaxing with tai chi.
Having a sense of direction can keep you grounded and focused of any challenges that you may face. You know you will have the confidence to take yourself down the right path when you look back at all the goals you have succeeded in achieving.
The emotional benefits
You will gain huge benefit emotionally with learning martial arts, and that’s something I experienced.
I learnt to channel my emotions by implementing tai chi for when I find things stressful or overwhelming, I take myself off and just take deep breaths to help control my stress or anxiety.
When you are meeting with prospective clients who are seeking financial advice for the first time, you may want to channel your emotions. This is so you know you are confident in what you are saying in the discovery meeting, and not letting anxiety get the better of you.
Martial arts can help you in any way you’d like it to but try different ones to discover which will be best suited to you and what you want to achieve.
Get in touch
We might not be able to teach you martial arts, however, if you’d like help on how to market your business to the clients you want to attract, email us at email@example.com or call 0115 8965 300.