Black Belt Martial Arts Never too old for Martial Arts with Liz Mahler
I’ve met a lot of people who when they reach age 40 start saying things like, ‘I’m getting old,’ or ‘I’m over the hill,’ even ‘I’m too old to do karate.’ However, there are more middle-aged people who are defying ageing and beginning to experiencing a second act of life.
Some of these 50plus people are by taking up martial arts. Many of our baby boomer students are parents of teenagers who already train at Black Belt Martial Arts. Some of them have sat and watched classes for years and after finally take the big step onto the mat find themselves being in better shape than they were in their 20s.
While maybe the most obvious benefit of martial arts is that it might help you in a confrontation, the potential improvement to your health is the greatest benefit of your training. At the very least, martial arts will can improve your health and make you feel a great deal better.
A study by the British Journal of Sports Medicine (2004) reported on the benefits of martial arts for the middle-aged population. The study involved both men and women.
The comparison involved studying middleaged martial artists and middle-aged sedentary people.
Flexibility and balance are chronic issues in ageing. So much so that these are accepted as regular signs of ageing. If you can reverse these two things, your middle age and old age will be much healthier and a lot more enjoyable. Martial arts can reverse and therefore slow the process of ageing significantly. The British study showed that the difference in flexibility between the practitioners and the non-practitioners was 114 percent.
Balance becomes extremely important as you age. Thousands of elderly people are injured in falls every year, and as you age the injuries that can result from falls become worse, and even life threatening.
The British Journal of Sports Medicine study specifically showed that the middleaged adults who participated at least twice a week for at least three years were able to perform daily activities vigorously, with capacities showing that they were a very low risk of contracting hypokinetic diseases - obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, low back pain, and type 2 diabetes. A onehour class twice a week can make a huge difference in your susceptibility to these diseases.
And don’t forget the benefits other than physiological. Learning new things exercises the brain; the meditative nature of martial arts training reduces stress and memorising martial arts sequences helps memory in other aspects of life.
So forget your retirement plans of slippers, day time telly and bingo and trade them in for karate pyjamas, belts, cool karate moves, better than ever health and lots of fun.