Karate and Health
by Alan Pope - 13:29 on 17 February 2020
Karate has many health benefits both mentally and physically. An active karate class will activate your cardiovascular system to work hard. This has the benefit of strengthening your heart and blood vessels, improving your speed and stamina and protecting you from coronary heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. In addition, your muscles will work hard to keep you moving, burning off the extra calories you don't need and helping you to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. This also has the result of having well-toned and strong muscles. The dynamic nature of karate improves your core strength, improving your balance, posture, flexibility and reducing your risk of injury.
Of equal importance is the mental health benefits of karate. Firstly, you have the opportunity to get out and about with like-minded people, sharing a common goal and belonging to a specific community. Secondly, the physical exercise releases your own bodies natural endorphins which help to make you feel good and improves personal positivity. You will also sleep better at night too. Thirdly, karate helps to improve your mind through goal setting, achieving measurable and realistic targets and by gaining confidence in yourself and others.
Karate can also help expand your horizons. Karate is a bit like the onion Shrek refers to in the film of the same name. It has many layers. The deeper you go the more you can learn about karate culture, philosophy, history and tradition. Through karate I belong to small local communities, but I also share karate with students around the world.