If you’re looking to get in shape and want to also develop good self-defense skills, then you should consider taking a martial arts or boxing class. These classes are an amazing way to get into shape, and they will give you the skills to fight off an attacker. It can be confusing to pick a class if you don’t know anything about the different fighting styles, so the information below will fill you in on what exactly they entail.
Kickboxing is a mix between classic boxing, Muay Thai, and karate. The combination of the three different fighting skills created a very unique style that is perfect for self-defense. You will learn the basics of boxing technique; this includes how to properly throw a punch. From Muay Thai you will learn how to use your knees as a weapon and also how to throw elbow strikes. Finally, will learn you the basics of karate kicks.
Kickboxing provides an intensive cardio workout. You will spend a lot of time kicking bags, as well as working with pads. Beginners should choose a class that is designed for novices, since this will usually exclude full-contact sparing. Talk with a professional, like Olson’s Martial Arts Academy, for more information.
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ)
This form of Jiu Jitsu was developed in Brazil, hence the name. It is slightly different than Japanese Jiu Jitsu in that it involves more ground work. It is a fighting skill that is based around submissions. Rather than hit or kick your attacker, you will attempt to make them submit via a choke, leg lock, arm lock, or small joint (finger) manipulation. It is now one of the most dominant fighting skills in the world. If you watch MMA, you will notice that many of the fighters utilize Brazilian Jiu Jitsu skills.
If you’re a small man or woman, this might be a perfect skill to learn. You will learn how to immobilize larger attackers using join locks and arm manipulation. You don’t need to be able to hit or kick with any strength. Instead, you will learn how to leverage your body and the body of your opponent (attacker) and use it to immobilize them.
BJJ provides an exhausting workout. You will spend the class tumbling on mats and practicing throws. There are no punches or kicks, so it’s relatively low contact for beginners.
If you’re not interested in getting down on the ground and grappling and don’t fancy the idea of learning kicking techniques, then boxing is for you. Classic boxing technique will help you learn how to properly throw a punch. Proper punching technique is not a simple thing that you can learn by shadow boxing in your living room. It requires an instructor and practice. However, once you learn how to throw a punch (or better yet, a combination of punches) you will be much better off should a dangerous situation arise.
Boxing class is going to be very cardio intensive. The basics involve medicine ball work, jump rope, speed bag work, and heavy bag work. All of these things are excellent for fat burning.