Contrary to their depiction in popular media, martial arts is not gender exclusive. In fact, many martial arts communities are quite welcoming of people from different backgrounds. If you’re a woman who’s keen on picking up self-defense knowledge, you won’t have a hard time finding a group that can help you grow in the discipline of your choosing.
Women can also enjoy plenty of benefits if they decide to learn combat techniques. Aside from being a good way to develop self-discipline, here are more reasons why you should take up martial arts:
Gain a Means to Defend Yourself
Let’s face it: violence against women is a pervasive problem in the Philippines. According to statistics from the Philippine Commission on Women (PCW), 1 in every 4 Filipino women between the ages of 15 and 49 have been on the receiving end of physical, emotional, or sexual violence. Sadly, it will take a lot of time and effort to solve this complex social issue and reduce the cases of violence against women in the country. In the meantime, you can learn how to defend yourself. This will give you a better chance of surviving in case you get into a situation where the use of force becomes necessary.
Of course, it’s ideal to not get into dangerous situations in the first place. On many occasions, it’s also much safer to run away than to confront your aggressors. But when you’re backed into a corner, it’s better that you know how to defend yourself effectively than not at all. Joining a Krav Maga class, for instance, will teach you how to think tactically and help you acquire the necessary techniques to subdue an aggressor. Brazilian jiu jitsu is also an effective form of self-defense, as it focuses on mastering your body and controlling the movement of the opponent. If you’re interested in learning either discipline, there are plenty of gyms that offer jiu jitsu Philippines classes or Krav Maga courses for civilians.
Live a Healthier Lifestyle
Learning self-defense is a great way to ease yourself into exercising regularly and living a healthier lifestyle. Developing personal discipline is an important lesson when learning martial arts, which you can also apply to healthy living. You can put this lesson to practice, first and foremost, by making time and reserving energy for your classes.
Aside from learning discipline and pushing yourself to commit to your classes, picking up martial arts skills can also be quite fun and rewarding. If you enjoy your lessons and feel that you’re achieving something worthwhile by attending them, then there’s a good chance that you’ll keep coming to your classes. This increases your chances of making a habit of exercising and leading a more active lifestyle. Before you know it, you’ll be looking forward to your sessions at the gym instead of dreading them.
Find Stress Relief Through Physical Activities
There are women who find stress relief by resting and relaxing at home, but there are also those who prefer to blow off steam by engaging in physical activity. If you’re the latter, then you’ll feel right at home in a self-defense class where you can train your body and spar with your classmates. If you’re the former, exercising by learning how to defend yourself still remains an excellent idea. Remember that physical activity pumps up your endorphins, which are neurotransmitters that act as natural stress- and pain-relievers. In addition, being physically engaged can distract you from the things that are stressing you out. Considering these, attending a self-defense class can be a healing and relaxing activity, even if you’re the kind of person who usually prefers to stay in bed after a demanding day.
Improve One’s Level of Self-Confidence
Growing stronger, gaining greater control over your body, learning new self-defense techniques, and seeing yourself become better in a particular discipline can boost your self-confidence. It’s encouraging to see yourself level up as you go through the different challenges that come with learning self-defense. This confidence boost can then translate into other aspects of your life. When you’ve grown stronger physically and you have a better idea of how much you can push yourself, you can do more things on your own. Ultimately, when you’ve reaffirmed that you’re capable of immense growth, you can also feel more confident in taking on new challenges at home or in the workplace.
Of course, there’s still a possibility of failure. However, many martial arts disciplines view failure as a learning experience. Once you’ve adopted this perspective, you’ll have an easier time picking yourself up, getting better, and trying again in case you fall short of your goals.
Become a Part of a Community
Martial arts groups are big on developing personal discipline, but they’re also keen on fostering a sense of community among their members. If you join such a group to learn self-defense techniques, you’ll also find people who are focused on improving themselves and supporting others who are going through the same journey. You’ll find plenty of women from different backgrounds and walks of life in these groups, but your shared interest in self-defense will help you find common ground. As you get to know these women better, you’ll be able to foster a strong connection in and out of your self-defense classes.
Now is as good a time as any to start learning martial arts and pick up self-defense skills. If you’re looking for a sign to check out a nearby gym or self-defense class, this is it. Have fun!