It isn’t easy to quantify progress in martial arts. Unlike going to the gym, where you can count the number of pull-ups or measure the weights, you’re lifting, gauging progress in combat sports isn’t straightforward. Often, uncertainty over your growth leads to reduced motivation.
Additionally, martial arts can be repetitive. Doing the same things over and over can challenge your consistency and hurt your progress.
If you want to know how to progress in martial arts, use the following tips.
Without focus and determination, you cannot become proficient at martial arts, even if you attend training for years. Unfortunately, some people mistakenly believe they can take shortcuts to master different expert-level techniques. On the contrary, you must dedicate thousands of hours to training to become an expert. Bruce Lee used to train for several hours daily before achieving his legendary status, so don’t think a few weekly sessions are enough to make you a pro.
Martial arts training takes a toll on your body and requires a lot of energy to accomplish. For this reason, you need to eat healthy foods.
Before a training session, eating high amounts of carbs is advisable to provide the energy needed for intense physical activity. During the session, ensure you drink lots of water to stay hydrated and restore the water lost through sweating. After training, eat protein-rich food to promote the repair of worn-out tissues and muscle building.
Try to avoid eating processed food rich in fats and sugars as these contribute to unhealthy weight gain, causing you to tire quickly when training.
Set Realistic Milestones
One secret to martial arts progress is setting realistic goals; being practical means not expecting instant results. Many people quit halfway because of having unattainable goals that prompt a loss of motivation. Conversely, having attainable objectives guarantees consistency and progression.
For instance, you can challenge yourself to learn a particular kick. Since this is manageable, you can practice until you master it. Now, think of another trainee who sets a target of knowing several striking techniques. Unfortunately, they are more likely to quit because there will be too much to learn in a limited time.
Train at Home
Many beginners make the mistake of stopping their training at the dojo. Unfortunately, you limit your potential when you exclusively train in your instructor’s presence.
Training at home has several benefits. First, it builds consistency, which cultivates the progression path. Secondly, it burns more calories. This allows you to get in shape quicker and improves your endurance and physical strength.
Contrary to widespread belief, training at home is easy. You only need basic equipment and a reliable internet connection. YouTube has many free videos you can use to improve your skills. Alternatively, you can purchase an online course. However, paid courses aren’t suitable for beginners because you can learn the basics.
Besides self-defense, martial arts training teaches valuable life skills like teamwork and leadership. It also improves physical and mental health.
Consistency, focus, and determination are the keys to martial arts progress. But, more importantly, have realistic expectations.