Muay Thai as a Mental Training tool…
The importance of Muay Thai as a mental training tool. Exercise has multiple different meanings and can go beyond a simple hour of movement. Developing a symbiotic relationship can reshape your entire workout and give you better results.
When exercise becomes a means of reshaping your body, rather than getting healthier, it reduces physical activity to a chore making you feel discouraged and dissatisfied. Contrary to society’s beliefs, exercise shouldn’t be a drudgery. There are many forms of physical activities that you can pick up very easily. Finding an activity that is mentally stimulating as well is just as important and will help keep you motivated.
Mauy Thai has quickly become a tool in my life that I use to encourage my mental and physical health to work together side by side.
Being in tune with your body
Physical activity in general is a tool to help us become more in tune with our bodies, which can be one of the most encouraging aspects about it. Mauy Thai isn’t just about improving your outward physical appearance. In fact, one of my first weeks in training, my coach told me that I would learn all of the moves in a matter of weeks but over the course of a few years I would become more aware. I didn’t know what this meant at first but over the course of my first few months I felt calmer during my day to day life. This allowed to stand my ground mentally and maintain physical balance.
Health has a stigma wrapped around it that it is purely physical when in actuality it does number of amazing things for your mental health. Exercising not only balances the chemicals out in your brain but it also reduces immune system chemicals that can worsen depression. It can be used as a tool for physical improvement and when practiced with a positive mindset can be used to fight depression and other debilitating mental illness’s that can stand in the way such as anxiety.
For a long time this was a chore to me, I became bored very easily and over time became sluggish and could never find a way to encourage myself to move in a way outside of my depression. But, Muay Thai moves quickly. Doing Muay Thai combinations and working with people in encouraging ways has taught me a number of things about myself. Nothing can be more intimidating for me as a woman than a gym full of strong people but I quickly found my sense of strength and was able to learn how to breathe in way that keeps me at bay.
Fighting anxiety requires a lot of self discipline. With Muay Thai I had to establish that goals and limits always go hand in hand. Setting goals is always important but do not need to be more than my body’s limits. I had to tune into both of these aspects with fighting arts. May Thai shows a high amount of self-control so finding out that limits are just as important as goals are. Setting a strong pace for yourself and knowing how far you can push your body gives your movement meaning and helps your body mentally and physically. By understanding it’s importance through respect for one another.
One vigorous exercise session can help alleviate symptoms of anxiety for hours. A regular schedule may significantly reduce them continuously over time. Muay Thai has taught me that I can tune in mentally to work harder physically. That being said you are allowed to make concessions for your own well being, in the end, that’s what this is all about!
Guilt and exercise have a well established relationship but, it is not a healthy one.
Separating the two and taking the guilt out of exercise can help train yourself to work out of love for your body and not punishment. Sometimes there are circumstances or personal priorities that don’t allow for typical exercise, and that’s okay!
Allowing yourself the space to not feel defeated by physical activity can help develop a relationship that has room to grow without feeling trapped and can help you fight with a purpose.
By: Faithfull Plakovic