Martial arts training requires physical endurance to ensure that you have the proper form, balance, movement, and execute the techniques correctly even after several minutes of arduous sparring or fighting.
This is why many people decide to quit when the training doesn’t fit their preconceived idea of what martial arts should be like. Apart from finding a suitable style that you will enjoy practicing, and putting in hours of hard work, there is one more secret to becoming a great martial artist, and that is effective recovery.
Though serious combat systems benefit your entire body and mind, you need to let the body heal and adapt if you want to regain your energy and avoid getting burned out or seriously injured. However, this requires a lot of self-discipline.
Meaning that you need to make healthy choices and avoid the emotional roller-coaster of constantly stressing over the little things, as well as things like substance abuse, inadequate calorie and protein intake, lack of sleep, and training at an incredibly high intensity all the time.
However, there are a few smart and effective recovery techniques you can implement in your after-training routine to ensure that both your mind and body are fully recharged before your next training session. So, sit back and let our experienced Sydney martial arts instructors teach you how to take care of your body.
Rest & Recharge
After hard workouts, it is best to take some time to rest and let your body heal up. Though, there is one more beneficial trick to support the recovery process – recovery training. It may seem silly to exercise for recovery after training, yet a light exercise session can stimulate blood flow to the muscles that can help reduce muscle soreness.
Swimming, jogging, walking, hiking, yoga, and cycling are considered to be some of the best active recovery workouts. Nevertheless, don’t forget to sleep for at least 7-8 hours every night, as there is nothing more ineffective and dangerous than not allowing your body to fully recover.
Pre & Post-Workout Nutrition
According to our Sydney martial art instructors, maintaining good energy levels during training depends mostly on your pre-workout nutrition.
To be able to keep up with tough workouts, be sure to eat some fruit or to prepare a meal rich in carbs and protein to give your body the fuel it needs to push through and recover from a training session. Protein shakes are an excellent substitute, especially if the training is early in the morning.
Here is a list of high-protein food:
- Lean meat
- Dairy products
- Green Vegetables
- Coconut Oil
Always Stay Hydrated
This is rule number one that must be obeyed. Drinking plenty of water helps prevent dehydration, which is the main reason for increased muscle soreness and cramps. In addition, the water helps clear the body of toxins and ensures optimal performance.
Warm Up Before Training and Stretch After
Many people forget all about the importance of dynamic stretching and warming up, and spend a couple of quick minutes swinging their arms and legs around before putting their gloves on and hitting the heavy bag. They also hardly ever get around to doing their static stretches after the workouts.
This is a huge mistake, because there is a reason why instructors make you do it. Stretching is an excellent way to relieve muscular tension and prevent muscle soreness after a training session. If you take some 10 minutes to slowly warm up before and another 10-15 minutes to stretch afterwards, you will have a much easier time relaxing and getting to sleep later on.
Know Your Strengths
There are numerous examples of excited beginners or professionals training for competition getting carried away and taking on more than they can manage. Long and insanely intense workouts are actually counterproductive.
It is good to be enthusiastic, however, some may feel the psychological and physical downfalls because of it. Common experiences include sleep disturbance, excessive fatigue, irritability, apathy, anger, lack of concentration, a weakened immune system, a decrease in testosterone, and even depression.
Knowing your abilities and stopping when you are close to reaching your absolute limit, is the best way to improve strength, technique, and quickly recover afterwards.
Use Creams, Cold Showers and Massages
IcyHot, Ben Gay, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory products can provide a temporary relief from pain. Advil can help with the discomfort of sore muscles, but cold showers can also help speed up the recovery process. Consider getting a good full body massage about once a week or a couple of times a month to really loosen up those tight muscles.
These are the “secret techniques” of our Sydney martial arts instructors that they use to create winners. The point of martial arts is not to imitate Jackie Chan and break every bone in your body, but to gain power through a strong and resilient body and mind.
No matter how long and intensive your training session may be, what counts the most is taking proper care, getting enough rest and consuming a diet rich in proteins, carbs, and vitamins, as well as staying hydrated. Still, in order to recover mentally and physically, make sure to also get a good 7-8 hours of interrupted sleep. Remember, you need to train smart and rest well, if you want to keep training the martial art you love for decades to come.
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