By Tom Taylor
In this wonderful time of health-consciousness, there are a million and one ways for a woman to stay in shape. There’s yoga, zumba, crossfit, biking, weight lifting, and of course, there’s always good old-fashioned jogging. For health-minded ladies, there are options in droves. But here’s one cool method you may not have thought of: mixed martial arts.
Yes, MMA—the simple but savage combination of wrestling, kickboxing, Brazilian jiu jitsu, Muay Thai, judo, and so many other magnificent martial arts. In the past, it may have resided on the male-dominated end of the sporting spectrum, but now, thanks largely in part to an ass-whooping UFC champion named Ronda Rousey, MMA belongs as much to girls as it does to boys. Interested in trying it out? Let us tell you why you should.
Obviously, MMA provides an unbeatable way to stay in shape. It's striking facets, based in Muay Thai, western boxing, and kickboxing, will transform you into a cardio machine, and chase away unwanted pounds like nothing else. Its grappling components, rooted mainly in Brazilian jiu jitsu, judo, and several forms of wrestling, will improve your strength and flexibility like you won’t believe. When it comes to fitness, few things rival a foray into MMA. But the benefits to practicing this rapidly growing sport doesn’t end there.
Learning MMA will also provide you with tremendous peace of mind: just imagine walking down the street knowing that, barring a scuffle with Wonder Woman or a Super Saiyan, you can handle pretty much anything that comes your way. There’s a profound comfort in knowing you can protect yourself, in knowing that you can lay somebody with a well-timed punch or a kick to the body, or neutralize an attacker with an effective submission hold. When you pursue mixed martial arts, that comfort is yours to enjoy.
Yet the benefits of learning MMA extend far beyond the physical. Yes, it’ll have you looking like a bronze statue in no time. Yes, it’ll turn you into an ass-kicking warrior woman, should the situation ever call for such action. But as a result of these physical perks, MMA will also provide you with a confidence you didn’t know you had. With some practice under your belt, you can walk tall knowing you look good, and that you can take care of yourself—and that’s a damned good feeling. But don’t take it from us.
Here’s what Maria Demers, a 17 year old, 12 year practitioner of the sport, has to say about her MMA experience thus far.
“As a woman, it gives me so much self confidence. A lot of people say it’s dangerous out there for women just because of how our society is built, but having MMA, and knowing that I can defend myself; it gives me a lot of confidence. And it’s not just on the street, but as a person too. I know I can protect myself, and it keeps me in shape physically—it’s just amazing. I love it to death.”
Intrigued? Rightly so. MMA is changing the lives of women the world over. If you’d like to give it a try, do some research and track down a gym that suits you—or, join Maria Demers at Vancouver’s Franco Kickboxing Pankration, which happens to be the country’s oldest and top gym. Whether you’re after a simple confidence boost, a fitness overhaul, or you’d rather shoot for Ronda Rousey heights alongside Ms. Demers, MMA is sure to satisfy you. Now go punch, kick, knee and elbow your way into the life you’ve always dreamed of. You won’t regret it.
Check out www.FKPMMA.com