What you may not know is that karate is great for the heart. In fact, the cardiac benefits of karate classes gives a whole new meaning to the idea of cardiovascular fitness. With that in mind, here are some ways that taking karate classes can protect and strengthen your heart.
Karate Raise the Heart Rate
When training karate, the different drills can increase your heart rate, helping you build good cardiovascular endurance. Since the only real way to improve your heart’s health is by participating in activities that stress it out, karate is the perfect sport to do so. It can increase your fitness level and lower your blood pressure too.
The benefit of raising the heart rate is that it oxygenates the blood, and helps promote calorie burning even after you’re done working out. People of all ages need to keep their hearts pumping, and martial arts is a great way to do it.
Karate Lower Blood Pressure
Did you know that a high-intensity karate workout can help lower your blood pressure? It’s true. Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a leading contributor to heart disease.
When you work out, your heart becomes stronger – and that means that it can pump blood more efficiently than it can without exercise. The less effort your heart has to expend on pumping blood, the lower your blood pressure is.
The repetitive movements of karate techniques your body makes act like high-intensity interval training which aids in improved cardiovascular strength and blood pressure.
Karate Lowers Cholesterol
LDL cholesterol – the so-called “bad” cholesterol” – is a contributing factor in heart disease. Regular participation in karate helps you lose weight and that decreases the amount of LDL cholesterol in your blood.
There’s evidence that working out also shrinks the proteins that carry cholesterol through the bloodstream, making them less dangerous to the heart. On a related note, regular vigorous exercise – such as the kind you can get in a karate workout – helps to increase HDL or “good” cholesterol.
Karate Reduces Stress
One thing that separates karate from many other forms of exercise is that it requires mental stillness combined with physical exertion. Mental stillness contributes to mindfulness, a practice that can significantly decrease stress and anxiety in both children and adults.
Considering that there is a direct link between stress and heart health (stress contributes to high blood pressure and related issues), the fact that participating in karate can reduce stress is a huge benefit for the heart.
Training in karate can relieve stress and allows you to focus on the task at hand as you aren’t as distracted. Keeping your body active also triggers the release of endorphins and reduces the risk of premature death.
In addition to the benefits already mentioned, training in karate also helps to improve discipline, build muscle coordination, and increase self-confidence.
This month, why not give your heart 💓a boost by adding karate classes to your workout routine?
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