SELF DEFENCE & STRESS RELIEF
This Article was written by Aidan Carroll who has has been involved in martial arts for over 20 years. He has studied many arts including Shotokan, Ju-jitsu, Aikido, and holds a 2nd degree black belt in kickboxing. Aidan is one of only 4 Irish men in the world to hold the instructors diploma in Krav Maga. Check out Aidan's Links in Red. Aidan is very kind and approachable and is well respected in the community for his professionalism, care and commitment. if stress is affecting any part of your life and you want to make a positive and lasting change both to your overall fitness and confidence Contact Aidan and make that change today.
How Self Defence can help Release Stress
Many students who attend my classes & seminar’s will be somewhat nervous on their first day. This is very normal & natural. This feeling of nervousness is the result of adrenaline release. It is sometimes referred to as our “Flight or Fight” response. What we must remember is that when we experience this feeling that it is there to help us and not to defeat us, although it will and can defeat us if we let it.
We will always fear what we don’t know or understand. I clearly remember as a young boy joining my first Karate club. The nervous excitement was overwhelming.
I thought by continuous training this feeling would LEAVE ME ALONE! And the good news is it doesn’t. What’s good about that? I hear you say. Well let me explain. Think of a situation or problem or task that makes you feel nervous. The most common being public speaking. If you have to deliver this speech and you experience very little adrenaline release, chances are this is the time you will mess things up. Over confidence will defeat you. This is when we should be experiencing adrenaline release and keeping it under control.
There is no such thing as NO FEAR. Any living being feels fear. Everything we do in life has a consequence; it is the result of these actions that we fear. Have you ever felt like leaving your job, or taking a trip around the world, or leaving an unhappy marriage? Ask yourself what stops you from doing this. The answer is FEAR.
It sounds great at the time, but once we step out of our comfort zone, it doesn’t feel so great anymore. Let me give you an example. I work full time as Personal Trainer & Self Protection instructor. A big part of my job is to motivate people. Only yesterday in the gym I had a client who has just started on her programme. The goal set for this particular client was to fit into a particular dress for an upcoming wedding. This should not be the reason for wanting to start training. All my clients are told that training should be a regular part of life. But this is often requested, and most when seeing results will continue to train.
Any way back to the story. When a client wants to tone up or improve there fitness levels they have to be willing to step outside of their comfort zone. Most are not willing to do this -at least not on a regular basis. I initially started the client off at a medium level of intensity, and each week progressed the intensity. It is when the intensity level steps up that we step out of our comfort zone. However most commercial gyms lose clients because the client does not see any results. If you are or have been a member of a gym how often has your programme and intensity level been assessed?
Once, twice, never or every 4- 6 weeks? If your answer is the latter then you have found a good gym with dedicated staff, so stick with them. As a Personal Trainer I need to take clients out of there comfort zones on a regular basis. But this brings us back to our old sparring partner FEAR. We fear the discomfort-we fear the pain. The growth is in the pain & the discomfort. My client was not willing to step out of her comfort zones. She said she really wanted to get into this dress for the wedding and was willing to do whatever it takes, but every time I stepped up the intensity, she wanted to quit. This is when I need to change the client’s mind-set. I ask them how bad they want to achieve their goals. They need to trust me as fitness professional and accept that no ambition or goal will be reached without hard work. There is no substitute for hard work. I basically told this client if you want this toned physique you are going to have to work for it, otherwise you are wasting my time and yours.
This brings us to the main topic of this article. How exercise can help relief stress. If you feel good about your body you will most likely have a positive mind-set. At one time or another we will all over eat. How does this make you feel? Well it doesn’t make you feel good about yourself. So say you don’t exercise regularly and your diet is not as good as it should be, and as we get older our BMR-basal metabolic (the rate at which our body burns calories at rest) decreases so our waist line increases every year.
This of course will be stressful. Combine this with problems we face each day, such as meeting dead-lines in work, bringing the kids to school, collecting the kids from school, preparing meals, etc. and knowing you need to get yourself into shape will be certain triggers for STRESS.
You need to take control or stress will kill you. I know that sounds very blunt, but it is FACT. STRESS KILLS.
Many of my students initially started Self Defence training out of fear. The fear of not being able to protect themselves or a loved one in a conflict situation. This feeling of fear causes stress. It is extremely satisfying for me to help people feel more confident about themselves, be it from changing there physique or changing there fear into confidence.
Many who attend my classes come along for the opportunity to release some stress after a busy day at work. It is so therapeutic to let your adrenaline, stress and or aggression out by hitting the pads during a self defence session. And the cardiovascular and toning benefits of this type of training all help to keep you in shape and release the STRESS.
Some key points to remember:
It will be obvious to you what causes stress in your life, one by one eliminate them in order of importance. At some time in our lives we will be blind sided by stressful situations, such as a loved one being struck by illness, the death of a family member or friend, we can little or nothing to change this, but ask yourself how much more stressful this will be to you if you have not already addressed the other stressors in your life.
We should strive to have as much positive influence in our life as possible. This could be the books we read, the films we watch, and the friends we keep. If we constantly chose to read negative books, watch negative films, and most of our friends seems to be always crying on your shoulder or constantly telling you how life has dealt them a crap hand this will most definitely effect our stress level. Our brain is like a sponge, what we see and hear shapes our character.
I am not saying you should live in a bubble. We all know and are aware of the negativity that surrounds us every day, but that doesn’t mean you have to live with it.
Aidan Carroll has been involved in martial arts for over 20 years. He has studied many arts including Shotokan, Ju-jitsu, Aikido, and holds a 2nd degree black belt in kickboxing. Aidan is one of only 4 Irish men in the world to hold the instructors diploma in Krav Maga. Having done door work in many different pubs and clubs in Ireland for 3 years, Aidan quotes " When a situation becomes live and is taken outside of the Dojo (training arena) with respect , no other art I have studied is more practical than Krav Maga". Aidan graduated from the University of Limerick and holds a level 2 NCEF diploma in Anatomy and Physiology and Personal training. Aidan is also a sports injury rehabilitation therapist and a strength & conditioning coach and is also trained in emergency first aid and CPR.