Self-defense is not the only reason to join a self-defense class. Yes clearly you would enter self-defense to learn how to defend your self if you were ever attacked, but you will also get the side benefits of gaining fitness, concentration, and self-confidence.
When you enroll in an entire system of self-defense, not just in a two-hour class, you will begin to work on fitness. You will probably start out doing extensive stretching somewhat similar to yoga. You may have to do push ups and sit ups as part of your warmup routine in self-defense. Next you may find yourself doing a large amount of “shadow boxing” with different punches and kicks. This will definitely get your heart rate up. You will ultimately not only get a physical work out but you will also get a mental one also.
There is a large amount of things to learn in self-defense. As you learn more complicated moves you will have to remember large combinations. It is not only important to do the steps correctly but it is important to try to keep your form correct also. The idea is to not be sloppy when you practice self-defense. You really need to use your brain to be self aware at all times. You need to fine-tune your movements to be as correct as possible at all times. You will also learn self-discipline, you will have to be disciplined enough to come to class, and you will have to be disciplined enough to practice.
You will find your self-confidence will increase as you practice self-defense. You will feel less like a victim the higher belt you receive. Not feeling like a victim will increase your self-confidence. You are less likely to be a victim when you act self-confident. it becomes a cycle. You feel less like a victim so you become more self-confident and therefore are less likely to become a victim.
If you are interested in self-defense, find a local studio. Many them will let you try a class for free before you decide to sign up. You will not get the same experience from doing a day class. It is great if you enroll in the a school that has different belt levels.
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