What are the health risks of learning Martial Arts at home? Isn’t Martial Arts Training Intrinsically Dangerous?

 It is an irony that as a general rule the more intrinsic risk to health any activity has, the less chance of injury.  This is for the same reason that people rarely hurt their back weight training, but often when lifting a bag of shopping or digging the garden.  In a gym you prepare yourself, warm up, consider the stress to your back and take a moment to square up, straighten your back, bend your knees etc.  But who warms up to pick up their shopping bags, or takes a moment to make sure they lift a spade with a straight back and bent knees?  This is why there are far more serious head injuries in golf than in boxing.  In over ten years of teaching Kung Fu full time, we’ve only seen a couple of injuries and both were the result of someone tripping over a bag or a step and nothing to do with the actual training. 

Now of course training at home means that they will not be any first aiders on hand, but remember you can watch through all videos before you try anything if you believe yourself to be at any particular risk due to ongoing health issues.

It is generally recommended that you check with your doctor before embarking on any new exercise, but there is no activity in this program that has notable risks.  All the exercises are graded according to a star system where one star is the easiest and three the hardest.  If in doubt start with one star and take your time working your way up.  For some people the balance exercises will be the most challenging.  If you know you have balance difficulties, try holding on to something, or simply putting a hand on a wall while you get started. 

Because of our body’s natural cycles, you may find that your ability to do any particular exercise changes from day to day.  This is normal and you shouldn’t worry if one day you can’t do something that you could do the day before.  This applies to strength,

An area of health risk prevalent in many martial arts is that of injury through over training.  There is a huge difference between health and fitness though many people use them almost synonymously.  It is possible to become so fit that you sacrifice your health in the process.  Traditionally, many martial arts have been guilty of this.  When a warrior was training to survive on a battle field, the difference between being fit enough to do a thousand press ups or only a hundred may be the difference between life and death.  When being fit enough to fight all day and still be able to run from Marathon to Athens was necessary, then the training had to be hard.  That’s fine when training to be a professional warrior in the ancient world; when you merely hope to live long enough to one day retire with nothing worse than crippled joints from over training at the age of 35 and likely die by 45.  However, if by “fit” you mean fit enough to enjoy an active life into your 80s, then you might want to question using the same exercise regimes that were used hundreds of years ago by warriors.  Do you need to have calluses on your knuckles from hundreds of press ups?  Do you need to condition your forearms until you have destroyed all the nerves?  Are you likely to need to fight all day without a break?  Probably not.

At Kung Fu Living the exercise regime is designed to optimise functional strength, balance and flexibility without the risk of future injury through wear and tear.  It has been developed to achieve a level of fitness that the average person needs to maintain a functional body into old age; so you can continue to simply do the activities you enjoy doing for as long as possible.

Get the App for Free

with introductory taster lessons for all courses

Get the Free App