By Brian Steward, 4th dan
Have you been looking to improve your physical fitness? If so, you may want to consider participating in CTI Taekwondo training to help improve your fitness. Taekwondo at the Colorado Taekwondo Institute, sometimes referred to as Korean karate, utilizes kicks, punches and blocks for self defense. While developing self defense skills Taekwondo training also develops strength, endurance and flexibility. Taekwondo produces improvements in many aspects of physical fitness via a range of stretches, exercises and martial arts techniques.
Because kicks are central in CTI Taekwondo techniques, flexibility is emphasized in training. Flexibility can be improved while training first by manually stretching muscles in the legs and then further refined by performing kicks. As flexibility increases kicks become faster and are able to hit higher targets. An increase in flexibility leads to an increase in quality of life. Being flexible results in improved mobility and fewer injuries, not only while training, but also in daily life.
Cardiovascular health can also be improved by training in Taekwondo. Exercises like jumping jacks are paired with dynamic activities such as sparring to keep the heart rate elevated while training. The longer the heart stays elevated, the better the cardiovascular health is. Taekwondo training is energetic which results in little time for rest meaning that heart rate remains elevated through a large portion of every training session. Enhanced cardiovascular health has many well known benefits including reduction in body weight, reduction of blood pressure and reduction in total cholesterol levels.
Taekwondo techniques require muscular strength to be effective and require muscular endurance so that they can be used in any situation. Muscular endurance and strength complement each other in martial arts; it is useless to be able to throw only one strong punch, just as it is useless to be able to throw a hundred weak punches. Muscular strength is built in Taekwondo with body weight exercises, like pushups and situps, and also through performing martial arts techniques, like kicks. Repetitions of both techniques and body weight exercises not only increase the strength of muscles but also increase the endurance of the same muscles. These training techniques result in toned supple muscles.
Taekwondo training can dramatically help individuals in attaining their fitness goals. Whether your goal is to lose weight, to develop balance, to improve flexibility, to boost cardiovascular health, to strengthen and tone muscle, to enhance body control or to augment agility training in Taekwondo will be a great workout program for you. General health will be positively affected by training in Taekwondo because of the balanced approach to physical fitness that is required for successful Taekwondo techniques and required for general self defense skill.