If feeling good, learning defensive skills, having a great looking body, and boosting your energy levels aren’t good enough excuses to engage in vigorous exercise such as martial arts, a recent academic study shows that intense physical activity like martial arts confers cancer protection. Anyone who has fought Cancer or known a person who survived it is aware that a cancer diagnosis can be a devastating event. This disease not only takes its toll but also results in a large number of deaths. Some of these deaths are avoidable by practicing healthy lifestyle habits.
There are a great number of researches that prove exercise is the most potent cancer-fighting weapon. And when you are involved in full body rigorous workout like martial arts, it can certainly decrease the risk of some cancers, particularly breast and colon cancer. This fact sheet will further enlighten you about the relationship between martial arts and cancer.
Martial arts benefits that help in preventing and fighting cancer:
Many research studies support the idea that practicing martial arts during cancer treatment helps you feel better. Some of the well-known martial arts benefits that help you in tackling cancer problem include:
- Reduction in pain
- Lowering the chance of having physical side effects of cancer treatment, such as fatigue, neuropathy, lymphedema, osteoporosis, and nausea
- Reducing the risk of depression and anxiety
- Keeping you as mobile and independent as possible
- Increasing your energy and strength
- Improving your balance to reduce fall injuries
- Preventing muscle loss
- Improving sleep
- Preventing weight gain and obesity, which are linked to increased cancer risk
- Decreasing the amount of time you need to stay in the hospital
- Making your treatment more effective at destroying tumor cells
- Improving survival rates for certain cancers
- Preventing other chronic diseases, such as heart disease and diabetes
- Improving the quality of life
Many cancer patients get worried about whether martial arts training would be safe during the treatment or not! If you are one of them, don’t worry there’re some shreds of evidence to the contrary. In many kinds of research, it was found that workout like martial arts was not only safe, it also improved the health outcomes of cancer patients. Furthermore, it is proved now that exercise during treatment can actually change the tumor microenvironment and trigger stronger anti-tumor activity in your immune system.
Some mental benefits that motivate cancer patients to fight harder against chronic ailment like cancer:
Martial arts teaches a person to be resilient:
Even the most devastating news of cancer can’t make a martial artist hopeless. Unlike normal people, martial artists have a very strong mental strength that can bear almost anything. A person who can achieve victory in the toughest grounds and against the most difficult opponent is well aware of adversity. Cancer can’t crash down the life of a person who becomes a veteran of hardship and knows just what it takes to win. Martial arts teach the power of perseverance and resilience and these two strengths are greater than any obstacle life could throw at you.
Additionally, even if you are not a professional martial artist and just practicing this great workout for fitness, you will learn the same spirits from this exercise. By never giving up on your dreams, martial arts teaches you to be resilient and to never surrender.
Martial arts teach fighting spirit and explicit objectives:
Every other day we had to deal with some arduous difficulties that truly test our mettle. And if you have to go through a disastrous disease like cancer, it would be the most irksome experience of your life. This is because undergoing rounds of treatments and sessions of radiation and chemotherapy are all incredibly taxing on a human body. You don’t feel appetite in these tiring and torturous moments of your life and the only thing that can hold you is your faith and clear objective that you have to recover from this epidemic.
In such demanding times, we all need to be reminded of what we are fighting for. And martial arts is really helpful in sticking to explicit objectives. When practicing this strenuous workout, you never lose sight of what you want to achieve in your life. You learn to quit quitting in hard times. This mental capacity really helps us in the battle against cancer.
It gives you mental strength:
Perhaps more important than anything martial arts ever give a martial artist is a mental strength to overcome any obstacle in life. Throughout our worldly lives, we have to deal with things that are beyond our control, both good and bad. Seemingly impossible circumstances will happen to us that will test who we are and what we are made of. What takes us out of such unwanted situations is our mental strength. And there is no other way as effective as martial arts is to make us mentally strong.
Martial arts teach us to fight and soldier on, looking past our troubles and using the gifts that were given to us to succeed. Martial arts train people to give their full and fight until the final bell. They get committed to finding a way to win every fight even if the fight is against critical health conditions like cancer.
Guideline about training safely during cancer treatment:
Instead of just jumping into the ring or some martial arts class and start intense training, it’s better to take precautions while training if you are having side effects from your cancer or its treatment. Discuss with your doctor about the martial art you are practicing and how hard you are training. He might recommend you to change your training plan depending on your specific side effects. For instance, if treatment is affecting your bone strength, you should avoid performing moves that put a strain on the neck and raise your risk of falling. Here are some simple steps to follow for safe training:
Even if you were physically active before your treatment, initiate your martial arts training slowly to avoid any kind of injury and discomfort.
Exercise in a safe environment:
During cancer treatment, your immune system may get weak, so, it would be better to avoid large gyms where germs are in abundance.
Listen to your body:
If your energy level is low, train as long and as hard as you feel comfortable to avoid any injury.
Keeping yourself hydrated during your training will save you from fatigue.
Eat a nutritious diet:
The right foods, especially those high in protein, help your body recover after rigorous training. An oncology dietitian will help you develop a nutrition plan for those tough days.
See your doctor regularly:
You may feel or see changes in your body with your training, so it would be highly recommended to see your doctor regularly.