Jiu-Jitsu and Stress Relief

When you are trying to relieve stress, many people suggest getting some exercise. Unfortunately, doing so is often easier said than done, especially with all the possible activities available to take part in. However, it is important to search for that outlet because when stress becomes unmanageable or overwhelming, you can suffer physically and mentally. If you’re looking for something to do to work on your stress, consider trying jiu-jitsu for the following reasons:

Exercise releases endorphins

As mentioned above, exercise is often recommended as a way to relieve stress. This is because taking part in any sort of physical activity, not just Martial Arts, releases endorphins into your brain meant to relieve pain and stress. These are just one of many​neurotransmitters released during exercise: physical activity also stimulates dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin, all of which regulate your mood.

Movement is medicine. Due to my own injuries, I only exercise on the ground, and doing so blood, fluid and nutrients get into the joints. As Bruce Lee said, “Flow like water. Be water, my friend.”

Training helps you focus 

Stress can be caused by the amount of loud, negative thoughts that flood your mind during distressing times in your life and focusing on Jiu-Jitsu instead of these negative thoughts helps to let your brain take a break for a few hours. Rather than thinking about what you cannot  change, taking Jiu-Jitsu classes brings you into the present and requires you to focus on improving and applying your skills. 

It also teaches you how to value patience. Jiu-Jitsu, like all Martial Arts, is about the process rather than your ultimate goal or outcome. None of what you learn in your classes will happen overnight; you have to continuously work at your skills to get better at your skill. It takes repetition to hard wire it in. You can easily apply this learned patience to other areas in your life, helping you learn how to reduce stress in your daily life rather than just on the mat.

Jiu-Jitsu expertly trains the mind in “singleness of mind.” Practitioners need to focus to get anywhere. This is automatically forced in just by attending class. Singleness of mind is key for spiritual development.

Support from your community

Like with other hobbies, constantly participating in your Jiu-Jitsu training will build you a community of your peers. Taking classes will give you a support system and a positive place to go to when life gets rough. Having this support system of trusted peers will help bolster your mood and give you encouragement in whatever life throws your way. Common among practitioners, Jiu-Jitsu is known to be better at therapy than “therapy.”

Promotes a healthy lifestyle 

Taking Jiu-Jitsu classes will eventually start to affect your life off the mat as well as on it. Joining Jiu-Jitsu classes will give you ​a healthier lifestyle​, which will reduce stress and give you a positive outlook on life. – Nicholas Gerace

Published by Nicholas Gerace 5D - Upstate New York

Nicholas Gerace is retired Army Officer, Pilot and Commander. Currently, Nicholas is a Professional Life Coach with niche's in Health, Nutrition and Spirituality.

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