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Hi everyone, I hope you enjoyed part 3 of our 4 part series of guest posts from Born Tough Affiliates discussing the reasons why you should giving boxing a try as a form of physical activity. In part 4 of this guest series, our guest writers are discussing the benefits of another very specific sport- Mixed Martial arts (MMA). MMA training is also a great way to get in a full body workout (whether you plan to spar with a partner or just use individual training for fitness purposes).

**Consult with your doctor and/or a Registered Dietitian before pursuing significant exercise or food changes**

Check out the full guest post below to find out some reasons why you may wanting to give MMA a try.

With regards to wellness, MMA is likely one of the most challenging forms of exercise in the world. There is no uncertainty that MMA warriors are among the fittest individuals on earth. They have everything – extraordinary cardio, strong character, discipline, and mind-blowing flexibility and resiliency. In case you are searching for an exercise option that can help you achieve your fitness goals, whether it is about decreasing fat and building lean body mass or just wanting to improve overall physical health, MMA is another one of the best sports you can practice.

On the off chance that you have never thought about mixed martial arts as a fitness option, you might be considering how it can benefit you. This combat art can be very healthy for everybody regardless of age or gender, even children can benefit! While some people think that learning physical combat skills are only for fighting/self-dense, combative techniques can also be for anybody hoping to improve their fitness levels.

In this article, we feature the top four advantages of this combat sport. However, it is important to pick MMA trainers that are well experienced and have real-life accomplishments that can teach you in-depth techniques, form, and moves. What is even more important is that, to receive the rewards we talk about in this article, you should enjoy training and have passion for what you are doing during your training sessions with a genuine fitness goal in mind.

Before we dig in, always remember, in order to effectively perform in your workout sessions, you need to wear proper sports gear.  Wearing MMA sports gloves, shorts, mouthpieces, and other attire items will keep you safe and flexible during your matches and exercise routines.

1- Convert Fat to Muscle

MMA exercises can be intensive fat-burners since high intensity interval exercises can promote a boost in metabolism even up to the 18 hours after the exercise sessions are finished while helping develop muscle simultaneously. MMA takes distinctive battling disciplines — boxing, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, wrestling—and consolidates them into a mixed battle framework that can get you to an optimal level of fitness.

None of your body will be ignored during MMA exercises, which means you will experience a complete workout in all training sessions. Intensive training is compelling because it activates and trains many of your muscles even beyond the muscles you realized you could train.

2- Enhanced body strength.

One of the numerous advantages you will see during MMA workouts is enhanced energy levels. What’s more, you won’t only feel it during weightlifting. You will find benefits in your day-by-day life as well. Many of these MMA exercises will improve numerous auxiliary muscles that become weak due to elongated sitting in day to day life. Luckily, with the training provided during this type of exercise, many exercises will become simpler with time.

Many other sports require one set of muscles to be utilized overlooking the others. Swimmers will generally have solid shoulders; soccer players will have more grounded lower bodies, while cyclists will have solid quads. In comparison, MMA is a sport that is structured as a full-body workout.  (Other activities are still great options for exercise and can be combined with other workouts for other body parts to gain a full body benefit).

How exactly does MMA empower you to reach such improvements in body strength? Many of the exercises in some combative techniques, such as MMA, are intended to include each muscle in your body. Kicking will help develop your leg strength. As you punch, your arms, lats, and core will build strength. Grappling will help with continued core muscles development. This combination of muscle work helps create a full body workout beyond many other types of exercise.

3- It makes you disciplined

This fighting art helps individuals mature and grow both physically and emotionally beyond what they develop in the ring. These athletes develop mental and physical balance, self-control, and patience with the ability to develop an incredible outlook on life, especially when training has a dedicated focus on control of both mind and body. If you pursue training seriously, you will explore and learn balanced eating to fuel your activity, have a focus on proper rest, and develop an innate understanding of when to train light or when to train more intensely. It can also help you develop your overall character to promote both confidence and respect.

4- It combats stress

Many people suffer from mental health challenges such as anxiety, depression, or stress during their day to day lives, and practicing this combat art can be an amazing opportunity to let loose. Mentally, you can develop greater emotional control in upsetting circumstances, which can assist you in responding more practically within situations rather than reacting out of reflex.

Instead of resorting to harmful ways to deal with day-to-day stress such as drinking, binge eating, smoking or other less healthful habits, it is a much healthier solution to blow off some steam by practicing this or another similar sport.

Please let me know if you have any questions or feedback on this fun article. Finding a sport or activity you enjoy can help make exercise and fitness a more enjoyable and consistent part of your life and considering more “out of the box” training options, such an MMA, can bring a new option for an enjoyable activity into your life while also promoting overall health.

Thank you to Born Tough Affiliates for providing us with this fun exercise related blog series.

Stay healthy!

Ricci-Lee Hotz, MS, RDN

Denver’s Dancing Dietitian

A Taste of Health, LLC

“Improving Quality of life one bite at a time”