Martial Arts and Women: Why women must embrace the Inner Fighter!

We all know that famous scene where Donny Yen, as Ip Man, beats up ten karatekas (all black belts), using the martial style known as Wing Chun. However, how many of us know that this style of close-quarter fighting was invented by a woman? Martial Arts and Women have a history that is rich and goes way back to the past. There are ample reasons today why women must embrace their inner fighter.

The Snake, The Crane and the Fighter Women

Oral history of the Wing Chun fighting style says that the Yip Man branch of Wing Chun dates back to the Qing Dynasty in China (1662- 1722).  

The Abbess of the Fujian Shaolin Monastery, Ng Mui fled from the destructive Qing forces to the distant Daliang Mountains, on the border between the Yunnan and Sichuan provinces. One day, she came upon a fight between a snake and crane. She combined the lessons she learned from her observations to her knowledge of Shaolin Kung Fu, to create a new style of fighting.

She taught this new style to Yim Wing Chun, the daughter of a local shopkeeper. Wing Chun used this knowledge to fend off a warlord who was trying to force her into marriage. Eventually marrying a man that she loved, Leung Bok-Chao, she passed the new style on to others.

Ng Mui

Why women must embrace their inner fighter

In the present day, martial arts is becoming more and more significant for women practitioners, for the sole reason that violence against women is on the rise, worldwide.

Here are ten reasons for women to sign up for martial arts, in lieu of a  gym membership:

1. Fitness

Martial arts training regimens include a healthy diet, strengthening and conditioning exercises that surpass gym routines. Stretching increases flexibility while strength training enhances core muscle capabilities. Cardio routines enhance the capability to go on for longer times. Martial arts improve overall health and general body mass indices. In other words, you could be looking smoking hot in as little time as six months!

Kelly Muir, PC: Black Belt Magazine

2.Reflex Building

Martial arts sparring improve reflexes as through this training method, you are continuously trying to seek out your opponent’s weaknesses and breach while blocking or parrying their attacks. It improves your mental faculties as well as reaction time.

3. Self-awareness

Meditation is usually a part of each and every martial arts class. In Karate-do, the Japanese- Okinawan  ‘empty- hand’ style of fighting, each class starts and ends with meditation.

In “Meditation and the Martial Arts,” Michael L. Raposa notes that the martial arts just utilize common forms of meditation and implement those techniques as a component of training.

The Chinese thought of martial arts as a pathway to spiritual enlightenment or the Tao. In “Mind Over Matter: Higher Martial Arts,” Tai Chi Master Shi Ming notes that the process of refining one’s consciousness is the absolute basis of higher training in martial arts. By consciousness, Shi Ming did not mean any ordinary ideal, but “to a condition in which body and mind are fused, spirit and matter are united.”

4. Character Building

Kids enrolled in martial arts programs at a young age seem to imbibe team spirit. The various tournaments they participate at with their friends, the events like team kata performances, help increase camaraderie between students of various schools. They get to know people from beyond their immediate circle, different styles and backgrounds of martial art which also helps increase their knowledge.

5. Empowerment and Self-Defense

There are various training exercises employed by masters to teach a martial arts student about real-life situations, where he or she could encounter dangers. One such training method is a multiples situation. Here the student faces more than one opponent and learns what methods are effective for self-defense under such circumstances.

6. Self Confidence

You can finally say ‘No’ to Bullying in all forms with confidence and authority! Some martial arts programs incorporate verbal de-escalation training to teach how to tone down a potentially explosive situation.

About Meenakshi Ganguly

A mom, teacher, student, engineer, explorer or culinary arts, obsessive reader and infrequent writer...in a word an eccentric!

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Meenakshi Ganguly

A mom, teacher, student, engineer, explorer or culinary arts, obsessive reader and infrequent writer...in a word an eccentric!

2 thoughts on “Martial Arts and Women: Why women must embrace the Inner Fighter!

  • January 18, 2017 at 4:22 am
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    Great article. I will be experiencing a few
    of these issues as well..

  • January 20, 2017 at 11:57 am
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    bookmarked!!, I like your web site!

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