Ideal Martial Arts for Senior Citizens - 3 Experts Weigh In

Are you a senior citizen looking for a good physical activity that's both fun and effective? If so, martial arts may be a perfect choice.

It is truly admirable and even humbling to see senior citizens taking up the challenge to learn martial arts, without being concerned by feelings of physical inferiority while being surrounded by youth.

But the question is, what are the different forms of martial arts that are best suited for our elders? Self-defense training that is safe yet strengthens our senior citizens are a must because minor injuries that can be brushed off by youth might translate into grave injury on a frail and old body hence care, caution, and proper training is vital.

I consulted a close friend of mine whose seen his fair share of senior citizens over eleven years of training and he shared:

Internal martial art forms are ideal for older people. Styles such as Tai Chi Quan, Xing Yi Quan, Baguazhang, Liuhe Bafa, I-Liq Quan, and Yi Quan. These martial arts aim to strengthen the body internally to coordinate with external muscles for self-defense.

  • In the process of training, old people find their internal organs are exercised and healthy while having greater mental acuity and reflexes. It is important to take note and understand any pre-existing health conditions that the elderly might suffer from as some tend to be more robust despite their age while others have to be guided very delicately to ensure no health flares occur and some level of strengthening occurs.
  • At the same time, there are a few internal styles that would not be recommended, as they toughen up the internal body through extreme physical actions. Tong Bei Quan is one example where practitioners slap their bodies with gradually increasing force until their organs and muscles are both very tough and balanced.

Another buddy of mine, one who works in the security force and is middle-aged, when posed with the question of the best form of martial arts for seniors, responded:

In my opinion and experience, a basic Krav Maga class would be perfect. The point of teaching self-defense to seniors should be focused on boosting their bodily strength, and flexibility as well as how to detect dangerous situations and do what they need to, in an extreme scenario, to leave unscathed. 

  • Krav Maga goes straight into real-life scenarios and how to protect oneself with the use of things and situations we face on a daily basis.
  • There are no fancy moves or philosophies to memorize and it keeps things simple and easy to remember, which is very important when teaching the elderly.
  • Not to mention, the option of physical training during class is always open and often encouraged in Krav Maga and with a proper coach, they can discover exercises that are suited for their body types because each person is different with a unique body composition and ignoring this can be disastrous, especially when dealing with senior citizens.
  • I feel people tend to think explosive and flashy moves are very effective when In reality, some of the most effective moves are totally non-flashy and appear rather boring. A basic Krav Maga class is what I would recommend to any senior citizen that is keen to take up self-defense.

It is fascinating to observe that despite coming from different backgrounds, both individuals have placed emphasis on customizing self-defense training for each individual elderly.

Are you looking for a way for martial arts to attack others instead?  Here we will look at the different forms of offensive martial arts, and how they can help you protect yourself against potential attackers.

For a different take, MMA states martial arts as ideal for the elderly, Brazilian Jiujitsu, Aikido, Krav Maga, Karate, and Judo.

  • It might be a shock that Jiujitsu and Judo are included as those are well known for their high-intensity moves yet the reason behind suggesting these art forms was that they stimulate the mind and body greatly while improving the physical balance of seniors.

To be honest, a single article is not sufficient to cover the scope of this vast topic and it should be rightly so. The biggest mistake one can make is to think one size fits all in martial arts or in life.

Each individual has to be assessed individually and his/her strengths, weaknesses, and inclinations have to be observed prior to training so that training outcomes can be maximized and the student receives the full benefit of self-defense.

Have you been thinking of setting up a home gym for martial arts or any other physical activity? If yes, then choosing the right flooring is essential as it not only helps you in doing your exercises comfortably but also aids in protecting you against any consequences. Not only must your home gym be suited to give maximum protection and comfort, but it should also be easy to maintain and last longer.

In this article, we will discuss various aspects such as size, material, density, and other factors that need to be considered when buying a Mat for Martial Arts. We’ll also list some of the popular martial arts mats which have achieved overall positive ratings from experienced martial artists.

Martial arts enthusiast & loves exploring all of life before it all ends!
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