Yes, Taekwondo is a popular martial art practiced by people of all ages, but what makes it unique from other martial art styles? What is Taekwondo good for?
Taekwondo is good for self-defense, full body workout, weight loss, flexibility, stress relief, increased discipline, increased confidence, self-control, and more.
This is an ignorant belief because the benefits offered by this amazing art are so enormous that they all cannot be covered in one article.
In this article, however, we will be going through the major unique benefits of Taekwondo for students.
What Are the Benefits of Doing Taekwondo?
Here are some of the benefits of taekwondo for practitioners.
It was in fact originally designed as a self-defense mechanism.
Developed in Korea, Taekwondo is largely considered to be the oldest self-defense martial art in the world.
Interestingly, some students join Taekwondo just for the primary purpose of learning self-defense techniques.
So, if you are one of those students, you should have no trouble learning since most taekwondo schools have dedicated self-defense programs.
Without a doubt, Taekwondo is a beneficial form of exercise that can greatly improve your overall physical fitness, just like most fitness classes.
As reported in several studies, regular taekwondo training can effectively enhance physical fitness, such as aerobic capacity and flexibility, as well as body composition.
Taekwondo training can help you;
- build stronger muscles, bones, and joints
- build speed, strength, stamina, and balance
- develop mobility and flexibility
- improve coordination
- combat obesity
- improve cardiovascular endurance
- increase sharper reflexes
As you learn to kick, punch and block, expect to start noticing your reflexes getting faster, and your muscles getting stronger after just a few weeks.
You will develop balance and gain core strength as you practice more.
Taekwondo is also good for weight loss as it involves highly intense training workouts which can help anyone burn calories quickly and efficiently.
It is one of the fastest and more interesting ways of burning calories when compared to other weight-loss activities.
You will be amazed at the result that an intense 1 hour of taekwondo training can produce for anyone looking to lose weight.
According to the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, to lose weight, there is a need to reduce the number of calories you consume and increase your physical activity.
This means that to lose 1 ½ pounds (0.7 kilograms) weekly, you need to reduce your daily calories by 500 to 750 calories.
So how does taekwondo help with this?
Well, while taekwondo cannot directly influence the number of calories you consume; it sure can increase your physical activity.
It is a highly cardiovascular exercise with all the jumping and drills leading to the active burning of calories.
Taekwondo is one of the best ways to burn the most calories – it burns 937 calories per hour in a 200-pound person. That’s a lot!
For more on how taekwondo can help you lose weight, see my article Does Taekwondo Make You Lose Weight?
Taekwondo is a big stress reliever making it perfect for people (especially adults) looking to relax their nerves after long periods of stressful activities at home or work.
This is because Taekwondo training produces serotonin which is known to relieve stress. But it is more than just that.
Taekwondo being a stress reliever can also be attributed to the fact that it is a form of exercise, and as you might already know, regular exercise helps the brain to produce endocannabinoids which produce sensations of relaxation and calmness, and can also help to reduce the perception of pain.
Taekwondo is an indispensable training program for taekwondo athletes.
To be successful in Taekwondo, an athlete must have optimum flexibility to maintain strength and speed, attack and defend, apply high kicking techniques, minimize injury rate, and recover quickly afterward.
This is important because muscle groups that are not sufficiently flexible can negatively affect performance.
So, before and after every Taekwondo class, your instructor will have you go through a series of stretches.
Stretching loosens and limbers your muscles, getting them ready for strenuous activity and greatly reducing the chances of suffering injuries such as a pulled muscle.
The more you stretch the more limber and flexible your muscles get, thus ultimately increasing the range of motion and also increasing how far you can push your limbs before something goes wrong.
Of course, being flexible is also beneficial because it helps to do things like reduce back pain, reduce the chances of injury, increase your ability to balance, and a whole lot more.
Taekwondo is also great for enhancing self-discipline in both adults and kids.
In today’s world, the ability to maintain control over your thoughts, words, and emotions is tremendously valuable both personally and professionally.
The result of Taekwondo’s attention on self-discipline (especially for kids) is that it helps them to build self-confidence, understand the difference between a journey and the destination, and develop the ability to manage their emotions and make good choices.
This great benefit is one of the many reasons why taekwondo is so good for kids.
Self-confidence is sometimes an issue not only for kids but also for some adults.
Luckily, Taekwondo proficiency can help to develop self-confidence in participants.
Taekwondo improves the self-esteem and confidence of students using its built-in core values such as courtesy and respect.
Taekwondo impacts not just your skill and fitness levels but your outlook on life.
Confidence is about self-belief and the ability to succeed.
Once you go beyond beginner classes and start to develop form and take part in sparring, you will be amazed at how taekwondo impacts other aspects of your life.
With taekwondo, you become more confident in yourself and any situation, whether you’re in danger or just doing a task that takes you beyond your comfort zone.
You’ll discover you can accomplish anything you set your mind to.
Many people fear that taekwondo being a combat sport can be a catalyst for aggressive behavior in students (especially kids).
Interestingly, the opposite is the case.
First, taekwondo is founded on some unshaken principles that promote and encourages peaceful, gentle, and respectful behavior among students.
These five tenets of taekwondo include;
- Indomitable spirit
Following the recitation of the tenets, students are made to recite the student oath, as follows:
- I shall observe the Tenets of Taekwondo.
- I shall respect instructors and seniors.
- I shall never misuse Taekwondo.
- I will be a champion of freedom and justice.
- I will build a more peaceful world.
And since taekwondo is a practical art, most of these philosophies are religiously recognized, respected, and practiced by students generally.
Students are trained to develop the discipline to follow these rules not only in taekwondo classes but in their everyday lives.
This is not all, as several studies have also recognized the role played by taekwondo in the reduction of aggression.
For example, a study has shown that Taekwondo can help children control their behavior and emotions, which is great!
For more on this, check out my article, Is Taekwondo Aggressive?
Is Taekwondo Good for Beginners?
Yes, Taekwondo is great for beginners as it is easy to learn, has a low injury rate, is faster to earn a black belt in, provides a good foundation for martial art transition, and it is fun to learn.
Taekwondo is a beginner-friendly martial art and is often the first martial art that people encounter in their search for a martial art for themselves or their kids.
Taekwondo is great for kids and adults looking to develop their martial art skills in a friendly environment.
It is particularly a great introduction to martial arts for kids since taekwondo combines traditional values with modern athletic techniques.
It also includes traditional patterns or Poomsae to help them develop focus and concentration.
The beginner-friendliness of taekwondo should explain why the art is so popular among martial artists.
Is Taekwondo Good for Kids?
Taekwondo is good for kids as it offers both physical and mental benefits including physical fitness, self-defense, discipline, respect, self-control, and more.
Taekwondo often sits on the top of parents’ lists when it comes to choosing martial arts for their kids, and there is a reason for that.
Taekwondo amazingly affects both the mental and physical health of children.
Children can learn important life skills such as discipline, teamwork, self-confidence, respect, leadership, self-defense, etc.
Taekwondo also helps them to build strong and healthy muscles early on, lower their cholesterol, and improve their cardio.
Children who participate in taekwondo have a reduced risk of childhood heart disease, obesity, and osteoporosis, even as they leave childhood and become adults.
Can Adults Learn Taekwondo?
Adults of any age can learn Taekwondo as it offers many benefits such as self-defense, stress relief, increased fitness, self-confidence, discipline, etc.
Taekwondo, for some adults, may not be easy at first as they will be undergoing many activities that are new to them.
Such activities include punching, kicking, and stretching with lots of cardio work.
However, according to the Martial Arts Industry Association, there are 6 million martial arts participants between the ages of 6 and 11.
Despite this, Taekwondo can be learned at any age, with 3 million participants above the age of 18, and 100,000 being 55 years old or older.
And as you narrow it down to Taekwondo participation in individual countries, adults’ participation remains intact.
For example, statistic shows that about 31.6 thousand people aged 16 years and older participated in taekwondo in England in 2021.
As further proof that Taekwondo is for all ages, let us remember the story of the 94-year-old 6th-degree taekwondo black belt (oldest ever sixth-degree black belt).
For more on adult participation in Taekwondo, see:
Is Taekwondo Good for Self-Defense?
Taekwondo is an effective tool for self-defense as it teaches special self-defense techniques which can be used to keep would-be attackers from getting close.
When it comes to self-defense, Taekwondo is sometimes criticized as not being the most effective martial art.
There may be some truth to this critique since other martial arts such as Krav Maga and Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) intentionally incorporate new techniques from different martial arts to help maximize their lethality.
However, while taekwondo might not be as effective as these two martial arts for self-defense purposes, it remains an effective tool for self-defense.
Is Taekwondo Useful in Real Fight?
Taekwondo can be effective in a street fight. It is, however, not the most useful martial art for street fighting since it is not originally designed for this purpose.
As stated earlier, taekwondo as a self-defense system is designed to help you avoid confrontations.
To me, Taekwondo and street fighting are like light and darkness, they do not go together.
However, even if these two are separate, certain taekwondo techniques can still be applied effectively in a street fight.
Some of these techniques include basic and simple techniques such as front kicks, punches, dodging, blocking, and footwork all of which can be effective in a real fight.
Does Taekwondo Reduce Belly Fat?
Taekwondo can help reduce belly fat through intense training and high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workouts. This must however be complimented with a healthy diet, intermittent fasting, good sleep hygiene, stress reduction, and limited alcohol intake.
I already mentioned that taekwondo is one of the best activities for anyone looking to burn calories.
General exercise (in combination with other factors mentioned above) is a good way to burn belly fat.
You should try to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day doing cardio or strength training.
HIIT is a popular workout that can help reduce visceral fat which is what we see as “belly fat”.
HIIT offers aerobic and resistance training which can help you burn fat faster.
Visit this article Does Taekwondo Make You Lose Weight to learn more on taekwondo for weight loss.
Taekwondo offers amazing benefits which are all good and useful for everyday living.
It is simply a martial art style you cannot go wrong with.
Hi, my name is Godwin. I am a passionate martial artist with black belts in Taekwondo and Karate. I have over 15 years of martial art experience. I created this platform to enable me to help you learn martial art the right way.