Health Watch: Martial Arts

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska - Up next in this week's health watch, Katie Luper tells us how martial arts can benefit your life... from self-defense to self-confidence.

It's seems like a contradiction that martial arts fighting can reduce aggressive behavior but it's shown to improve self-control. They strive for harmony while learning self-defense.

Jerry Potts; Instructor>>"We do have a code of conduct and one of them is 'We shall build a more peaceful world' and what I tell the kids is, how can you go out there and be a bully or be aggressive and or these other things, and yet every day you say I will build a more peaceful world. I say you have to understand that we do, we have to be a community where we respect one another."

It's all starts with respect, the rest is secondary.

It's more than just physical training. They expect good moral character from their students. With that comes self-discipline and self-confidence.

Jerry Potts; Instructor>>"I said, you know, what if we were to bring a young man in here and he was to learn all the patterns, do the step sparring, do all the five requirements, but he was disrespectful to his parents, should he be a black belt? And they say 'no'."

Martial arts can improve memory and focus. It makes your brain work faster. So it's not only good for children but also for adults looking to stay sharp.

"It also helps to build left and right abilities where you're not so dominate right handed/left handed, because we do techniques both right and left, so it helps to balance the brain out."

And of course, fitness is a major benefit. Muscle memory is a common phrase associated with martial arts.

"Once you are really attuned to what you are doing, and the patterns, they gauge Taekwondo as one of the highest calorie burning actives that is available in the world today."

I'm Katie Luper, reporting.