How MMA Impacts Your Brain: The Good, Bad and Ugly

Mixed martial arts is known to be the best method that can help you stay disciplined. It is a device that has been used by parents, and teachers and even recommended by some of the best instructors globally. According to some of the best coaches, MMA is not just a simple practice that can help you improve your physical strength, it also helps in improving the mental health of the athlete. Apart from this MMA is used as an exercise that helps you get rid of negative energy.

There are multiple pieces of research evidence that prove the reduction in anxiety and depression due to MMA practice. You are not only letting go of your anger, MMA works as a channel that will help you get rid of your daily frustration. As well. Most people debate that MMA is not good for the brain and mental health because it causes injury. Apart from this, recovering from the injury takes too long and it eventually affects your physical and mental well-being.

With the help of this article, you will know about the effect of mixed martial arts on your brain along mental health. We will talk about the best and worst parts of MMA and how it impacts the brain as well. For people who are skeptical about the benefits, we have listed down some ways MMA helps your brain as well.

How Does MMA Impact The Mind And Brain?

MMA is used as an exercise substitute that is entirely based on the command you have over your physical body. This means that just like exercises, MMA will also help you reduce the chance of cardiovascular issues and improve physical fitness. However, it is completely skill-based work that helps you to stay engaged and enjoy the workout as compared to boring and monotonous workout plans that most people follow. If we look at the impact of MMA on our mind and body we will see that it improves mind and body coordination and it specifically helps the mind to stay in full control.

From handling your emotions at the right time to using your body effectively you will see improvement in a lot of ways. According to multiple researchers, people who practice MMA see a reduction in depression and anxiety and they see improvement in their mood as well. Apart from this, it improves empathy and the person becomes aware of the value of pain as well. People who practice MMA also develop a habit of helping people and eventually, you will see that their social circle gets bigger. Overall, MMA is not just a game, it is a lifestyle that helps you adopt healthy habits and change your life completely.

Is MMA Good For Your Mind?

Most people argue that MMA is not good for the health of the brain because you are continuously trying to knock the other individual down which can cause a concussion. Apart from this, various locks and chokes disconnect the oxygen supply to your brain for a few seconds which can be pretty dangerous for your health. Overall people feel MMA is not an ideal workout for the brain and has been notorious for the dangerous effect it has on the mind and body.

Although these things are true, professional MMA practice has a completely different process. You have a medic by your side at all times and your instructors know how to handle a situation like that. Apart from this, it all comes down to your expertise. Most professionals know how much pressure they should put and where they need to put pressure which reduces the pain and does not affect the body too much. On the contrary, if you are just new and still practicing, you might end up facing issues regarding injury and permanent damage.

In case you feel discomfort or pain, try to reach out to the doctor or tell the instructor right away. Sometimes, muscle strain can affect breathing or in other cases, when the injury is not treated right away, this can cause issues.

How Does Your Mind Benefit From MMA Practice?

When it comes to the mental benefits of MMA, you will be surprised by how much you can gain from it. According to recent research conducted by Harvard Health, it was seen that patients with stress and anxiety improved when they tried MMA practice. Apart from this, they also saw that people’s MMA improves their mental capability, especially as they linked it to improvement in memorizing things in old age. Some of the benefits of MMA that have been registered by researchers have been listed to help you know why it is good for people to practice MMA.

  • MMA is great for improving focus. Where most people get distracted very easily, multiple exercises within MMA can help people improve their focus. These are the exercises that mainly help with remaining calm and letting out the anger. Most instructors recommend these training sessions for people who have ADHD. Although this doesn’t affect the hormonal imbalance, it is still good enough to help them see the improvement.
  • Another important benefit that you will see is an improvement in empathy. Kids who practice MMA have been reported to help others more and feel their pain. Apart from this, it helps in understanding the price of pain which eventually helps people in becoming socially acceptable and develop a sense of morality.
  • Apart from improvement in social skills, it has been noticed that people who practice MMA are better at handling their emotions and making rational decisions in extreme situations. This is especially important for people who have anger issues. To explore it further, MMA provides a channel through which an individual can let out their anger and frustration and feel relaxed. If the same anger does not find an outlet, most people either develop anger issues or become extremely violent.
  • Multiple pieces of research indicate that MMA is very helpful in improving the memory of an individual. This is especially because it improves blood circulation which nourishes the brain and speeds up the healing process as well. Furthermore, it helps in improving bone strength, and hair growth and improves the quality of skin as well.

Bottom line

To sum it all up, MMA is an art where you learn to control your body along with your emotions. However, injuries happen in all games but with MMA, concussion is very normal. You just need to learn how to control yourself in such a situation and about first aid. In most conditions, you will get help from a medic but in some cases, athletes faint due to less supply of oxygen and this can become an issue. Even after getting injured, learn how to reduce the damage and if you are just getting on the mat, learn about the ways you can prevent the injury. You also need to wear headgear to reduce the chance of injury. It all comes down to how careful you are and how many preventive measures you follow. In most cases, people forget that their body needs care otherwise the damage will become permanent. Most issues only happen when the athlete ends up neglecting all the precautions. With a better understanding of the precautions and starting the fight with a good stretch, you can reduce the likelihood of injury.

Kirsty Wark

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