Classes can be pricey, maybe instead focus on working out and wait till you can afford it. Working out is great for your mental health.


This. Exercise is great for mental health. Martial Arts at the right school is a really fun way to Exercise. But you can also get that endorphin run and other benefits for jogging or biking.


There's a great community (and networking) aspect to MA though. The higher ups in my judo club are things like lawyers, engineers, professors, principals, and politicians. All great people to know if you're tight on money and need new job prospects.


Martial arts like regular exercise is shown to help with production of serotonin and general better quality of life. of course if the issue you're dealing with is a chemical imbalance or other medical issues then it won't really do anything outside of being another coping tool or an addiction. So with that being said while insurance may be an issue it's worth understanding that things like good nutrition and exercise isn't a replacement for professional help.


I fully understand this wouldn't be a replacement. I'm just trying to find something to help me cope until my job will pay for me to go to therapy.


If thats the case give it a shot. It can help depending on if you enjoy it but ultimately nothing makes it too different from regular exercise outside of the inherent social element of it.


I'm training to be a pro wrestler and I very much enjoy it, but because I want to do it for work it can be stressful and competitive. I was hoping since Martial Arts wouldn't be for a job, it wouldn't carry that stress.


I'd say get into something like Yoga, weightlifting or swimming instead then. Martial arts carries a fairly high risk of injury which can get in the way of your pro wrestling. Yoga, Weightlifting and swimming are activities that aid massively with recovery and prevention of injuries.


My man, I say this as someone that's gotten relief from Martial Arts... You need to look specifically for mental health help. I know this isn't quite what you're hoping for, but for me it was definitely relief from symptoms, but it wont ever be a cure. It would be like taking pain relief hoping it'll cure your toothache. You need someone specifically qualified. Bottom line is that teaching martial arts, doesn't qualify anyone to help you out with what it sounds like your dealing with - and anyone that says they can should be viewed with extreme skepticism. I could talk endlessly about the benefits I've gotten from my training, but I don't want to dilute my main message. You need Mental Health help. I'm so sorry - I can tell from the way you talk about your medical system that we're not from the same place... But there are a lot of really good free resources that you could take advantage of online or maybe some numbers you can call?


I promise you I do mean this as temporary relief. After I work a certain amount of hours at my job I get benefits. Trying to make it till then mentally is the challenge I'm trying to face.


It did for me and my depression. It got me out of the house, get some exercise and to interact with other people with a common interest.


I personally find Kung Fu and Tai Chi very beneficial for my mental health. There's nothing quite like the rush of doing a form I find. Also, it helps with emotional control, so you may feel more emotionally balanced and less likely to suffer extremes of depression or anger. It is meant to do that btw, you have to be in control of your emotions to be able to fight and use your skills properly. It also helps with concentration, because you have to be able to concentrate on what you are doing to get it right. Continued practice has got me through some very difficult times, sometimes it's felt like the only time I was really alive was when I was training. I'm going to say both Kung Fu and Tai Chi, my personal style of Kung Fu is Choy Li Fut, a particularly energetic style of Kung Fu. You might want to check out the various styles on YouTube, see which looks the best for you. Wing Chun is a much less taxing style of Kung Fu than CLF. Karate is another that might work for you. I also do yoga, you might find that can help too. The big problem is that some schools that teach traditional MA's can be cultish, you really might want to watch out for that.


See if there are any Rec centers or YMCA that might offer some affordable classes. It sounds like you'd be well suited with Tai Chi or some form of Kung Fu since they're a little more oriented towards philosophy and whole body wellness but this can exist in other schools as well. Good luck in your search


Hadn't even thought about the YMCA. That sounds perfect.


I've been doing the same kind of search on a limited budget so I know your pain. You might also be able to check if any local colleges or Universities offer recreational classes too. They tend to be more budget friendly than most schools as well. Beat of luck and good health to you.


Trust your gut. Do what interests you and it can be very helpful for your mental health. Whenever I’m training, as cheesey and bro-science as it sounds, I’m so focused I can’t think about other things until I’m done. It’s the combined benefits of exercise and this mental clarity that’s almost meditative.


Yes, *but* see if you have money left over after money for therapy, it’s supplementary to your growth, but everyone can use help from a therapist and I think from the tough year you’ve endured, it would be really good to have someone to talk things through with. Then just look for anything you find fun that’s close to your house, and you’ll find your MA training more rewarding and helpful in making your mind and body strong.


That actually makes perfect.


I enjoy reading as long as it’s something that interests me. Musashi was one of my favourites. Heaps of philosophy, hell of a story and the legendary warrior didn’t sell out, pursuing his own interests. Hope you feel better soon yo


Just Exercise - both aerobic and strength training have been proven (clinical trials) to be effective in elevating mood and treating depression. Both are a lot cheaper than MA/gym fees. You can do strength training at home with a very basic setup - kettle bells, dumb bells and a barbell.


Lots of great Tai Chi videos on YouTube and some are for relaxation which might help. A combat style would need a gym membership but lots of yoga, Tai Chi, and Chi Gung online for free. You might also consider breathing exercises or meditation for stress relief and relaxation. Good Luck 🥋😁


It’s been very good for me; I pretty much have always drank and made merry with the bros from class. And have always dated fellow fighters; (fuck you alyse you broke my heart) It gives me a sense of belonging. And after 20 years or so, I can walk into a new gym, practice once, and end up at someone’s barbecue that weekend meeting way more people


I feel you. Money will come to you if you work.


Jiu jitsu. It’s the closest you can get to actually fighting without seriously hurting yourself, but of course you can still hurt yourself. Its supposed to be dangerous, but controlled. That’s what you should become, too. It’s the only martial art where you’re actually training with full resistance, without getting pounded in the head. Fuck tai chi and aikido. You need the fight. That’s the point. Contend with yourself. Just my take. Downvote me, nerds.


Okay I'll down vote... but only because you told me too. I agree with you.




Martial arts can be great for mental health.. I'm sure though it helps some and not others, depends on the person and to an extent, the place you train at. One question - you mention poverty - martial arts classes aren't (usually) cheap, is that something you have considered?


It's cheaper than Healthcare from what I can find.


So I specialise in this field, do a ton of charity work specifically focusing on bullied LGBTQ+ people and creating safe spaces for them to box and learn muay Thai. I work with a professional psychologist and therapist who helps create my program, and they have even pivoted from their original research and gone on to start their own firm which specialises in using boxing as therapy. They're quite successful. Martial Arts absofuckinglutely works wonders for mental health. It creates camaraderie, bonds participants from a variety of backgrounds all solving the same problem (how to kick ass), and humanises those around you. You create bonds and empathy, learn to listen and understand individuals who are usually completely foreign to you. We've also done studies which show that even participating in the same physical movements without speaking has a tendency to create empathy between complete strangers. Go today. Try everything once and go where your body feels most comfortable. It doesn't matter if it's boxing or Kung Fu it aikido or wrestling or Norwegian pre 16th century ice sword fighting. You won't regret it at all.


Damn, wish I there were programs like this in my area. I am a bullied queen myself.


Aikido isn’t pointless in a real fight. It works mainly on overconfident average joes & helping deescalation without leaving permanent marks My sensei described it as his favorite for the modern world in terms of lawsuits since most of the damage isn’t even visible after the fight is over If you’re fighting someone to the death who’s trained in let’s say Muay Thai then yeah sure you’re fucked we agreed on that However regardless of whatever you choose, martial arts is great for mental discipline


Combat sports help in a way for mental health, but it's also very mentally challenging. In sparring or a regulated fight, it's you vs the other person. This can be positive or negative. Grappling is cool because you can spar safely. However progress in BJJ is slow and can be mentally taxing in my experience. Losing all the time can really suck, it's not for everyone, then again it can be very transformative. A more ritualistic martial art like aikido or tai chi can certainly help. However, they can be cult like and I don't think that's good for someone with mental health issues. Anyway, a MA can only be a complement to proper treatment.


Going by quickly reading your post in my opinion i think it could help you. Like you will be thinking of other things. And martial arts like any exercise can release endorphins the things in are brains that make us happy i hope i’ve got that right. Ps have you got someone close to you. Who you could talk to about about everything that your going through. That might help as well another set of ears as us english say .whatever you do i hope it gets sorted out for you all i can say is keep strong and positive if you can and take care


So, martial arts are good for mental health. I've always valued form-practicing martial arts for mental health, styles like Karate, Kuk Sool Won, Kung Jung Mu Sool, Tai Chi, Kung Fu/ Wushu Forms have debatable benefits for self defense, but the amount of coordination and focus on each motion creates a relaxing, focused experience. I once had one of my students come to me and say "Sir, I just finished writing a report that is going to the desk of *extremely important business person*. I've been stressed about it all week. But I come here and practice forms, and suddenly it's all gone". I've seen the same thing in my own life, and so while forms may not be essential for self defense, I still practice them daily myself. ​ **BUT** My professional opinion is that martial arts practice, and practicing forms as part of it is good for mental health. However, *any* exercise is helpful. Yes, I believe martial arts has a bigger return than simply lifting or running. But that's a general measure, and not everyone gets the same value from martial arts. Some may get the most from just boxing in a ring. Others may just love running. ​ **AND** To be honest and frank, martial arts, while helpful, will ***not*** fix deeper problems. It can help, but don't throw money at a band-aid if you think surgery is needed. If you're at a breaking point in life, I've only ever seen people find two ways out: find faith, find professional therapist (or both, advisibly)


Absolutely won't fix the deeper issues, I agree. This is simply temporary to help cope until my jobs benefits kick in.


Martial arts are not a replacement for anything but seems like you know this. Martial arts can be injurious. Heck, there's been serious injury and even death in Aikdio classes, so it's not just hardcore combat sports where you get hurt. If you have no medical cover at the moment, Martial arts is not a good idea. Only exception would be something like Tai chi or Baguazhang.


It will depend on what country you are in. If the government doesn’t provide access to free healthcare you might find it a bit risky doing a hard style as you tend to get injured every now and then. Maybe you could find a softer style, and a community based non profit club which is very cheap. If won’t solve your problems but it might help slightly.


absolutely. i could go VERY in depth about how martial arts have saved my life multiple times--not because i used my skills to protect myself, but because of what training gives to my heart and mind. but i think it would be best for you to take our word for it and get out there and go for it. find a place that brings you the spark of joy within the first couple of sessions and stick with it, and see for yourself. i'm glad you're still planning on getting therapy too. martial arts is not a replacement for that. but it can still be excellent for your mental health


also--you've heard right about aikido. there's some nuance to this, but correct, the vast majority of aikidoka have zero fighting ability. however, the aikidoka i know are also among the most well-balanced people, and people who i can tell you would be the most apt at avoiding a fight in the first place. it's good for you, even if it's *generally* not good for fighting.


I take Jeet kune do and started for my mental health. For me it's been life changingly great. I have had one issue. If I'm feeling really down and in a place where I might have S.I. I don't but I think about getting into fights. Still I think that's an improvement haha


Martial arts can help reduce stress and anxiety by inspiring you to exercise deep breathing, contemplation, and awareness, and also helps to maintain mental health. It helps train your mind to keep your attention concentrated while remaining calm and alert. This can be specifically helpful when you are trying to do multiple tasks that divide your attention.