LET'S FACE IT: When it comes to cardio, most of us would rather spend that time watching Oprah, shopping for clothes with our girlfriends or participating in any other tortuous event--really. Pounding away on the treadmill like a lab rat is no one's idea of a fun time, yet we drudge though it to keep our bodies lean and mean. But what if we told you that you don't need to spend 30-40 minutes bustin' your butt on the stationary bike, treadmill, stair-stepper or elliptical trainer to shed bodyfat? It's true. And what's more, this activity allows you to pick up other useful abilities, such as beating up the other boyfriends for that coveted seat outside the dressing room. What is this great activity? Martial arts, and according to a study from the Human Performance Laboratory at Wayne State College (Nebraska), it boosts heart rate and calorie burn to levels equivalent to those produced by a good run.
Hai-Ya to Your Heart | Scientists studied the heart rate and calorie expenditure of 18 male and female beginner-level martial artists during a typical tae kwon do workout. The routine cycled front kicks, butterfly stretches, forearm strikes, crunches, side kicks, quad stretches and push-ups. Researchers found that, on average, the men's heart rate rose to 80% of their maximum heart rate and they burned about 600 calories per hour. The women showed similar results.
RELATED ARTICLE: MARTIAL MATTERS
This graph shows the average heart rate and calorie expenditure of males performing a typical tae kwon do-style workout.
Calories Burned Per Hour 600
Percent of Max Heart Rate 80%
Graph created using data from Glass, et al., 2003.
Note: Table made from bar graph.
RELATED ARTICLE: CHOP AWAY AT BODYFAT
Stop thinking the only option for keeping lean is the cardio aisle of your local gym. Martial arts training not only burns a similar amount of calories and fat but also improves balance, coordination, muscular endurance and cardiovascular fitness. Besides tae kwon do, you can also try aikido, kung fu, judo, karate, jiu jitsu or any of the many other styles of martial arts.
BY TIM SCHEETT, PHD
M & F Science Editor JIM STOPPANI, PHD
Scheett, Tim. "Kick-ass cardio.(THE LATEST HIGH-PERFORMANCE FITNESS AND HEALTH NEWS FROM THE SCIENTIFIC COMMUNITY)(cardiovascular exercises)(martial arts)." Joe Weider's Muscle & Fitness Apr. 2005: 173. General OneFile. Web. 20 Nov. 2009.
Gale Document Number:A131332265
Disclaimer:This information is not a tool for self-diagnosis or a substitute for professional care.
United States Judo Association - USJA
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