Meditation in Martial Arts
Learning meditation is not about going to the Himalayas, meditating in a monastery and then returning to normal life and forgetting about it. True application of meditation encourages you to incorporate the principles into your everyday life and to every breath. This is the only way to authentically begin to experience a sense of inner peace and it is possible!
Meditation is an ancient practice and can be found in various forms around the world. The benefits of having a regular practice of meditation are astounding. Not only does it have the power to change the brain, it can improve one’s health, wellbeing, self-esteem, and overall resilience. It is a way to get to know your real self, beyond mind, beyond emotion and beyond your past. The advantages are limitless.
Meditation can be Passive (eg, physically relaxing, closing one’s eyes, laying or sitting down) or Active (eg, being mindful whilst engaging in everyday activities, during exercise, or particularly in QiGong and Taiji Quan practice). Mindfulness Meditation is a great opportunity to experience a range of scientifically researched and validated skills and techniques that can be easily incorporated in your daily life. Put simply, ‘Mindfulness’ means “to be consciously aware of the present moment from a a non-judgmental perspective”. This is not something we are taught to practice in our culture, particularly the Western world, which focuses much more on what you are ‘becoming’ (future oriented). In contrast, mindfulness focuses on developing the appreciation of the present moment, for in truth it is the only moment that exists. Once one learns how to live mindfully, life becomes more vibrant, fulfilling and meaningful and there is a sense of aLIVEness and peace. It is a whole new way of living.
The Power of Meditation for the Martial Artist
Everything is energy and as such, we are simply particles of energy vibrating in a particular and unique way. Meditation provides a method for being ‘in the flow’ or in bringing oneself back into balance. There are many different types and styles of meditation and the key is to have a regular daily practice and to make progress. Meditation is essential for whole mind – body – emotion balance. Meditation has been scientifically shown to reduce stress, emotionality, intrusive thoughts and increase mental clarity focus and speed as well as producing a sense of peace and relaxation. It has been shown to enhance confidence, self-awareness and physical energy. All of these elements are critical for the Martial Artist.