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The Secret to My Success...

October 18, 2006
A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.

Well it’s not really a secret, but it was one of the driving forces that help me completely turn my life around and make a full recovery.

Remember it was just 5 short years ago, I was 40 lbs over weight and recovering from my third and most violent heart attack.

During my recovery time I tried a lot of different things to get back on my feet. But none of them had as big an impact on my life as my training in the martial arts. I’m really not sure where my life would be right now without them.

Since then they’ve become such an integral part of my daily life, I don’t even really consider the health benefits anymore. Even though they’re so numerous, it’s tough to over look them.

But I know what you’re thinking right now, you’re probably asking your self…sure they’re good but martial arts at my age? No Way!

Well I’m here to tell you with 100% certainty, absolutely YES, you can reap the amazing benefits the arts have to offer at any age!

A recent study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine showed that people in  their 40’s and 50’s who practice martial arts possessed amazing fitness levels as compared to people the same age that don’t.

On average the test subjects that trained in the arts had 12% less body fat, were able to do twice as many sit ups had more flexibility and leg strength, had better balance and a stronger immune system.

Not bad huh? But unfortunately a lot of the seniors I talk to in my daily travels are apprehensive about starting the martial arts so late in the game.

So today I thought I’d discuss 2 martial arts that are ideally suited for pretty much anyone of any age, and any fitness level. Even if you haven’t exercised in years, you’ll be able to jump right in head first.

Both offer all the same health benefits of the more combat oriented fighting styles, like Jiu-Jitsu (my style) and Karate. Without the hard core, Bruce Lee type beating you might be expecting to receive the second you walk in the place.


An ancient Chinese martial art that focuses on harnessing the body’s vital internal energy, also called Qi. Qigong has been practiced for centuries throughout China as an indispensable tool to promote good health, fast healing, spiritual development and longevity.

You probably won’t hear or read anything about Qigong from your doctor or any western medical texts. But in traditional Chinese medicine Qigong plays a huge role in promoting overall good health and healing.

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And on top of that Qigong is a potent form of self defense, but don’t let that scare you. The slow paced low impact training is perfect for seniors or anyone with a pre-existing medical condition (like arthritis) that would other wise keep them from training.

Tai Chi:

If you’re over 50 or haven’t made time to exercise in a while the ancient fighting art of Tai Chi should really appeal to you. Tai Chi’s primary focus is on slow methodical movement, breathing, self defense and different concentration exercises that teach you how to move the internal energy in your body.

By turning its focus to internal healing Tai Chi offers a broad range of health benefits, like improved balance, flexibility, posture, coordination, immune function and strength. And studies have shown that seniors who practice Tai Chi greatly reduce their risk of injury from falls.

But the best part about Tai Chi, just like Qigong, is you don’t have to be in good shape to get started. The majority of the students I’ve talked to that practice Tai Chi or Qigong were all well over 40, and a few were even in their 80’s!

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society even recommends Tai Chi practice for MS patients whose symptoms are so bad traditional exercise is no longer an option. How about that for low impact!

And the health benefits just can’t be overlooked, and as you can see, age is not a factor. So what are you waiting for?

Oh, and don’t forget one of the main benefits of taking part in any type of martial arts training is the self confidence you get from knowing how to defend yourself in a threatening satiation.

Hopefully you never need it, but it feels a lot better walking to you car at night knowing that if you had to you could out run or fight off a potential attacker.

So take a look around, and see what the schools in your area have to offer. Interview different instructor, take advantage of free trial classes and find the one that’s right for you.

And if you can’t find a school near by, you can check out your local community center or even the YMCA. Just don’t go beating up on all your friends once you start getting good!

Stay Healthy!

Doc Darville
NatureCast News

Important Note

All information presented in the NaureCast News is for informational purposes only. It is not meant as specific medical advice -- and any and all information presented in the NatureCast News should not be considered as medical advice or instruction. You should take no action on any advice contained here in. Readers are strongly advised to seek the advice of a certified health professional about any issues of health or well being. The opinions contained in the NatureCast News are believed to be sensible advice but can in no way meant to replace the advice of sound medical council.