How Martial Arts Helps In Teaching Discipline (Jason Maine)

How Martial Arts Helps In Teaching Discipline (Jason Maine) by Charles Sledge

This is a guest post from Jason Maine of Full Contact Way a site dedicated to martial arts and martial arts equipment. In this article Jason talks about how martial arts help in teaching discipline a much needed trait and one that is lacking in this day and age of instant gratification and taking the easy way. Enjoy.

When you train in martial arts, the benefits you can reap are almost endless. Discovering new fighting techniques, especially to be used for self-defense, is high up on the list of reasons why people practice the fighting arts. There is a more considerable advantage though that a practitioner should seek to achieve: self-discipline.

It is important for one to build discipline. Discipline is a sign of inner strength, of living a healthier life, and generally having a greater sense of self-control. It is a trait that can help you preserve through anything that comes your way and enables you to actually follow through with your goals.

How do martial arts come into play here then? Let’s break down some of the ways the arts help instill lasting discipline so you can feel healthier, mentally and physically stronger, and accomplish more.

The Value of Respect

From the moment you enter your first martial arts lesson, the importance placed on respect is staggering. Your instructors not only prioritize valuing them and your peers, but respecting the art itself. They even place an emphasis on helping you view yourself in higher esteem as well. What is even more important is honoring these values.

By creating an atmosphere of respect, you are also engulfing yourself in an air of discipline. You learn to appreciate the traditions, the history, and everyone else involved in the class. Those that show little awareness tend to face consequences. These consequences are as much about punishment as it is a learning experience. You better your discipline through understanding that you have to be serious if you want to succeed.

Focus is Key

Someone who has proper discipline is not so easily distracted. In martial arts, there is no room for distractions of any kind. Through the help from instructors, you learn to eliminate interruptions and place all of your attention on your training. It is the only way you can master new techniques.

This readily translates to other areas in your life. Life will always throw challenges to set you off your path. Martial arts can help you gain some newfound focus. You become better able to resist temptations and overcome any diversions.

Structured Training

Learning martial arts is not something that happens by diving in whenever you want. There is a routine that you must follow in order to be successful. Not only should you attend class at the appropriate times to learn the moves properly, but you have to train in your own time as well.

One of the hardest lessons of discipline is consistency. Martial arts will force a structure in your life like nothing else. Tardiness is not rewarded in class, and skipping altogether has its own consequences, specifically with missing out on that lesson. It will show in your training, and that will be the driving force you need to push you to develop a healthier habit to improve your skills.

You can get rid of any procrastination traits you may have in addition to stomping out laziness for good. See yourself getting up early in the morning to exercise and take care of any other goals throughout the day.

Master Perseverance

If you want to truly become disciplined, you must develop unshakeable perseverance. You can’t be put off by strenuous tasks or hardships. A disciplined mind can work through any situation and come out stronger on the other side. It is another skill that martial arts can effectively develop.

When you begin your training, what you learn may seem simple at first. As you accomplish more, the training becomes taxing. You have to push past limits you may not have known you had. It may seem tempting to quit, but that is when you dig deep and pull up that perseverance.

Anytime things get tough, you bring up that inner strength to fight on. Even if you fail or meet a roadblock, you don’t give up; instead, you just try again.


Discipline is a necessity if you want to triumph in life. It is the cornerstone of self-control and focus, confidence, strength, and perseverance. By training in martial arts, you can develop and hone these fundamental traits and conquer anything in your path.

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Charles Sledge

  • I’m glad that I can share my experience with you.
    Hope that I encouraged some of you to try martial arts training.

    • Jason, what style(s) do you train in. My primary background is TKD (17 years), but also am training in Aikido, Jeet Kune Do, and Filipino Kali.
      Agree on your points how respect and consistency improve overall discipline. It’s a long process, but the results speak for themselves so long as you have quality instructors.

      • This is impressive!
        I trained judo some time ago and currently krav maga.
        I agree that the having the right instructor (or master) is the key. Unfortunately it is not always an easy task – many mc dojos appeared last years which are more interested in students money than their development.

        • I used to be an assistant instructor at what I would consider a McDojo by my “unrealistic standards.” Like cubicle work, it wears on the soul seeing people you know who shouldn’t be testing getting their black belts. Greatest move I ever made was leaving that school and focusing on being a student again.

          • I think that solid no belts of yellow belts are more skilled than mc black belts.

          • I think that’s a pretty fair assessment. Maybe green or blue belt.