In all physical sports out there athletes have to pay attention to three key elements if they want to succeed: technical, physical and mental. I didn’t place them in any particular order here as in my personal opinion I think they are all equally important in terms of reaching success. While in team sports the mental game may be a bit easier since you’ve got a lot of teammates on the field to support you and cheer you up, in martial arts it is a bit different.
When you are facing an opponent mental toughness may sometimes play an even more important role than your technical knowledge, practice and strength. This is why I have put together this list of some tips that can help you improve your mental game and develop that warrior state of mind.
If you want to improve your mental game in any discipline you definitely have to have the will and energy to see the things through. Broken promises sting the most if they are the ones that we have promised to ourselves. This is why you need to make a commitment and set many goals so that you can track your progress.
There will be days when you will feel down, when training will be the last thing on your mind. But if you made a commitment it will be much easier for you to endure this challenges and stick to your regime. This is why here at Integrated Combat Centre in Sydney, we try to help everyone who wants to enter the world of martial arts by providing a fun, safe, friendly and supportive environment.
This is very important step on your road to becoming a mental strongman. If you don’t believe in yourself who will? Think about all the countless hours spent in the gym and on the mat, training, practicing, pouring sweat like crazy, being in pain. By increasing your level of self-confidence it will be much easier for you to imagine yourself winning. If you pull this off, and manage to win in your head, there is a much greater chance that you will too in a real situation.
On the other hand, be ready to lose, because it is also a real possibility. Imagine yourself in such a situation. Martial arts fighters take a lot of pride in what they are doing. That’s completely normal. But that mindset is what can lead to giving in or giving up after losing a match or not making any progress during training. Realizing that losing is part of the game can open up your mind for the life outside of your martial art and can also help you identify your weaknesses.
To be able to make serious progress while training and give your best during matches you have to empty your mind and have an incredibly sharp mental focus. The only thoughts that count are the ones that are closely related to your training. Training your body while neglecting your brain won’t get you anywhere. Tomorrow, while you are in a professional competition setting there will be a lot of things going around you, but you need to be able to clearly see your opponent and your thoughts.
This is why learning how to center yourself, no matter what is going on around you, is as important as any technique, workout or cardio. The technique that is really helpful in achieving progress and keeping your focus at all times is visualization. This psychological technique is very powerful and it consists of a person imagining him/herself at their best. This can be applied to various situations, for instance, excelling in situations where your weaknesses are most exposed, escaping a grappling move etc.
As you can see, working on your mental game is something that takes time and effort, just like learning martial arts techniques and building up strength. Fortunately, sports psychology is not a new field and there are many experts in the field that are both active bloggers and have a strong social media presence. So if you want to expand your knowledge on this topic, feel free to look up a few experts online and find a few useful books.
Give our BJJ program a go and experience the improvements to all of these fields. It is considered to be an excellent first style where the skills are easily transferable.
"Attending a martial arts gym as an "older" novice student can be quite daunting. I found ICC had a very professional and welcoming atmosphere. Having attended other martial arts gyms over the years its great to attend one where ego is left at the door and all students are treated with respect, be it the novice who takes the plunge to learn a martial art all the way through to the high level competitors. In conjunction with the atmosphere having highly technical and detailed instruction by Professor David and Steven make learning really enjoyable. Fantastic place to learn and train."
"i just wanted to say how impressed i am with ICC. You guys run a great show. All your students are respectful and courteous. I am very impressed and pleased with the way Mario and his team run their classed He keeps the class engaged in a strict but fun way. Teaching techniques but also how to be a good person too. To have respect for others and yourself... keep up the great work. The kids are really benefiting from it."
"As someone who was completely new to BJJ, when I first entered ICC I discovered a gym with high quality teaching and a friendly culture. Every student was friendly, welcoming and helpful which is a reflection head instructors David and Steven Tong.At ICC you can train to suit your interests whether its for fun, fitness, self-defense or competition. My only regret is not starting sooner."
"I've trained with a few martial arts instructors before and i have to say Mario is one of the best i've trained with. He clearly knows what he's talking about and has a great teaching style that is both serious and light hearted at the same time, which was exactly what i was looking for in a club. In the adult classes they aren't too strict with the traditional rules (which is a nice change) and focus more on effective techniques. Ann-Marie and the rest of the black belts also help to make sure each individual is getting as much attention as possible in each class, which really helps to accelerate your learning.I did both karate and kickboxing and recommend both - karate for the the focus on technique/self defence and kickboxing for smashing pads and fitness. Also, both my kids also love training at ICC - it's really helping with their confidence.David and the entire ICC team also do a great job of managing the club. It's been an overwhelmingly positive experience from day 1."
"I am proud to be a part of this amazing martial arts center. The trainers truly understand every strength n weakness in student’s n always motivates to develop for the best."