Why martial arts?
Martial arts are disciplines that train the body in self-defense and combat, but the side effects of the training achieve a whole lot more.
Everything in martial arts involves physical activity in one form or another. Exercises like forms, foot work, stances, etc. set the body into great athletic shape and provide stability.
Stretching exercises are specifically designed to improve and increase power to kicks and punches with flexibility as an offshoot.
Regular practice of forms and fighting applications, using hand/feet combinations, results in superb coordination.
The teaching and drilling of power and balance points greatly improve balance.
Numerous techniques and exercises in the arts enhance spirituality. Learning calmness in highly emotional situations will render rational and precise reactions that also balance the soul. One technique, Chi Gong, uses various stances and breathing exercises to open the meridians and allow energy flow throughout the body, which in turn facilitates more power, control, and better health.
All exercises and techniques in martial arts automatically build strength. Strength building exercises like the long pole routine builds enormous endurance and muscle.
A huge byproduct of martial arts is gaining knowledge of the body; more knowledge effects better control of it and better control adds up to better performance.