Is Sparring A Good Way To Exercise? (Fighting as a Workout)

Exercise is incredibly important to maintaining our general health.

With it being so vital to ensuring we stay fit, many people are often confused about what is considered to be a good way to exercise. 

Is Sparring A Good Way To Exercise

Those who are new to exercising or those who prefer not to go to the gym to exercise might find the options available to them seem limited.

This can be especially true if you prefer not to exercise alone. 

Sparring is one activity that many people question how good of an exercise it is.

After all, sparring is commonly used to test your ability against an opponent in combat.

In this guide, we are going to take a deeper look into sparring and whether it is a good way to exercise. 

What Is Sparring?

Before we look at whether sparring is a good way to exercise, we need to understand what sparring is.

This will give us the foundation knowledge we need to have in order to fairly judge whether or not sparring is a good way to exercise. 

Sparring is part of the training that you do when learning a sport such as taekwondo, karate, boxing, and many of the different forms of martial arts. 

Sparring is when you practice the moves you have learned as part of your training.

It is a great way to see if you can apply the techniques properly during combat.

During sparring, you have a sparring partner. This is the person you practice both the defensive and attacking techniques. 

Sparring is not the same as fighting as you are not performing the movements and techniques with the same intensity as you would during a fight.

Instead, sparring is a less intense version of the fighting you would deliver in a competition.

The idea is not to injure your opponent but to test your ability. 

Sparring is incredibly important for martial arts as it helps you to determine the level you are at with your training.

It also helps you to improve your abilities without the risk of being injured. 

Sparring As A Form Of Exercise

In order to decide whether sparring is a good way to exercise, we need to take a closer look at the areas that sparring can impact.

Here is how sparring impacts your strength and cardio. 

Sparring And Cardio

In order to understand whether sparring is a good way to exercise, we need to look at the relationship between sparring and cardio.

Cardiovascular workouts are an important part of keeping fit.

Therefore, a good form of exercise needs to include cardiovascular workouts so you can improve your stamina. 

Before you jump into a sparring session, it is important that you have built up your endurance and have experience with other cardiovascular exercises.

This is because sparring is not something that beginners will find easy as it is still a high-intensity workout.

Without having your endurance developed, you will most likely feel tired very quickly. 

However, if you do have some experience with cardiovascular workouts, then sparring is a great way to exercise.

Sparring involves practicing your techniques for different rounds.

Each round is timed and there is a short break in between the rounds.

This means you’ll be developing your endurance as the rounds continue. 

Since the rests are not long enough for you to get your energy back, your heart rate will remain increased for a longer period of time.

This is why sparring is a good cardiovascular workout.

Not only will the lack of rest help build up your endurance, but during the sparring rounds, you will be exerting yourself.

Being able to perform the techniques with a partner also improves your endurance. 

The challenge of trying to fight your opponent and endure multiple rounds of sparring at the same time makes sparring a great cardiovascular workout. 

Is Sparring A Good Way To Exercise (1)

Sparring And Strength

Sparring is a great way to build your strength. Just as you have to endure being able to withstand all of the different rounds, you also have to be able to withstand your opponent. 

Combat sports are always a great way to improve your overall strength.

This is because repeated punches, kicks, and other strikes help to build your muscles and core strength.

Applying these techniques in a one-on-one situation with an opponent, helps you to improve your strength by working those muscles. 

An example of a combat sport where sparring will help to increase your strength is Muay Thai.

During Muay Thai training, those participating will find that their core strength is increased.

Muay Thai helps to strengthen the leg muscles, your glutes, and any muscles that help you to keep your balance. 

Since sparring is practicing all of the techniques you have learned that have already strengthened your muscles, it can be considered a full-body workout. 

When Is Sparring Not A Good Way To Exercise?

We have already established the areas in which sparring would be a good way to exercise, but we have not yet looked at when it would not be a good way to exercise. 

If you do not already have the techniques learned, then sparring is not a good way to exercise.

It is important to remember that sparring is part of the training process that tests your ability to apply the techniques you have already learned.

So if you are not familiar with those techniques, it would not be a good way to exercise. 

Another time sparring would not be considered a good way to exercise is if you are new to cardio workouts.

It is important to have developed your endurance before sparring, otherwise, you will become exhausted after a few rounds. 

Final Thoughts

Sparring is a good way to exercise if you have already learned the techniques of the combat sport and you have built up your endurance.

In these circumstances, sparring will help to develop your strength and endurance further. 

We hope this guide has answered all of your questions surrounding whether or not sparring is a good way to exercise.

Thank you for reading!

Christopher Anderson
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