The Power of Martial Arts to Overcome the Past

“Martial arts provides a certain type of therapy that even psychologists can’t offer.”

Great post, Abigail! I’m finding this to be true for me with Jiu-Jitsu, and I’m only two weeks in!

The Guerreiras

“Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that’s triggered by a terrifying event — either experiencing it or witnessing it. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event” (Mayo Clinic).

For years, I was a runner – no, not the kind that does marathons and wears cute neon-colored tennis shoes. My running didn’t actually get me anywhere. Sure, my body would work incredibly hard – I would breathe faster, my heart would beat faster, my blood pressure would rise, I would sweat, I would shake, my muscles would tense up… but my feet didn’t actually take me anywhere. You’ve probably heard of the fight-or-flight system – my body preferred flight. My version of running involved me sitting on the cold tile in the corner of my bathroom floor, reliving events in my life that my body so desperately wanted to…

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