Combat sports are known for teaching discipline, building muscle, and developing excellent cardiovascular health. The competitive nature of combat sports can help keep you motivated as well. However, as with any sport, you should always do your homework to know exactly what you are getting yourself into. Here are some things you should know before signing up.

Know the Rules

Combat sports are known for their complicated rules and procedures, and each one is different. Before participating, you are obligated to understand the rules. Because rules are there for everyone’s protection, failure to do so can lead to serious injuries for both yourself and your opponent. Rules are important in any sport, but in combat sports they can be a matter of life or death. Knowing and following the rules shows that you care about safety and good sportsmanship.

Wear the Right Gear

Protective gear is critical in combat sports. Because the nature of the game is physical contact, protective gear is there to protect you and your opponent from sustaining serious or life-threatening injuries. Some examples of protective gear in combat sports are padded gloves, jock straps, safety mats, protective eyewear, and mouth guards. Mouth guards can save your teeth in sports such as MMA and Boxing. Knocked out teeth is a dental emergency that you need to seek immediate care for, so it’s best to avoid that necessity.

Learn the Risks

As with any sport, you should know what risks are common to combat sports. Injuries that are frequently associated with combative sports are broken bones, strained muscles, torn ligaments, hand injuries, eyebrow gashes, and knocked out teeth. Head injuries are also possible, from cuts and black eyes to concussions. You can reduce your risk of injury by stretching and warming up properly, using appropriate protective gear, and closely adhering to the rules. No sport is worth serious injury, so tap out when you are feeling overly strained. You also don’t want to be the cause of someone else getting hurt, so play fair.

Participating in combat sports can be an enjoyable and competitive way to stay active, make friends, develop greater discipline, learn a new skill, and build your character. There are many options available, so do some research and decide which sport is best suited to you. After that, all that is left to do is get your gear, sign up, and go have fun!

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