2019, Volume 15
Perception of health by combat sports athletes
Karol Görner1, Cezary Kuśnierz2, Paweł Fryderyk Nowak2
1Philosophical Faculty, Matej Bel University, Banská Bystrica, Slovak Republic
2Faculty of Physical Education and Physiotherapy, Opole University of Technology, Opole, Poland
Author for correspondence: Paweł Fryderyk Nowak; Faculty of Physical Education and Physiotherapy, Opole University of Technology, Opole, Poland; email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Background and Study Aim: In social opinion, martial arts with their centuries-old traditions are considered carriers of numerous desirable values, and in Eastern societies, they have been functioning for many years as effective educational systems for children and youth. The aim of the study is knowledge about perception of health by practitioners of different combat sports, considering their gender, competitive experience, and degree of competence.
Materials and Methods: The study was carried out in a group of 101 judo practitioners and 122 karate practitioners. A standardized research tool – an anonymous questionnaire – was used to evaluate the perception of health.
Results: Practitioners presenting different combat sports perceive health in different ways: in biomedical terms by judo athletes, and holistic terms by karate practitioners. For the latter health is associated with physical fitness (21.3%), good results of laboratory tests (15.6%), and inner peace (12.3%). On the other hand, the highest percentage of judo practitioners (24.8%) indicated good results of laboratory tests, followed by physical fitness (19.8%) and proper body weight (11.5%) as the dominant associations with health.
Conclusions: Trainers can influence combat sports and martial arts athletes through their educational activities as well as affect the holistic perception of and care for health, which in turn can translate into better sports results. Moving away from traditional values of combat sports and martial arts towards athleticization results in an unfavourable, biomedical, perception of health by competitors.
Key words: moral education, karate, judo, control emotions, prevent aggression, self-esteem