For the instructors at Seigler's Karate Center, martial arts is about more than drilling strikes and forceful take-downs; it's about building confidence. With that philosophy in mind, the team aims to help people of all ages—from preschooler to retiree—overcome "I quit" attitudes with lessons emphasizing self-discipline and empathy. They exemplify martial arts' fat-burning benefits with cardio-kickboxing classes, focused workouts designed to shrink jean sizes while instilling self-defense techniques in students.
Tami, a trainer at North Augusta Martial Arts, leads groups through high-energy boot-camp sessions that quickly burn away calories. In addition to encouraging slimmer, svelter physiques, the classes improve cardiovascular health and endurance.
Columbia Martial Arts and Fitness provides a wealth of martial-arts knowledge at its spacious studio. Adult programs train students in everything from Brazilian jujitsu and MMA to combat submission wrestling and Bruce Lee's legendary jeet kune do. Youth programs begin with martial-art fundamentals and work to build self-confidence and teach self-defense.
To weather his career as a master sergeant and a decorated Special Forces combat veteran, Shihan Randy McElwee needed a solid grasp on combat maneuvers. Nowadays, the retired McElwee teaches the pragmatic self-defense skills that got him through battle at his martial-arts studio, American Black Belt Academy. The school specializes in the official hand-to-hand combat system of the US military: Gracie Brazilian jujitsu. The system’s standing and ground moves harness leverage to take on larger opponents as well as help participants neutralize surprise attacks. For a broader focus, students can opt for an integrated martial-arts fitness workout, which combines jujitsu with muay thai kickboxing and Japanese shotokan karate. Regardless of their specificity, all of the studio’s classes enhance focus, self-confidence, and courage when the laundry room’s light goes out.