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Open AccessArticle

Selected Healthy Behaviors and Quality of Life in People Who Practice Combat Sports and Martial Arts

1
Department of Physical Culture and Health Promotion, University of Szczecin, 71-004 Szczecin, Poland
2
Faculty of Physical Education, Health and Tourism, Kazimierz Wielki University in Bydgoszcz, 85-064 Bydgoszcz, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(5), 875; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16050875
Received: 20 January 2019 / Revised: 4 March 2019 / Accepted: 7 March 2019 / Published: 10 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health, Exercise and Sports Performance)
Background: The quality of life of a society is conditioned by many factors, and depends, among other things, on preferred behavior patterns. Combat sports (CS) and martial arts (MA) have a special educational potential in the area of shaping positive behavior patterns and transmitting moral values which could help reduce aggression in society. The aim of the work was to determine the relationship between health behaviors and the quality of life of people who practice combat sports and martial arts (CS and MA) recreationally, in addition to practicing other sports, and as competitors at the master level. Methods: The research embraced 543 people who practice combat sports and martial arts. Three groups were selected: recreational (n = 362), people who reconciled practicing various sports (n = 115), and competitors who practiced combat sports or martial arts at the master level (n = 66). The average age of the respondents was 24.49 ± 7.82. The standardized WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire and another questionnaire for a lifestyle survey were applied. The Kruskal-Wallis test was used to compare several independent samples. In the case of determining statistical significance of differences the Mann-Whitney test was employed, and for the qualitative data analyses the trait frequency and the independence chi-square test were used. The effect size was calculated for each test ( E R 2 , rg, Cramér’s V). The value of p ≤ 0.05 was assumed to be statistically significant. Results: The highest quality of life (in the physical, psychological and environmental domains) was characteristic of the competitors, who practiced only combat sports and martial arts. They also displayed the most health-oriented behaviors. The surprising results were: lower quality of life in the assessment of nondrinkers and nonsmokers, and higher among people who were overweight. Conclusions: We have found positive correlations between practicing CS and MA, health behaviours and higher scores in quality of life self-evaluation, particularly where practitioners are exclusively focused on CS and MA and practice these at a competitive level. Our findings thus support the growing evidence that competitive level CS and MA are an effective means of improving people’s quality of life. Future research needs to clarify whether CS and MA can also be recommended to recreational and non-competitive practitioners as a means to improve their subjective quality of life. View Full-Text
Keywords: healthy behaviors; quality of life; combat sports and martial arts; WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire healthy behaviors; quality of life; combat sports and martial arts; WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire
MDPI and ACS Style

Kotarska, K.; Nowak, L.; Szark-Eckardt, M.; Nowak, M. Selected Healthy Behaviors and Quality of Life in People Who Practice Combat Sports and Martial Arts. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 875.

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