I am looking at improving my cardio work outs and am looking at running -- not a shocker so far. However, I am interested in the most time efficient way to improve cardio and avoid injuring myself in the short and long term.

Would such a question be on or off topic? How to make sure it does not get closed?

7 Answers 7


Running an jogging are issues of physical fitness, not martial arts. We have a site for that: http://fitness.stackexchange.com.

Certainly, a sound mind and healthy body are important to martial arts, but that does not make any activity associated with achieving that a subject of "Martial Arts."

This is a bit like the "programmer's favorite softdrink" problem of Stack Overflow:

  • How do I prevent running injuries… for martial arts?"
  • How do I lose weight… for martial arts?"
  • How do I get enough sleep… for martial arts?"
  • What is a good energy snack… for martial arts?"

Conceivably, if you need an exercise technique that is very specific to martial arts, the experts are right here. But this site is for questions about activities that are traditionally part of practicing the martial arts, not general wellness.


Offtopic. It may be indirectly related to Martial Arts in that running will increase your physical fitness, but in that regard it belongs on Fitness/Nutrition.SO.

EDIT: Now, questions such as "How can I change my running style to increase my [balance,speed,concentration,etc]" would be on-topic. General running questions don't seem like they are to me though.

  • 1
    Advice on running would be off-topic I agree. Should I run to improve my cardio for MA is very on-topic. Commented Feb 1, 2012 at 16:11
  • Further, some arts (Such as Systema) do include methods of running in a relaxed method to allow the practitioner to run further with less fatigue. In this case, I feel it would certainly be on-topic. You could also look at it from the point of view of the teaching of self-defense, inasmuch as escaping involves running... Just to play devil's advocate...
    – stslavik
    Commented Feb 1, 2012 at 17:19
  • Absolutely! And those sound like on-topic Q's to me too. As long as it somehow ties into a specific martial art subject, no reason it shouldn't be asked. But if it's a beginning runner who just wants to learn how to run, they're probably better suited Fitness.SE.
    – BenCole
    Commented Feb 1, 2012 at 17:45
  • I'd say that asking about "Systema's method of running" and asking specific questions pertinent to anything unique about their method would absolutely be on topic, but that pretty much all more general running questions are almost certainly going to be "off topic." Commented Feb 2, 2012 at 8:53

For me, definitely off topic. It doesn't matter why you are running, simply that it is only tangentially related to your martial arts training means it is off topic, and definitely too localised. Is there an SE site for running/jogging?

And martial artists don't run unless they have to. They stand and fight :)

  • 5
    There were two men in Africa a while back. They were in the jungle and heard some noise in a bush. One went to investigate, the other ran away. We are all descendent from the one that ran away. ^_~ Commented Feb 1, 2012 at 12:16
  • But sometimes you have to run after the bad guys once they've realized you're going to fight back! Commented Feb 1, 2012 at 16:12
  • "Is there an SE site for running/jogging?" There's Fitness.SE, which is probably a better spot to get answers about running in general anyways. Commented Feb 2, 2012 at 15:52

I'd think it was definitely on topic. There are reasons in martial arts to use running to develop physically in certain ways, and ways to run, and not to run. There are also exercises when combined with running that help to improve cardio more rapidly- many of them that I've only seen in martial arts dojos and was surprised to see in practice.


This is a tough one - but since I would look up advice on how to run in a martial arts forum such as this one, I would accept that question.


I would have to go with Robert Cartaino's answer. If running or jugging is a prerequisite or integral part of the martial art you are asking about (as an application of techniques or movements), I would say it is on-topic.

In the context of your original question and this corresponding meta question here, the relation sounds rather loose. You don't need to jog or run to improve your level of expertise in martial arts. It helps, but you will also develop naturally based on what the system or style entails. You're asking more about running and jogging than aikido (and then generalize the question to all martial arts) so in this case, I'd say the question is off-topic.

Note: I'm a mod for the Fitness & Nutrition SE. I'm not trying to plug the site or detract from Martial Arts. I'm just voicing an opinion on what I think is best for the Martial Arts site.


For my way of thinking it's absolutely on topic. This is a question about whether a specific kind of exercise will help their martial arts training. Now, advice on running, after they've decided to do it, would be off-topic and best asked elsewhere.

As for the answer I'd give: I hate running, but hill sprints are good. I use kettlebell swings these days for my cardio and they get me sucking air like it's going out of fashion, so I recommend those more than running.

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