The following is a guest post, see the bio at the bottom for more information.
What Every Prepared Martial Artist Needs in Their Workout Bag
by John Alba
Martial Arts is one of the most physically demanding sports on the planet. Numbering over 18.1 million in 2015 alone, martial artists are no longer a rarity. It is not uncommon for a novice to hold more knowledge about slamming someone into the dirt than any average Joe out there.
That being said, they are almost never caught without their workout bag; it has the essentials that every single martial artist needs, no matter what school or art they practice. When heading to your dojo or gym, whether you are a male or female, young or old; a workout bag is never far from reach.
Typically these types of bags are seldom ever used for more than just working out. The name “work out bag” stipulates its use very well. But to those in a survival mindset, this is yet another facet of preparing for an emergency situation or end of the world.
So instead of simply using your workout bag for your martial art, why not change your work out bag, into a bug out bag? With a few modifications, any type of workout or martial art bag, into something that can very well save you and your loved ones live.
Are there special items that I should pack?
An average workout bag for a martial artist varies depending on the martial art they are practicing. For example, people who study and practice Muay Thai might bring boxing gloves, hand wraps, and ointments to help with aches and bruises. While a Krav Maga practitioner may have a different set of gear and apparel. Depending on the items needed for your specific martial art, more often than not they will help you more than hinder.
While these items might not be the forefront of any standard prepper checklist, they still carry many uses for survival.
What modifications should be made?
The goal of modifying your bag is to ensure every item you have packed can help you if an emergency situation arrives. Surprisingly, just by being prepared to go out and practice your martial art, you’ve given yourself a higher chance of survival.
A bottle of water is always a must have, as it is very easy to refill and reuse. Having a bottle that filters the water you drink would be even better, as it eliminates the possibility of illness and contamination.
3 changes of clothes could be ideal, as this will ensure you have clothes in an emergency and enable you to have a 1-day cushion to clean them. A first aid kit would also be incredibly important, as a standard kit can deal with most cuts and bruises with little issue.
As for the more general use, no bug out bag should go without a knife. Having a knife gives you an edge in self-defense, the ability to skin and dress animals for food, to cut through branches, and start a fire if necessary.
Speaking of which, a fire starter is also invaluable. If you stay long enough in the open without warmth, you can begin to have issues with your health due to exposure. Be sure to keep in mind to have a compass, as it will allow you to catch your bearing wherever you may be if you were to stray off the beaten path.
This is also not the end of your choices; depending on your individual needs and necessities, there are other things that can be put into your custom martial art bug out bag.
What kind of bag works well for the Martial Artist prepper.
While there is no “perfect” choice in picking a workout/bug out bag it is worth noting your own preferences and what might be necessary for you.
Having a large bag that has tons of pockets would seem ideal but it might not be the best choice for a bug out bag. Keep in mind; you have to imagine an emergency situation with this bag. Think as if you were going to bug out or even walk with it. In this instance, it would be needlessly cumbersome.
Something that is both accommodating but still compact would be the best choice. Such as a backpack, something that has a lot of pockets but is still very light and compact. This bag choice ensures that you can have the maximum amount of mobility, without sacrificing efficiency.
Be sure to keep away from duffle bags as they tend to become bulky as time goes on. Remember, you will be walking for long periods of time, and duffels tend to put a lot of weight on your shoulder. Not to mention most duffels are not built for heavy duty loads.
The truth about a disaster is that it can happen almost anytime, anywhere. There is no real way to prepare yourself, except making use of the items you have on hand. Having a bug out bag that is also built into a something you use every day is always better than nothing. Think about your routine, take note on where you might find yourself lacking if a sudden emergency situation occurred and try to plug the hole. This could mean the difference between becoming a survival or a casualty.
John Alba is a research expert on survivalism and emergency preparedness. He has been featured in such publications as the Journal of Civil Defense. For more survival and emergency preparedness tips, go to www.aboblist.com.