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Kids and Martial Arts: The Truth

Nowadays violence is almost glamorised, through television shows and video games, while if you were asked to think of martial arts, many of us would immediately think of all those martial arts films going back to the 70s and beyond. Here, violence is held out as a solution to nearly every problem imaginable.

But this isn’t martial arts at all. What popular culture has done is to almost demonise what true martial arts are. It has detracted from the reality that martial arts are in fact great for kids, offering them all kinds of wonderful benefits.

Many think that buying a pair of kids boxing gloves, or Thai boxing gloves, and giving them to their children is a recipe for complete disaster and destruction. However, in the proper environment, under proper and professional tutelage, that purchase could be the start of something wonderful. It could be the start of your child’s Martial Arts journey. Here’s what you really need to know.

1.       Focused Discipline

The foundation of all Martial Arts is discipline. Kids are too easily spoilt, lack attention, and are readily distracted. Through Martial Arts they learn that progress is only made through a constant focus, self-restraint, and a dedication to discipline.

2.       Confidence

Do not confuse confidence with cockiness. Confidence is a quiet understanding of one’s own abilities and limitations, not an overinflated set of beliefs about one’s own talents. Your child’s confidence and self-esteem will grow as they work their way through the Martial Arts belts/grading system, achieving rewards through effort, whilst recognising that there are always many more things to learn. Practised in a mixed ability environment, children learn the extent of their abilities, whilst having goals and a focus to inspire the continuation of their hard work.

3.       Socialising

Kids will often find it hard to relate to others. However in a room full of dedicated students, all with common goals, and willing to share past experiences, the practice of Martial Arts will boost your child’s socialization skills no end. It is an ideal environment to be at one amongst your peers, all of whom are at differing stages of the same journey, and all of whom at one time, took the very first step to commit to Martial Arts.

4.       Respect and Listening

Many children simply do not listen, or do not want to. With Martial Arts, the upmost respect is show towards the Instructor, it is part of the belt/grading system, the hierarchy. This in turn instils a sense of respect for authority within the child, something that is sadly lacking. From this respect comes the desire to listen to everything that is said, a skill that can be used throughout life. This encourages a respect for all others, and for yourself, which in turn can help behavioural problems.

5.       Health

Martial Arts is physical, intense, exciting and exhilarating. It gets the heart racing, and promotes excellent physical and mental health. Many children do not get enough exercise, those that attend regular Martial Arts classes are definitely an exception – it is hard and physical but fun too.

6.       Non-Violent Solutions

Martial Arts teaches respect, encourages none violent solutions to all problems and scenarios, it instils discipline and self-control within the individual. Violence is often instigated by those that do not understand the physicality of their actions, not those that have studied the techniques and consequences of aggression. Those that study Martial Arts will have the confidence to stand up to danger and aggression and deal with it peacefully.

Martial Arts has many benefits, to physical and mental health, to the development of character, confidence, self-esteem and respect. Its benefits go beyond the training and into the wider World itself. By participating in Martial Arts, your children will become healthier, happier, more focused and more respectful, they will listen and they will learn. These are all things that we wish our children could achieve, and the truth is, they can.

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