Of course, one of the most obvious benefits of Martial Arts for kids is that it includes a physical activity component. Not only will your child move around a lot, but they’ll also build on their strength and flexibility.
Learning new skills increases children’s confidence and self-esteem. They’ll also need to work together with other students in the class and even perform their skills in front of people during grading or special events.
Most types of Martial Arts have a belt or ranking system that children work through, meaning they are rewarded for their practice and mastery of skills. Focusing on a goal such as achieving a new rank or belt is a great way to learn about goal-setting and motivation.
Respecting your instructor or teacher is an important part of Martial Arts. Children will need to listen to and follow instructions in order to learn new moves and skills.
While Martial Arts is typically done as an individual, team work is still a vital part of practice. Working in pairs is often used to teach sparring or to work on moves. Being part of a club also creates a sense of belonging and creates lifelong friendships.
If you have a child who likes to punch, kick, roll or wrestle, Martial Arts offers a safe environment in which to do it. Children learn how to punch bags, how to land safely if they fall backwards and how to block someone else’s punches or kicks. It’s much safer than practising on their siblings on the lounge room floor!
You might think that Martial Arts is about fighting but it’s quite the opposite in most cases. Many Martial Arts styles focus on self-defence and don’t allow fighting between students until they are older and have more advanced skills. The ultimate aim of Martial Arts is to teach children peaceful, non-violent conflict resolution skills and to help them work out ways to avoid physical altercations. Martial Arts has a lot to offer children. It gets them active and teaches them to be confident, peaceful and focused. Plus, if your child grows to love it, they can continue practising into adulthood where they will still reap many of the same benefits.