Today’s world is dominated by a lot of things – fashion relationships, careers and so forth. But nothing surpasses the kind of attention that we give to pop culture music and movies. It’s what most youngsters are obsessed with today. Today’s culture is very intent on glorifying violence in different ways including movies, music and television shows. And while that’s the case, not any stop to think about how they can use it to their advantage. Consider for instance what it would mean to enroll a child in a martial arts class. The idea doesn’t sit well with many, probably you as well. That’s understandable because martial arts centered movies seem to be filled with scenes depicting gory injuries and violent behavior. But what if that’s not all there is to karate? What if martial arts could actually benefit your child? Hollywood films don’t get a lot of things right and martial arts is one of those things that are misunderstood. Karate isn’t a brutal, vicious activity that it’s painted to be. In many ways, martial art is beneficial to your child. Not convinced? Here is a look at some of the reasons your child should do martial arts.
Fostering Self Discipline
One of the central tenets of any form of martial arts is complete focus on self discipline. Children in today’s world are used to receiving instant gratification and this makes it hard to find ways to teach them how to develop self discipline and restraint. These two qualities are very important for any kid to succeed not only in future, but in their daily endeavors. Children with a martial arts background are constantly reminded of how important it is to have self discipline and with time, they learn to exercise it. By giving your child the opportunity to learn martial arts, you are also offering them the chance to acquire this important life skill.
Encouraging Physical Activity
It is the most obvious benefit of doing martial arts. In addition to being unfit, we are increasingly becoming overweight due to inactiveness. The problem would not be so bad if it didn’t relate to children. Unfortunately, it does. Today’s children would rather sit in front of the TV and play video games. Physical education and youth sports are great in curbing this problem. However, not every child is an athlete and many schools no longer offer physical education. Martial arts are a great pastime activity that is physically demanding. It discourages the sedentary lifestyle that a child is used to and inspires them to keep moving.
Increasing Self Esteem
Many kids today struggle with self-confidence and self esteem. They are afraid of bullies, older and bigger children intimidate them and they are afraid to venture into new territories and make achieve new things. Having your child do martial arts can help with that. Doing karate or any other form of karate and winning a white belt or another type of achievement will boost a child’s self-esteem immensely. They won’t feel intimidated and they can take on older children with confidence in class and during competition. Moreover, if a child achieves a task they deemed difficult in martial arts they’ll be motivated to take on more challenging tasks.
Encouraging Non-Violent Conflict Resolution
It’s understandable if everything you know about martial arts is confined to what you have learned from films – that it construes a violent behavior. Fortunately, you couldn’t be any further from the truth. Martial art is a skill set that teaches children how to solve conflicts without resorting to violence. It’s one of the first principles taught in class – that words are never grounds for a fight. That sentiment has saved many from disastrous fights. Martial arts teaches children various ways that they can sue to resolve conflicts more effectively while emphasizing the importance of avoiding physical altercation.
Improving Listening Skills
You can’t advance the different levels of martial arts or master the skills unless you have exemplary listening skills. It’s as simple as that. Listening skills are crucial in mastering karate. Once a child is enrolled in martial arts classes, one of the first skills they acquire is listening. While this will help them in the class, it will also come on handy in other aspects of their lives including education, careers, social lives and more. Kids who aren’t adept when it comes to paying attention can benefit from the verbal instruction that helps them improve their listening skills.
Boosting Socialization Skills
It is no secret that many children today struggle with making new friends or socializing with those around them. As such, they become withdrawn and trusting people is hard for them. Such children who find it difficult to cope in social environments can benefit from being in one place with peers that share a common interest. While the children at school may not have common ground, those devoted to martial arts can get to know one another through shared interests. Some forms of martial arts such as karate and jiu jitsu sometimes demand partnership and by building skills together, children can boost their socialization skills.
Developing Teamwork Skills
There are many things that a child will have to do on their own in a martial arts class including sparring in practice to master a new skill or breaking boards in order to earn another belt. But while this may be the case, a child will also be required to work in partnership with other children to learn new skills and achieve new goals. This serves as an important life lesson about the importance of teamwork; that there are things that we can’t achieve on our own. Martial arts teach children the importance of working with others to make better achievements and have more impact on what they do.
Learning to Set and Achieve Goals
High school certificates, college and university degrees as well as PHD’s are some of the symbols of the level of education one has. In the same way, the degree of skills one acquires in martial arts is based on an accomplishment system that consists of colored belts. By striving towards achieving a new belt, a child learns how to set and achieve goals. This skill comes in handy in other areas of life like careers, family, education and more.
Instilling a Sense of Respect
Like most forms of learning, martial arts requires a child to have unflinching respect for their instructor. Today’s culture doesn’t always demand a lot of respect for adults, those in advanced positions and certainly not the authorities. In addition to learning new skills and moves, martial arts instill respect in a child. They learn to respect not only those in authority, but those they work with as well.
Improvement in Other Areas of Life
The benefits of martial arts for your kid don’t end in dojo. They help boost confidence, foster a sense of respect, instill teamwork skills, increase physical activity and instill cooperation skills. Collectively, these help a child navigate every aspect of their lives including social and academic. Martial arts positively impact a child’s life and helps mold them into respectable adults.
What martial art is, it’s not important. The important thing is understand regardless of whether it’s karate or not, martial arts can benefit your child. The challenge is to find a good teacher or instructor. Your child needs the above benefits so give him the chance and enroll him in a martial arts program.