Why Should I Consider This?

Despite what you may have seen in the movies, martial arts are not merely a method of fighting. Although that is certainly a part of it, these arts have many other benefits as well. In ancient times, many societies found that it was good to teach their young people the skills of war, even if they did not expect those children to fight in a war.. Why is that, you might ask? Were they just crazy and sadistic? 

The answer is no. Ancient societies found that the process of martial training provided young people with a good way to learn self-control in a structured and stimulating environment, while at the same time learning skills that could be very valuable later on if they needed to defend themselves or their loved ones. With this approach in mind, here are our top five reasons to enroll your child in martial arts training. 

1. Discipline: 
It would be very hard to deny that children need firm discipline. However, society has moved away from the kinds of harsh measures that were often employed in the past. The fighting arts can provide a great alternative. 

The martial arts are all about the achievement of perfect self-control. For instance, when a certain technique is to be applied, proper body control is necessary in order to make it work. The student will naturally want to be successful in the arts, but this can only be accomplished through disciplined training. This means that success and failure both act as reinforcement, teaching children the benefit of good discipline. 

Because of this, the student is naturally motivated to do as they are instructed. They learn that proper performance brings success, and lack of effort will only bring failure. Even if a child doesn’t take orders very well, they will still have the same desire to succeed that everyone has. A good instructor knows how to use this process as a way to channel aggression into well-controlled prowess. 

2. Self-Defense: 
Most parents do not want their children to be exposed to violence, but the unfortunate fact is that you cannot shield them forever. Sooner or later, they will probably have to confront the fact that we live in a world that is sometimes violent and unpredictable. If and when this occurs, your children most certainly need to know what to do. 

If you want to emphasize the self-defense aspect of the arts in your child’s training, then you should look at styles that are not used for sport-fighting. There is nothing wrong with Judo or Taekwondo, but these styles are mostly used in the ring. The competitive aspect of these styles make them great for building personal toughness and other virtues, but their self-defense approach is likely to be less realistic. 

When teaching children, a good self-defense teacher should always emphasize escape as the main priority. For a child who is being attacked or pursued, this should always be the main priority. A child cannot normally be expected to overpower an adult (though it certainly isn’t impossible), so a good instructor should teach their students to seek escape above all. 

3. Confidence: 
If your child lacks in confidence, one of the sport-fighting arts would be a great choice for them. By giving the child a chance to engage in physical combat, you give them a chance to learn many beneficial lessons. At the same time, they learn what it means to struggle for victory and to attain it. Nothing can boost a child’s confidence quite like winning, especially in a one-on-one contest. 

Of course, you should take care and make sure that all of this is happening in a controlled environment with competent people overseeing the whole thing. Proper protective equipment should always be used. While I firmly believe that controlled fighting is good for children, it must be done in the right way to avoid injury. 

Children who are being bullied in school may be inclined to constantly back down from others simply because they don’t know how to handle a physical conflict. As such, the threat of physical conflict causes them to freeze up. The fighting arts can give a child the opportunity to get over the fear of conflict in a controlled and safe environment. 

4. Cooperation: 
Although the arts of combat are not usually team events, they do usually involve a lot of interaction with your training partners. Every training hall has a certain social aspect to it, just like any other group of people. As such, inclusion in a good dojo can help a child to improve their interpersonal skills. For children who are withdrawn and private, this is especially good. You don’t really have the option of being antisocial in a dojo since training often depends on good communication and mutual respect. 

Most styles will also involve the repetition of techniques as part of a group. This will often take the form of drills in which the students line up and perform various techniques while moving up and down the line. This is just one example, of course, but it’s a good example of how these arts can build good teamwork and the ability to work well with others. 

5. Increased Health: 
It would be hard to overstate the importance of good exercise. Even though young children don’t usually have to worry as much about their health, it is never too early to start building good habits. A regular program of exercise can do a lot to help your child maintain a healthy body. The strenuous physical exercise of a regular class will help to keep them from becoming overweight and aid the development of various organs. 

Good exercise habits will benefit the mind as well. The following study found that regular exercise actually improved memory in young adults. The study specified “aerobic exercise,” and that’s interesting to us because a martial workout is usually quite aerobic.