Martial Arts like sports, music, video games… These are all beneficial activities in their own way. But martial arts for kids is about so much more than just physical movement. It’s about fitness with a purpose and helping your child become the absolute best version of themselves, inside and out. We gathered up our top 5 reasons why Levittown parents choose martial arts for kids- and some of them may surprise you, like #2! Read on to find out more.
Reason #1: Martial Arts For Kids Helps Kids Focus
Stepping outside of martial arts programs for a second, we can say with confidence that a lot of kids struggle with staying focused and concentrating. Some of it is, of course, just part of being a kid, some of it has to do with more screen time leading to less control over attention spans, and some of it is due to plain old genetics if attention issues run in the family.
The good news is that we’ve found that a lot of students who have attention problems actually benefit greatly from consistent martial arts classes. Why? Well, self-defense for kids is actually about way more than just punches and kicks. It’s a tool that people have been using for hundreds of years to develop character and build incredible life skills. Our instructors are like ninjas, sneaking in quick games and activities to build focus over time.
But aside from games, the act of martial arts itself requires discipline to do. To master the physical moves, kids need to be still, listen intently, and concentrate on what they’re doing. Once they’re able to get the moves down, our instructors use positive reinforcement to continually praise them for paying attention. Soon, the students understand the connection between receiving positive feedback and staying focused, and they focus better all on their own. This ultimately helps them achieve better grades and become more confident, which you’ll read about in Reasons 2 and 3. (Cool, right?)
Reason #2: Better Grades are Possible With Martial Arts For Kids
Did you know that martial arts classes can help your child get better grades? Here’s how it works: Through fun games in class and consistent practice of the martial arts moves, we teach them how to improve their focus and attention skills (we talked about this above in Reason #1). With this laser focus, our students start to become more “indestructible”- they have better control of their bodies and are able to pay attention more easily, meaning they squirm less in their seats in class and can focus up on the tasks at hand. Better focus leads to better listening, so they’re retaining the information better than ever before, and they can sit down to complete their assignments with a higher quality of concentration. AND, because they’re retaining more information, they’re able to recall better on tests and quizzes, they’re scoring higher because of this heightened recall, and voila- better grades! It really is that simple and it really does work!
Reason #3: Martial Arts is a Program that Builds Confidence
Every parent wants their child to be confident in themselves. But sometimes, group activities can lead to kids comparing themselves to others. If your child isn’t the most athletic, or they’re somewhat shy, it may be difficult to find classes for kids where they don’t have to worry about “letting the team down” or be self conscious in front of others.
What’s so awesome about martial arts is that it’s an individual sport in a group setting, so our students don’t have to worry about being the best of the best- they just have to focus on being better than they were yesterday. They learn how to compare themselves not necessarily to others, which can be a losing game… but to the previous versions of themselves in order to become the best versions of themselves they can be. In this way, our students can see in real time how awesome it feels to set goals and get goals, and they can understand the discipline and perseverance it takes to become successful. Those are skills they’ll take with them for the rest of their lives.
Another perk is that our students learn to be real cheerleaders for their peers and support each other whenever they need it. This is one of the best things about teaching martial arts for kids- seeing the way that our kids become friends and cheer each other on. For those who have low self-esteem or just feel down about themselves, getting that support from both their instructors and their peers is a gratifying and even life-changing experience.
Reason #4: Our Martial Arts Instructors are Positive Role Models For Kids
If you think about it, most classes for kids are about the end result- the show in Drama Club, the games in sports. This is where martial arts is the most different from other programs. “Winning” the belt ranking is not our sole focus. Because martial arts is an individual sport in a group setting, our instructors can hone in on each student and help them progress along their own unique journey. Our kids then begin to look to our instructors as positive role models- and our instructors are more than qualified to fill the role! They have dedicated their lives and careers to bonding with the kids and encouraging them through positive reinforcement, positive self-talk, and a focus on progress, not perfection.
The beauty of martial arts is that every black belt was once a beginner… so every instructor teaches with integrity. They know what it’s like to be frustrated or upset, but they also know how valuable it is to keep going! We always show our students how to get back up and keep going no matter what- AND how to stay humble no matter how far they progress. That sense of respect and discipline is not something you see in other group programs.
Reason #5: It’s just FUN!
The fifth reason is that martial arts for kids is just plain FUN! Our amazing instructors make each lesson fun and engaging. Our classes are all about non-stop activity. We break each class into different sections to keep kids interested and continually learning in these critical years of growth and development.
Fun activities and games also help our students connect fitness and positive emotion, a connection that they’ll carry with them for life. This big focus on fun is also a way for our instructors to sneak those life skills, like focus, confidence, and discipline, into each lesson. The kids don’t even know they’re learning something- they’re too busy having a blast!