Given the fact that we would happily take a bullet for our kids, how can we ignore their personal welfare? If you are intuitively looking for a new activity for your kids, why not try martial arts? Maybe, you think that martial art is not right up their alley at the moment. So, you might be thinking of doing the more appropriate thing such as enrolling them in a drawing or art class. Perhaps, nothing else is making more sense to you.
Well, there’s nothing wrong with following the predefined path, but being a dedicated average-thinker does not always help. After all, the benefits of martial arts can easily outweigh the benefits of any other indoor activity out there. Moreover, you don’t need muscular little Bruce Lee’s in your house to help them get started. No matter how weak or less-agile your kids are, they don’t deserve to cling on this fact for the rest of their lives. As they say, everybody needs to start somewhere. So, let’s take a look at some martial arts that your kids can try.
Karate is one of the most recognized forms of martial arts. Most of us have grown up watching Bruce Lee’s movies. Isn’t it? Maybe, you must have watched some kick-a** karate moves in some other movies or in personal life. Anyways, hope you were never on the receiving end of those brutal kicks or punches. Oh! They really hurt like crazy. Karate is basically a Japanese martial art that involves quick and sharp movements such as kicks and punches.
Now, don’t get the whole plot wrong. The training is not advocated to promote violence. It’s meant to keep students self-assured. Kids also learn how to defend themselves, when the need arises. In a karate class, instructors teach and prioritize the art of blocking. So, it’s not about kicking someone’s a** for no reason. Not to forget the fact that karate also provides kids with a healthy dose of confidence and self-esteem. Given the enormous physical need of moving around, karate can do a world of good to your kid’s physical development, and of course, mental development too.
Pretty much, any style of martial art focuses on self-defense, including Judo. A skilled Judo kid is an unlikely target for bullies. After all, judo builds immense fight back confidence. Again, the mantra is not to find opponents to fight. But, Judo gives them the power to defend and the confidence to fight back. Moreover, Judo isn’t all about brute force. It’s all about control. A student is taught how to leverage the opponent body’s against him/her.
Practically speaking, the benefits of Judo explode past the boundaries of a traditional sport. In a Judo class, the emphasis is placed on improving physical fitness, focus, balance, discipline, confidence, coordination, social skills, and situational awareness. So, one can expect an all-round development of a kid by enrolling him/her in a Judo class. Most of these life skills will help them throughout their lifetime. Believe it or not, kids can start Judo classes at a tender age of four years.
- Kung Fu
Kung Fu is a 2000-year-old art that has been developed by the Chinese over the years. It involves a serious of different fighting styles. Now, don’t go by what the movies tell you. Kung Fu did not originate from the Shaolin Temple. Some evidence suggests that Kung Fu existed even before the Shaolin Temple was built. Nevertheless, this is not a history chapter. So, we won’t dig deep into the origination of Kung Fu. But, here’s what you should know. The term ‘kung fu’ itself means ‘achievement through great effort.’
Kung Fu can literally prepare your kids for success because it involves intellectual development, emotional development, social development, and physical development as well. Loads of parents have reported a change in the behavior of kids once the kids started attending Kung Fu classes. Punching, blocking, kicking are all a part of the engaging activities that can make your kid strong and fit at the same time. Moreover, Kung Fu blesses one with a great deal of patience, focus, confidence, and concentration, which will help kids in other areas of life as well.
- T’ai Chi
For hundreds of years, the Chinese have been using breathing and flowing movements to derive physical and mental benefits. People across the globe have been embracing T’ai Chi like never before. While some practice it for good health, others use it as a form of martial art for self-defense. If you follow MMA (mixed martial arts) closely, you will find several practitioners of T’ai Chi in the MMA field. They incorporate it in their training regime to get better at their sports.
Kids will surely love the imitation, visualization, relaxation, and deep breathing involved in T’ai Chi. Meditation is often the first step in the long and rewarding journey of T’ai Chi. It helps they stay focused, and also enjoy a great deal of peace from within. Above all, they end up having better self-control over themselves. Children who practice T’ai Chi for 10-15 minutes a day experience less stress because it creates an atmosphere of calmness and contentment. With the ever-increasing levels of stress in our children’s lives, isn’t this a great blessing by itself?
A Jiu-jitsu class for kids would ideally integrate self-defense coaching, skill oriented games, and conditioning to improve student’s mobility, motor skills along with confidence and discipline. Being a contact sport, healthy competition is highly encouraged in Jiu-jitsu. As a result, kids develop good sportsmanship and social skills as well. It’s also known to sharpen young minds.
The discipline and respect involved in Jiu-jitsu can be transferred in other areas of life as well for good. Generally speaking, a kid trained in Jiu-jitsu will be more dedicated, attentive, focused, and high on self-esteem in comparison to a kid who is hooked to the television screen. Not to forget the fact that it can help counterattack the problem of obesity in kids. Children are bound to learn and gain a lot from this form of martial arts. So, it’s worth a shot!