After school program that your child’s school offers are all beneficial in certain ways, but martial arts for kids has really special advantages that other after school program just don’t offer. 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 Centerton parents choose martial arts for kids and some of them may surprise you! Read on to find out more.
Reason #1: Martial Arts For Kids Helps Them Focus
With the rise of technology and screen time, it’s no secret that a lot of kids struggle with staying focused and concentrating. Some of it’s 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, martial arts 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 learn 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 praise them, using positive reinforcement to create a reward connection between paying attention and being celebrated. 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
A lot of parents have no idea that martial arts classes can actually help your child get better grades. How, you may ask? Here’s the breakdown: Through fun games in class and consistent practice of the martial arts moves, we teach them how to improve their focus and attention skills (like in Reason #1).
With this improved focus, our students become more “indistractable”, 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 concentrate on the tasks at hand.
Better focus leads to better listening, so the information is “sticking” better, and they can sit down to complete their assignments with a higher quality of concentration. The information is “sticking” better, they’re recalling that info on tests and quizzes, they’re scoring higher because of this heightened recall, and voila- better grades! Yep- it’s that simple, and it really does work!
Reason #3: Martial Arts Is An After School Program That Builds Confidence
Every parent wants their child to be confident in themselves. But sometimes, group after school 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 an after school program that suits them where they don’t have to worry about “letting the team down” in any way.
Martial arts is great for this particular kind of child 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 progress and achieve. In this way, our students can continually see how awesome it feels to set goals and get goals. They can understand the discipline and perseverance it takes to become successful. Those are skills they’ll take with them for life.
Another perk is that your child can learn to support their fellow students and be a cheerleader for another person’s accomplishments. 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
Most after school program 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 instructors then become positive role models to our students, bonding with the kids and nurturing them through positive reinforcement, positive self-talk, and a focus on progress, not perfection. The great thing about martial arts as a whole is that every black belt was once a beginner… so every instructor can teach from a place of integrity and relate to students when they’re feeling frustrated or upset!
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 double lesson of perseverance and respect is just not as common in other after school program.
Reason #5: It’s Just Fun!
This one’s a no-brainer, martial arts for kids is just fun! Our amazing instructors make each after school lesson fun and engaging. Our classes are centered around non-stop activity. We break each class into different sections to keep our kids engaged and learning and sprinkle fun games into the mix to add an element of surprise.
Games and activities not only help the kids stay engaged with our lessons, but they also help our students connect fitness and positive emotion, a connection that will serve them for the rest of their lives. This big focus on fun is also how our instructors manage 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!