Many parents of young children recognize the value of martial arts in teaching important skills. But some wait until their child is older before they look into classes. If your preschooler is interested, now is a good time to start their training. These are a few of ways the martial arts benefit young children.
FITNESS & PHYSICALITY
Our society as a whole becomes less active with each passing year. Children need more exercise than adults, for growth and health. Martial arts are a fun, unique way for preschoolers to get a workout. In addition, they provide physicality that is often lacking in the modern child. Karate has activities such as: sparring; partner work; wrestling; and safe, rule-focused pulling and pushing contests with other kids. These things help children learn self defense and confidence around others.
SELF-CONTROL AROUND YOUNG CHILDREN
A level of discipline is expected in traditional martial arts classes. Regular attendance helps a preschooler learn accountability. They learn to control themselves, even when others don’t behave. And even when they had a cupcake earlier. Even when they have a sleepover later. Or when they are just full of energy. With practice and their instructor’s support, preschoolers constantly improve self-control.
SOCIAL CLASSROOM SKILLS
Karate classes give the preschooler a disciplined, supervised setting in which to learn how to learn. A small student-to-teacher ratio is ideal for practicing their attention skills. They learn to keep their hands to themselves. And they learn the acceptable times when you touch: hit, block, wrestle, etc. The instructor tells them how to proceed in those activities and what the rules are for engagement. In karare, preschoolers get a lot of practice in following directions. They do all of that as well as practicing taking turns in our Little Dragons program.
by Jenifer Tull-Gauger