Today, young children and teenagers have endured a time during the pandemic when they were isolated and forced to do things like learning and socializing online. As social media and other gaming interfaces allow children to behave impulsively and without consequences, it is critical to find a way for your child to learn positive characteristics outside the home through role modeling and training. Martial arts are, hands down, the best activity to achieve this goal. Connecting with a reputable studio staffed with professional and experienced instructors who emulate the characteristics at the core of martial arts is vital to introducing young children to a forum where focus, self-control, respect, and honor and celebrated. There are three significant ways in which martial arts instill positive characteristics in young people today when training in a family-friendly and reputable studio.
Individual and Personal Goal Setting and Achievements
Different from the constant comparison online, martial arts are unique because even in a group of peers, every student sets personal goals and works toward those goals. Competitiveness is with oneself, and students learn patience as they realize their effort results in how quickly they achieve their goals. A healthy and family-friendly studio, like SwiftKick Martial Arts, will encourage and push students to reach higher. Still, ultimately, the student is accountable for getting the next martial arts belt, which is empowering!
All students begin with white belts, and as they display characteristics, they are given a tape stripe. Students are ready to test for the next belt as the different color stripes are achieved and ceremonially placed on their existing belt. Many younger children are not sure what their goals are, but they enjoy learning new and different skills as well as the recognition of earning each stripe from their sensei. These stripes also help students focus on specific characteristics like honor, respect, self-control, and patience.
Persistence Builds Confidence
The inundation of social media in our children’s lives has taken a toll on them emotionally. When you are constantly exposed to people who portray perfection or that they are the “best” and have everything they need, it is challenging to feel confident, especially for young people. At their core, martial arts build confidence because students control their effort and outcome and begin to understand their role in things. When your progress is based solely on what you are willing to invest, once you achieve those goals, you are responsible for doing so. Setting goals and achieving them by persisting through challenges naturally builds confidence.
Unlike other organized sports, martial arts do not require immense physical strength or years of experience. Martial arts combine mind and body; each student is unique, and martial arts, unlike other sports, celebrate individuality. Whether tall, petite, athletic, or not, every child can thrive and build confidence through martial arts training. It is common for martial arts students to step out and take on a leadership role. Students also display more compassion and attribute it to excellent martial arts training.
SwiftKick Martial Arts has many instructors and helpers who began as students and have been with the studio for over a decade.
Self-Control, Honor, and Respect Go Hand in Hand
In martial arts training, self-control, honor, and respect are required to progress through rank and belt color. Young students who struggle to control themselves benefit from the necessary breathing and focus of the mind as techniques and moves are learned. Martial arts are not kicking and punching wildly. On the contrary, movement is controlled, targeted, and purposeful. When instructors are doing their job of being good role models for the characteristics of martial arts, honor and respect for self and others are non-negotiable.
A student with natural movement abilities will not progress faster than a student working to emulate the core characteristics. The characteristics and techniques in martial arts are united, and students training in a reputable studio will be guided on how and what to focus on to achieve stripes and, ultimately, the next belt. Martial arts are about thoughtfully controlling your mind and then using that focus to direct movement into an effective strike against an opponent.
Whether your child already displays all the characteristics mentioned or you would love to see them grow in one or more of these areas, martial arts is an excellent choice. Martial arts keep young people active, place them in a supportive environment and introduce them to goal setting and putting in the effort to achieve them. If you live in the Carlsbad or Rancho Bernardo areas in San Diego County, contact SwiftKick for a free trial class or when to come watch a training session. Brian Cowell and his team are dedicated to working with students of all ages to become the best version of themselves, and it all starts with strong character!