10 Reasons To Enroll Your Child In Karate
10 – Physical Fitness
Kids at all developmental ages benefit from regular physical activity. At pre-school ages, karate helps children build coordination, balance and movement abilities. As they get older, karate develops the strength and flexibility kids need to grow into healthy young adults.
9 – Friendships
For kids of all ages, one of the most important benefits of any activity is the social component. Making friends and learning healthy social skills is a critical developmental area, and karate is a fantastic way for kids to make new friends based on a common interest. Classes lend themselves toward opportunities to build teamwork, leadership, and interpersonal skills, and students of all ages often develop friendships in the dojo that last a lifetime.
8 – Continuous Learning
One of the core values in karate is that no one, of any age or rank, is ever “done learning.” There’s always more to learn, new ways to improve, and a next level to strive for. When kids are exposed to this philosophy, it carries into other areas of their lives, and instills a strong work ethic, a healthy curiosity, and desire to grow.
7 – Self-Defense
Karate is, first and foremost, a system of self-defense, and kids and adults alike can benefit from the ability to protect themselves and their loved ones. Moreover, knowing they can keep themselves safe instills a strong sense of confidence in kids, and improves their capacity to avoid unsafe situations altogether.
6 – Confidence
Achievements in any activity build tremendous self-esteem and confidence in kids, and karate is structured to provide countless opportunities for children (and adults) to succeed. From the colored belts that students earn, to the mental and physical obstacles they must overcome throughout their training, karate is a major confidence boost for children.
5 – Community
A sense of belonging is so important for the mental and emotional health of children. When kids walk into the karate dojo, they’re entering a supportive and inclusive culture where students are encouraged to cheer each other on and lift each other up.
4 – Discipline
Karate is one of the most structured activities a child can be a part of. Respect for one’s parents and teachers, and respect for one’s peers, is heavily emphasized in every class, as is the importance of following the rules of the dojo and the Sensei’s instructions.
3 – Competition
Karate simultaneously fosters competition with others, and with oneself. Unlike many team sports, there’s no “bench time” in karate. Every child is expected to give their best effort, and the only comparison a student is encouraged to draw is with themselves — are they better than they were yesterday? Still, for children who thrive in competitive sports, karate offers that outlet in multiple disciplines: kata (forms), kumite (sparring), kobudo (weapons), and jiujitsu/grappling.
2 – Goal Setting
In karate, children learn that they don’t have to be afraid of hard work. In fact, students learn to value hard work because they discover that their effort and dedication creates all the skills, knowledge, and abilities they need for success. Throughout the learning process, students are encouraged to set short-term, medium-term, and long-term goals — as it relates to the stripes and belts they earn denoting their rank in the dojo, but also process-based goals to improve specific areas of their training. Kids carry these goal-setting skills with them into the classroom, and beyond.
1 – Focus
The #1 issue for many parents is how to improve their child’s focus. They understand that good focus has a positive impact on kids’ academic success, on their relationships, and on their overall development. In an age where children are given more and more exposure to screens, attention spans are shrinking among children and focus is becoming an increasing challenge. In karate, focus is at the center of all other physical and mental skills. Karate classes are run in a way that requires kids to practice paying attention and staying mentally focused.