While you probably associate Karate with aggression, strength and fighting, you may not know about the Japanese cultural values upon which the discipline is based. Like many parents, you may be concerned about allowing your son or daughter to take up training without realizing all of the benefits. Here are six benefits of letting your kid start karate training that you may not have heard about.
#1: Karate Teaches The Value Of Respect
If you have yet to visit Japan, you may be unaware of its strong traditions and culture of respect. This surprizes many visitors as Japanese exports such as movies, Manga comics and martial arts seem ultra violet. In fact, daily life in Japan sees people treat each other with a high level of respect. Experience is emphasized and valued to a far greater degree than in many Western countries. Karate training emphasizes the value of the instructor’s experience. Letting your kid join a karate class should influence the way they behave at school and at home.
#2. Karate Helps Your Child Become More Active
As with any physical activity, Karate classes will improve your child’s level of physical fitness and endurance. Karate fighting bouts are short in duration and highly intense, meaning that the physical results can be dramatic. Most of the training is designed to replicate the rigors of fighting and your child will understand the importance of keeping themselves physically fit if they want to succeed at fighting. Hopefully, this goal of becoming more active will remain with your child long after the karate lessons finish.
#3: Karate Teaches Goal-Setting
Karate instructors base their instructions upon guidelines that have been passed down through generations in Japan. Despite instructors often not being Japanese themselves, they will likely have visited Japan on a number of occasions and perhaps even have trained there for an extended period of time. Karate is taught in a way that emphasizes the ability of successful people to set goals for themselves. Permitting your child to join a karate class will see them develop this important life-long skill. This will improve every area of your child’s life, from their ability to complete school work to their readiness to complete chores at home.
#4. Karate Increases Patience
Patience is one of the hardest traits to develop for most children. Learning new karate moves or developing their flexibility will teach your child that not everything can be accomplished in a matter of hours. Karate students get the sense that some processes take dedicated practice for many weeks and months in order to master. In this respect, karate classes will help your child become more patient. This will help with their school studies and hopefully stay with them as they enter adulthood.
#5: Karate Improves Conflict Resolution
The development of karate has been strongly influenced by Japanese values and culture. Students who take up karate quickly learn to see beyond the physical acts of striking and blocking. Far from becoming more violent or aggressive, karate students improve their ability to resolve conflicts verbally. Karate instructors drill into their students the fact that violence should be a last line of defence. Kids who take up karate lessons often improve their ability to resolve matters without resorting to physical means.
#6: Karate Lessons Should Improve Your Kid’s School Grades
Karate lessons will encourage your kid to improve their strength, balance, coordination and endurance but the benefits do not stop there. The surprising knock-on effect of this physical training is that kids often find themselves better able to focus and study at school. Karate lessons for kids help students to concentrate for longer at school and to write and sit for longer periods of time without zoning out or becoming distracted.
How many of these benefits had you considered? Many parents never see past the fighting moves that karate teaches. If you feel as if your child would benefit from improved school grades, increased levels of concentration and a healthy respect for others, karate classes are the perfect solution. Head down to your nearest center to see for yourself just how safe and enjoyable classes can be. Many martial arts centers offer karate classes for kids and some offer a special after school program. Schools offering this will collect kids from their school and bring them to the center where they are given time to complete their homework. Students are given healthy snacks and refreshments before enjoying a fun karate lesson in the early evening. This is a great way of ensuring that kids complete their homework and have fun in a safe environment. Parents can collect their kids from the karate center in the evening, so it is ideal for busy parents who can’t collect their kids earlier on in the day.