Tae Kwon Do
1. A Boost in Self Esteem
Nothing does more for a kids self esteem than to break a board with his fist and or foot. The look on their faces as they break the board and hear the applause from the grownups makes them feel proud of all the hard work they put in up until that point.
A child learns that they are not competing against others, only with themselves. As they progress, they know without a doubt that they have earned those belts. They learn to believe they can do it because they KNOW they can do it
2. Self-Discipline Self Control
Taekwondo teaches self discipline and self control by teaching difficult forms and kicks that require intense focus, training, and devotion in order to learn well and to master. Taekwondo also requires you to be precise in your movements which takes alot of control.
3. Socialization Skills
Kids who don’t always thrive in highly social environments may find it easier to get to know people and make new friends when they’re in a room filled with peers who share a common interest.
If you have a shy or timid child than putting them in a TaeKwonDo class, where they are all start off at the same level, helps them learn to interact with other kids there own age as they all go through the same process of learning.
4. Physical Fitness and Activity
The 3 pieces of the fitness puzzle are strength, flexibility, and endurance. A typical Taekwondo class involves dynamic punching and kicking drills, blocks, core-strengthening exercises such as sit ups, push ups and stretches.
A kid will build stamina and strength through such active movements and for younger children, learning and practicing the forms (specific patterns of defense and attack movements) leads to better motor skills and body control.
Another plus is that by limiting the time a kid is in front of a TV or computer and getting them off the couch encourages them to more active is always a good thing.
Signing up an inactive child for a physically demanding Martial Arts like TaeKwonDo not only discourages the sedentary lifestyle they may be used to, but also gives them an enjoyable activity that encourages them to keep moving.
5. Learning the Ability to Fail
In today’s society where everyone seems to get an award regardless of how well they did or did not do, learning to fail, although this may be a harsh term, maybe its better to say comes in 2nd, for example in a Tae Kwon Do sparring event, is a valuable lesson to learn. This way they can talk to their teacher about what they can work and what they can do better for the next time.
One of the first things you will notice when starting TaeKwonDo is the instructor will start to instill in a student the necessity of showing respect to not only the instructor but to their classmates as well, regardless of their skill level.
In a quality TaeKwonDo school you will rarely if ever see a student boasting or showing off. They know better than to flaunt their skills and to make other people around him feel small. They understand that every one has their strengths and weaknesses and they cherish the differences.
7. Goal Setting
Having goals in one of the most important thing one can learn in life and in Tae Kwon Do they do this from the very start. First with the macro goal of getting a black belt but then also the micro goal of going up the belt ranks.
This not only instills in a child a great habit but it also show them with hard work and dedication any goal they set can be achieved. I suppose that if they learn just one thing from their time in Tae Kwon Do, I would say this is by far the most important.
Today’s world is full of distractions, from the Tv to the video games, so by taking a martial art like TaeKwonDo, a child develops the ability to focus at a young age which pays dividends not only today but for their entire life.
In choosing a TaeKwonDo school, look for one that has a distraction-free environments so your child has some time to forget about the outside world and concentrate on their training. Meditation also plays a big role in taekwondo so don’t be surprised if your child’s teacher sets aside time at the beginning or end of class for it.
From sparring to board breaking and to rising up the ranks to by getting a new belt, there are not many things your child will do by themselves in a TaeKwonDo school.
A kid will be constantly working together with his classmates to learn new forms and techniques that helps to form the important skill of teamwork that they will use throughout their lives.
10. Encouraging Non-Violent Resolution
Thinking that TaeKwonDo instruction promotes violent behavior can be a reasonable assumption if your only experience with Tae Kwon Do comes from television or movies.
However and in fact, TaeKwondo as well as other martial arts have many defensive styles that teach kids peaceful, non-violent conflict resolution skills and emphasize the prudence of avoiding a physical altercation.
Engaged children learn more, faster. Good kids TaeKwonDo programming understands this and balances the responsibilities and traditions of the art with challenges, games, and socially focused events to keep kids engaged in the lessons and the community.
Hopefully at this point you can see the many benefits a kid gets from studying TaeKwonDo. Of course, the other martial arts out there, provide similar benefits but having taken TaeKwonDo for an extended period of time, I can tell you first hand the changes I have seen in kids that have trained in TaeKwonDo for an extended period of time.
I mention the “extended period of time” because I don’t want one to assume that this transformation happens over night and every child is different.
It will take time, some shorter, others longer, but you will see subtle changes happening that your child may not even be aware of such as being more respectful to older people or more kind to others of their same age bracket. I know, for myself, I am still answering to people that I encounter that are older than I with a “Yes Ma’am” or a “Yes Sir” that the training I took when I was younger instilled in me.