Martial arts training is well-known for the benefits it provides to children in the development of physical skills and improved discipline. Parents often enroll their children in martial arts to achieve goals such as these. While the attainment of these goals is possible, parents often have unrealistic expectations of the time it takes for children to get there.
Of course, age, stage of development, and myriad other factors go into determining exactly how quickly a specific child will accomplish a particular goal. But, there is one thing that is the same across the board: when children start martial arts, parents need to remember that their child is embarking on a new journey, with new people, in a new environment, and learning new information.
An endeavor of this magnitude would be a bit overwhelming for anyone. Older children may handle this pressure a little better, but parents should expect a certain amount of time for integration, regardless of a child’s age.
The SKILLZ martial arts program’s age-specific curriculum was specifically designed to target individual age groups and to work on skills that are essential for each stage of development. Within this framework, each age group is also broken down to address physical, intellectual, emotional, and social growth that is appropriate for that age.
By creating the program in this way, children can achieve more in a quicker amount of time because the goals are challenging but also achievable.
Parents, however, must keep in mind that children are all different, developing and attaining goals at different times. In a specific age group, there may also be children who have been in the class for a longer time. These children have worked on the skills for that age group longer, and it would be unfair to measure a new ninja’s performance against a more advanced student. However, even for two children of the same age, who have started at the same time, one may achieve a specific skill quicker than another.
Let’s take this from a different view as well. Even if parents aren’t comparing their child to another, they often feel that their child should achieve a particular goal after only a short time of training. While parents will see some development and improvement in skills after a few weeks, expecting them to suddenly have a specific ability mastered after only a short time is unrealistic.
As they say, “slow and steady wins the race.” As children develop, we need to remember that they will get there when their bodies and minds are ready. Expecting certain things of a child that they are not physically, intellectual, emotionally, or socially prepared for can do more harm than good. Consistent training and practice of the skills, and celebrating small wins along the way is the key to success.
To learn more about the powerful Skillz childhood development program that uses martial arts as the vehicle for growth, or to get your child started at our Patchogue location, click the button below:
4GK MARTIAL ARTS
380 East Main St
Patchogue, NY 11772
Author: Jennifer Salama of Skillz Worldwide.
Jennifer is a 4th-degree black belt and has been training in martial arts since 2001. She has a Masters Degree in Child Psychology and has embraced the SKILLZ curriculum because of its focus on child development and using martial arts as a vehicle to develop the child as a whole.