Updated: Apr 24
Reasons are of course subjective. When it comes to Martial Arts, however, most reasons and motivations are similar. That is to say, the 'benefits' of training in any Martial Arts, are universal. The development of discipline, fitness and will, amongst other attributes, are what makes us seek out this form of training.
I have met and communicated with many parents over the course of the last two and a half years. I have spoken to them at length about their motivations behind subscribing their children to our Club. Most parents are savvy enough to know the reasons why their children should begin to practise Martial Arts. Some are oblivious to the facts.
What is written below arose from my personal experiences of training Martial Arts when I was a teenager, teaching Children the principles of TaeKwonDo and having open conversations with the parents of my Students. They are not factual, but rather results I have mentally noted down through my time studying the psychology and business of Martial Arts.
Many children grow up with an abundance of energy that can be translated into expressive thought and speech. They are not bound by the restricitve parameters that we, as adults self inflict. I have found that Children often ask questions in a straight forward and cut throat manner. They express their thoughts very openly and with fervour. But...there are also many Children who do not grow up this way.
I have been so fortunate to meet and teach Students who attend with an absolute lack of confidence, let alone self confidence. They are timid and introverted. They possess self doubt. But, I have come to learn that these Students are not truly like this. Their true self is hidden behind multiple layers of protection. And this is why I have been fortunate.
Martial Arts is rooted in a form of self expression. The use of loud Kihaps, exagerated stance movements, floating like a butterfly and stinging like a bee, is all part of allowing ourselves to truly feel free and possess an indominable spirit. So when those principles are shared and taught to Children, one can only imagine the vast changes. Shouting bravely, and loudly when striking, develops a timid child's confidence highly because it reaffirms their authority. "I strike, and I strike well and with utmost confidence", because anything less, renders the attack meaningless.
Another example lies in the fact that TaeKwonDo plays to the strength of the physical anatomy of Children. TKD emphasises high standards of flexibility, which young Students naturally possess. They are able to reach optimal levels of flexibility at an unbelievable rate.
Little things like this done constantly over a period of time with awareness, develops any attributes in any of us. And so the inevitable result is that the once shy Student begins to understand his/her potentiality. They realise the true extents of their abilities when they believe in themselves.
Year by year, week by week, class by class, the layers of protection are slowly peeled off. And the end result is an undeniable satisfaction that the young Student hasn't changed at all. They are still the same kid from the beginning . The difference now is that they know what they can do. All that is left is for them to flip that switch.