12 Reasons Why Kids Should Do Martial Arts

For Kids, Martial Arts is more than just a fun activity.  It’s a way for kids to learn valuable life skills that’ll help them develop into outstanding, independent young adults.

Here’s 12 reasons why every kid should do Martial arts.

1) Learning to Treat Others with Respect.

Bowing, shaking hands, touching gloves- this is all an aspect of training Martial Arts. We shake hands and bow to our training partners as a way to thank them for training with us.

You can not get good at martial arts by yourself on some mountain top somewhere. This is where we teach kids the importance of being a part of a team.

You could not learn martial arts with out a team of training partners helping you.

Kids need to understand that training Martial Arts, just like in life, you couldn’t accomplish any goal without a team or without your friends or with out the support of your family.

It’s like the Golden Girls theme song, “Thank you for being a friend”.

Thank you for being my training partner.

2) Developing Their Creativity.

People forget about the “art” in Martial Arts.

When kids are training Martial Arts they’re crafting and combing techniques and finding their own variations and using their imagination.

From the very first class, we teach kids a 3 strike combination: Straight left punch, Straight right punch, Right front kick.

Within the first month of training, kids are encouraged to develop their own combinations using the 3 techniques that they know.

They can go: Right punch-Left punch-Right punch. Or Right Kick-right punch- Right Kick. Or Left punch-Right Kick- Left punch.

By allowing kids to develop their own combinations, it allows them to use their creativity, their autonomy and their decision making.

3) Overcoming Adversity.

Fall down 9 times. Get up 10!


Training Martial Arts is hard work- for anybody.  All kids

whine from time to time. That’s okay. Let them whine and complain for a minute or two; but, then, we encourage them to do what they need to do.

We do it as adults. “Man, I can’t believe I have to work this weekend!” But what do you do?

You just do it.

That’s basically dealing with adversity- doing what you NEED to do even though you don’t want to do it.

Kids will say, “Mom, I don’t waaaannnnaaa go to Kickboxing. We always do so many push ups. I haaaaate push ups!”

But guess what?

Kids will whine and complain but as soon as they come to class and do a few push ups. They’ll do a few more because their friends are doing them and they’re all have a super fun time. And before they know it, they’re laughing and having a fantastic time in class.

Most goals are accomplished this way. How many times have you thought to yourself. “Man, I really don’t want to go to the gym today..” But you go anyways and you feel fantastic afterwards. That’s dealing with adversity. Most goals are accomplished by doing something that really, really sucks and is super tough but you do it and you stick to it no matter what.

Martial arts teaches kids that doing things that are super tough is what makes them super confident 🙂

4) Building Self Esteem.

Being successful at anything basically comes down to working really, really hard.

When you’re a kid, learning a new skill seems like a super long journey.

When the journey is long, it’s tough to see if we’re making any progress.

Have you ever done the Grouse Grind? Man, it’s a real grind heh!

The best thing is when you see those little markers that say “1/4 Mark”.

When I see that, I give my self a little hug inside. The top of the mountain is so far away, you can see the destination.

Training martial arts is like that. It just seems like the path to Black Belt is so far away.

Most goals are like that.

We need little markets to show us that we’re almost there. That doing the right thing and that if we just keep going we’re going to reach our goals.

With the belts and the stripes we give the kids, it shows that they’re getting a little bit better each day. And that hard work and consistency is the secret sauce for achieving any goal.

When kids start to achieve their goals they start to believe in themselves and their self esteem gets stronger and stronger.

5) Having Self Defense Skills.

Everyone should have some self defense skills. Children are some of the most vulnerable citizens of any society and we must do everything possible to protect them.

I believe that the best way to protect kids is to empower them so that they can protect themselves.

Now of course, you always want to be there of your kids.  But let’s get real.  That’s not always possible.

That’s when our children need to be able to protect themselves.

What is your primary hope for your child? I know that for my parents, their main goal was to empower me and my two sisters so that we would be strong, independent, autonomous adults when they were grow up.

My parents wanted me to be okay when they were no longer around.

That is ultimately how I want to empower my students. I want them to be able to defend themselves when not one else is around to help them.

I want my students to be strong and capable enough to help themselves.

6) Establishing Great Friendships.

Doing any activity together usually builds friendships. Training martial arts is no different.

When you train, sweat and strive to reach your goals with each other, it immediately builds bonds. This is quickly evident with any group of kids.

When kids work together, this teaches them that friendship is about having fun and playing with each other but the strongest of bonds are built as you struggle and work hard together as a team to accomplish common goals.

7) Building Focus and Concentration.

Martial Arts are a complex series of movements. There’s no way you can execute these movements without highly focused concentration.

Kids will see a demonstration for a kicking combination and they’ll all go, “Wwwooowwww!!!”

Sometimes you’ll get kids thinking that there’s no way they can do something because it’s just seems way too complex. But with some practice, some patience, some expert coaching and a little bit of highly focused concentration..all the kids are able to do it.

This teaches kids that with the right amount of focused concentration, they can complete any task and reach any goal.

8) Establishing Self Acceptance.

We’re all built differently.  We all have different gifts, talents and abilities.  We all have shortcomings, faults and imperfections.

That’s what makes us human beings and that’s what makes us special.

I can’t throw that kick; but, I can sure throw that punch!

I can’t do a cartwheel; but, I can sure run fast in a straight line!

We all have troubles learning some things and we all have natural gifts for other things.

Kids are going to find some techniques easy to learn and some other techniques difficult.

Some techniques take longer for some kids.

And some techniques will be learned faster for some kids.

But that’s okay.  Kids need to understand that.  It builds a healthy level of self acceptance and self love.

9) Building Courage.

Learning anything new is scary. But learning Martial Arts seems particularly daunting because Martial Arts moves seem almost impossible at first.

When you’re starting a Martial Arts, the hardest thing is first walking into the martial arts club. That’s the same for everyone- men, women, kids, Pandas…

Everyone one feels scared from time to time. And definitely doing something new for the first time is always scary.

For kids, they’re ALWAYS doing something new and different. Why? Because they’re kids- they don’t have experience in..well..anything..

When kids are intimidated to do something; but, they find a way to do it anyways, what are they doing? They’re exercising courage. Courage means to act in the face of fear.

Life is scary. Going to a new school is scary. Moving to a different city is scary. Asking someone out on a date is scary.  But to do it even though we’re scared is how we make our lives better. Courage is the magic elixir that allows us to do what we want to do even though we’re scared.

Doing martial arts can be scary. There’s always new tasks and new techniques and some of them seem impossible at first. Most kids are scared to even try to do the moves because they’re worried about failing.

But when kids triumph over their fears and they’re able to do the moves then this builds courage.

10) Establishing Leadership Skills.

Kids martial arts classes are a bit different than any other class your child will ever take.

The main difference is that all the kids train and work out together. Imagine an elementary school where all the kids in different grades get to hang out with each other in ONE class.

Weird right?

But awesome at the same time.

So what does this mean? This means that kids in lower grades get to mentoring from kids in higher grades.  And kids in higher grades get to exercise their leadership skills with the kids in the lower grades.

Pretty cool heh?  This is the same as in a Kids Martial Arts class.

Kids who are higher belts get to be “Big Brothers” and “Big Sisters” to the kids who are lower belts.

In our Kids Martial Arts classes, the kids with the higher belts get to exercise their leadership skills to the kids with the lower belts.

I personally see our Kids Martial Arts class as a Leadership class.

From my personal experience as a professional teacher, a business owner, an employer and a head instructor to my team of Black Belts- leadership is the number one skill for success.

In our Martial Arts classes, we teach all of our students to be strong, empowering leaders.

11) Forging a Healthy Active Lifestyle.

Why do kids play video games? Well, because video games are fun. Now, how do we encourage kids to exercise???

By making exercise fun!

Kids need to exercise so that they can strengthen their growing bones and muscles. But we also want to encourage kids to see that working out and staying active and healthy is a way of life.

Every human being needs to eat, sleep AND exercise.

If we don’t eat..what happens? Our bodies shut down.

If we don’t sleep, our bodies will shut down.

Now what happens if we don’t exercise? Our bodies will also shut down. It’ll take years, not days; but eventually our bodies will shut down if we get zero physical activity.

By having kids do martial arts, we are showing kids that working out IS hard work but it can also be super fun.

And we’re instilling in them from a young age that working out and staying active and healthy is a way of life.


12) Bully Proofing.

Bullying has always been a problem and it always will be.

Bullies are everywhere.  They’re just in our school yards but they’re on our sports teams, our work places and sometimes even in our own households.

I believe that solution to Bullying to empower kids to be strong, assertive and independent.

A HUGE part of our curriculum is to teach kids to be assertive and strong.
“Leave me alone or we’ll both get in trouble” is an example of what we teach our students when dealing with a Bully.

Of course, we also teach our students to protect themselves if they’re physically in danger; but, that’s only if there’s no other choice.  And if they can’t use their words to stop their attacker.

Ultimately, we teach kids to have a strong, confident self image and empowering body language to further empower them to deal with any conflict.

Although not an exhaustive list of reasons why kids should do Martial Arts, this is just a quick rundown of the many benefits learning a Martial Art will give any child.

Kids “Bully Proof” Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Program in Brentwood Burnaby


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Ritchie Yip

Ritchie Yip

Head Instructor at Infighting Training Centers
Ritchie Yip is the Head Instructor for InFighting Training Centers located in Downtown Vancouver and Brentwood Burnaby.InFighting Training Centers offers programs in Kickboxing, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Bootcamp Conditioning Classes and Personal Training
Ritchie Yip

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