10 Tips to Help Your Child Succeed in Martial Arts

Children in martial arts uniforms practicing partner drills in a dojo. Two children in the foreground are engaged in a focused martial arts exercise, while two more children practice in the background.

Martial arts is a tough activity for children to pursue without parental support. Becoming a Black Belt doesn’t happen overnight; it takes time and perseverance. Parental support and participation is essential in this process if your child is to become the best Black Belt he or she can be. Here are 10 tips to help your child succeed in martial arts:

1. Be Early!  Arrive to every class 10 – 15 minutes early.  Give your child time to change their shoes, go to the bathroom and socialize with their classmates before class starts. When kids arrive late and feel rushed, knowing that they will miss the start of the class, this can result in a negative experience.

2. Keep a positive attitude and celebrate their martial arts achievements.  Observe classes so that you’re in attendance when your child gets a stripe.  Take pictures!  Praise their performance.  Encourage them when they’re struggling with a new technique.  Celebrate their accomplishments, i.e. getting a stripe or promoting to a new belt. Share words of encouragement. “I love to watch you practice.”  “That move is getting so much better.”

3. Make sure your child’s martial arts uniform is always clean and free from rips or holes.  If they look good, they will feel good.

4. Events are important!  Consider enrolling your child in extracurricular martial arts activities, such as workshops, seminars, parties, and camps. By doing so, they can forge connections with their classmates and seamlessly integrate into the martial arts community, feeling like a valued member of the MAX family.

5. Communication is key.  Keep open communication with Chief Instructor Sifu Rafael.  He can help your child more if he’s aware of any issues, i.e. bullies at school, not listening at home, etc.

6. Encourage practice at home.  Find or create an open space at home where your child can practice what they are learning in their martial arts classes without interruptions for at least 15 minutes a day. Help your child practice for better results.  Do the moves with them so you can help them understand better.

7. Help us, help your child.  Reinforce the life skills we are teaching in classes, at home.

8. Learn something about Martial Arts.  You can ask Sifu for some recommended literature, sit in on as many of your child’s classes as possible and take some adult martial arts classes so you can practice with your child at home.

9. Parents should be cheerleaders only.  Additionally, it’s crucial for parents to adopt the role of cheerleaders exclusively. Let Sifu take on the responsibility of assessing performance. Given his extensive experience in teaching over many years, students naturally anticipate his guidance, corrections, and critiques.

10. Purchase some private lessons.  1 private lesson is like attending 4 group classes.  Private lessons serve as a valuable resource, especially for children encountering difficulties in specific areas. Additionally, they play a pivotal role in nurturing a child’s confidence.

Bonus Tip: Keep their martial arts notebook active with stripe dates so you know what they need to work on.

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Ages 4 – 6
Ages 7 – 12