From mental health benefits to physical health improvements, the positive effects of martial arts for youth are widespread. Whether done as an extracurricular or in serious pursuit of a black belt, children and teenagers can build valuable physical and mental skills through regular martial arts practice.
Here are 3 major benefits of martial arts for youth.
- Increased resilience
As the saying goes, “if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”
Martial arts is a repeated lesson in trying again. On any given day, students will experience multiple failures along the way to achieving multiple successes. Building martial arts skills takes resilience to try and try again, even when the going gets tough.
Experiencing the disappointment of failing an attempt at a new skill may be frustrating for students. But when they finally master it after days or weeks of practice, the feeling of pride, self esteem, and confidence will be a memorable teacher in the value of hard work and resilience.
- A healthy outlet for energy
The childhood and teen years are packed full of energy that begs for a healthy outlet. Martial arts training provides a safe space for youth to get out that energy in a positive and productive manner, while building skills and relationships along the way.
A typical martial arts lesson runs for around an hour. In that time, students are able to get their heart rate up, their minds engaged, and their energy expended. Regular physical activity such as this is proven to increase focus, improve sleep, and decrease stress, which leads to happier, healthier kids from the inside out.
- Meaningful mentorship
The basis of PowerUP’s model, mentorship relationships can have a truly transformational impact on a young person’s development. Having an extra positive role model can be the necessary support a child needs to ask for help, seek advice, and make good decisions.
These healthy role models trusted by both parent/guardian and child are a valuable member of the “village” it takes to raise a young person into adulthood. Martial arts instructors are dedicated and capable individuals who commit to training and mentoring a group of young students. And while it may seem as though participants are merely learning how to grapple or practice self defense, there is also valuable character development at work.
Martial arts instructors teach both physical and mental toughness, confidence, self control, and more. Students are taught to believe in their abilities and to push themselves to their fullest potential. This is modeled by their instructors, who have done the hard work to reach the level of mastery they have achieved.
Children benefit from authority figures that are willing and able to show them the way. Martial arts is more than just a fun activity to do after school—it can provide real life lessons that lay the foundation for a healthy and happy life.
Here at PowerUP, we are firm believers in the power of martial arts. Both the physical activity and the mentorship formed between instructors and students have demonstrated positive effects for participants.
That’s why we started the PowerUP scholarship program to ensure that children of all socioeconomic backgrounds can reap the benefits of martial arts training. To inquire about sponsorship opportunities for your student, contact us today. To give the gift of martial arts training for underprivileged youth, click here to become a sponsor.