Kids and Muay Thai Training
“The martial arts are ultimately self-knowledge. A punch or a kick is not to knock the hell out of the guy in front, but to knock the hell out of your ego, your fear, or your hang-ups.”
10 Reasons Muay Thai benefits kids
In a culture that seems to glorify violence in everything from music to video games and television shows, the idea of enrolling your child in Muay Thai training classes may not at first seem like a good one. Muay Thai training is actually very beneficial to kids. Here are 10 of the reasons why you may want to consider Muay Thai training for your kids:
1. Fostering Self-Discipline – One of the central tenets of Muay Thai is an absolute focus on self-discipline. Today’s kids are so accustomed to receiving instant gratification that lessons in self-restraint and discipline aren’t always easy to come by. Kids with a Muay Thai background, however, are continually reminded of how essential self-discipline is.
2. Boosting Socialization Skills – Kids who don’t always thrive in highly social environments may find it easier to get to know people and make new friends when they’re in a room filled with peers who share a common interest. The kids on the playground may not always have much common ground, but devotees to Muay Thai are able to get to know one another through shared pursuits. Partner-driven forms like Muay Thai can also foster camaraderie, as they force kids to pair off and build their skills together.
3. Encouraging Physical Activity – Limiting screen time is a great idea when it comes to getting kids off the couch and encouraging them to be more active, but it only goes so far. Enrolling an inactive child in such a physically demanding pastime not only discourages the sedentary lifestyle she’s used to, but also gives her an enjoyable activity that inspires her to keep moving.
4. Learning to Set and Achieve Goals – Muay Thai is based around an accomplishment system of coloured arm bands that signify the wearer’s degree of skill. When your child strives toward each new arm band, he’s learning valuable lessons about setting and reaching his goals.
5. Increased Self-Esteem – Confidence comes with achievement, so your child’s self-esteem level will get a boost with every new move he masters and every arm band he earns. Kids who struggle with a low sense of self-worth usually become more confident as time progresses while they’re enrolled in a Muay Thai class.
6. Instilling a Sense of Respect – Learning Muay Thai will require your child to show her instructor unflinching respect. Today’s kid culture doesn’t always include respect for authority, adults or those in advanced positions. When she goes to her Muay Thai class, though, your child will be learning lessons in respect along with new moves.
7. Encouraging Non-Violent Conflict Resolution – Thinking that Muay Thai instruction promotes violent behavior is justified if your only experience with the activity comes from television or movies. Children will have a greater sense of confidence because of their training and be more willing to stand up for themselves, which will often cause the aggressor to back down. If the conflict does become physical your child will have the skills to defend themselves.
8. Improving Listening Skills – In order to master the skills she’s being taught and advance through the arm band ranks, your child will have to exercise superior listening skills. Kids who aren’t always adept when it comes to paying attention to what they’re told can benefit from the verbal instruction and one-on-one work in the gym.
9. Developing Teamwork Skills – Whether he’s being tested to get a new belt or sparring in a practice setting to master a new manoeuvre, there are few things that your child does in his martial arts classes that will be done on his own. Working together to learn new things and accomplish goals is an important life lesson for kids to learn, and instruction in the martial arts can help your child learn that lesson.
10. Improvement in Other Areas of Life – The benefits of Muay Thai training don’t end in the gym. The boost in confidence, increased fitness level and new cooperation skills will also help your child navigate the academic and social aspects of school, affect his behavior at home and have an all-around good influence on him as he develops into an adult.