Want your child to be a leader? Martial arts classes for kids are about so much more than just punches and kicks. We say it all the time, but it’s completely true. Martial arts has a lot to offer kids of all ages, but in today’s blog post we’re going to focus on just one particular benefit- leadership.
Kids Martial Arts Classes Foster Discipline
Leadership really starts with discipline. Think of some of the greatest athletes of all time- their best advice is always “never give up”, “stay with it,” and “don’t quit.”
These aren’t just empty words. Those athletes are the greatest not necessarily because they’re the most talented, but because they’ve learned discipline.
They’ve learned that doing things they don’t want to do, like hitting the gym twice a day or eating salads instead of sweets, will give them the results that no one else can get. That discipline is what makes them the best.
So how do we instill world-class discipline in our students? Simple. Every time your child comes to their martial arts classes with Gracie Largo Jiu Jitsu, they’re not just learning self defense moves.
They’re also playing games and doing different activities to build their character and life skills without them even realizing it, courtesy of our awesome instructors.
Even better, we use positive reinforcement to make sure those good habits stick and stay effective. For discipline, weird example, we’ll positively reward them for listening to their instructor and sitting still.
As you’ve surely noticed with your own children, kids nowadays have very short attention spans and get bored easily … So we also use disguised repetition to keep students focused and excited all throughout the class.
We’ll play games where they have to repeat different moves a bunch of times, and over time this format helps them bulk up their discipline muscle and persevere through those short attention spans.
One of the coolest things about martial arts is that the life skills we’re teaching them actually make a difference. There comes a time when we stop disciplining them, and your child naturally disciplines themselves.
They absorb that self-discipline and strive for excellence, not giving up when things are tough, going the extra mile to reach their full potential, using positive self-talk… These are amazing transformations for us to witness, and it’s how lasting leadership is fostered in our classes.
Better Grades for a Better Future
It’s not too much of a jump to see how better discipline can create better grades, right? Think of it this way- if your child is struggling to keep high grades, it could be because they’re just not focusing.
They’re not motivated to sit down and do their work, they’re bored, they’d much rather be on their devices… The discipline they learn in martial arts class is going to keep them in their seats and focused on class until it’s done, even when they would really rather be doing something else.
Once discipline is down pat, another tool we use in martial arts to help with better grades is focus.
Just like with discipline, we’ll play different games that positively reward focused attention in the right places – on the instructor and on the task at hand.
Because we have rules in martial arts, and those rules are reinforced by the environment (uniform, instructors, etc.), your child is more likely to listen to and respect those rules here in our studio.
One of these rules is that they listen thoughtfully to their instructor or a peer when he or she is talking, just as a baseline form of respect. No phones or electronic devices are allowed during class – it’s only your child, their instructor, and their fellow students, all having fun as they learn these awesome skills.
Once your child has developed that focus and released some of that desire for instant gratification, they’ll associate focus with positive emotions (I learned how to kick the paddle by focusing really hard!
That was awesome!) and then apply it to all aspects of their life, including their grades. That positive association will help them wield their attention in the proper direction- their homework.
And then focusing on their homework means better homework scores, higher absorption of the material, and voila- better grades!
How Better Grades Makes Your Child a Leader
It’s also easy to see the connection between better grades and leadership.
Even if your child improves their grades just a bit, it’s because of THEIR actions and initiatives. That’s a sign of a natural leader- self ownership.
When your child is making progress thanks to their own efforts, their teachers will start to notice.
They’ll receive more positive attention and praise, which will just motivate them even further to lead themselves and build those habits of success. The rest just comes naturally!
Whether they’re captain of a sports team, president of their student council or volunteering in their community, your child’s discipline skills (and all the other skills they learn in martial arts, like respect, perseverance, and focus) will help them become the absolute best version of themselves. The confidence they feel from being awesome is just the cherry on top!
Martial Arts Classes Help Kids with Their Mindset
So now that we understand how discipline and focus can create the perfect environment for leadership, let’s talk about mindset.
Mindset is basically how you talk to yourself, so it’s also known as self-talk.
When you’re a child, everyone around you is talking to you, and you learn to internalize what they’re saying. If you constantly hear that you’re dumb, you’re going to believe that you’re dumb and then grow up telling yourself that you’re dumb.
If you constantly hear that you can truly do anything you put your mind to, which is what we teach in our martial arts classes, you’re going to go on to do amazing things.
Our instructors are really amazing when it comes to mindset, and they make sure that each child knows exactly what they’re capable of- which is anything they put their mind to!
So much of leadership is about keeping that perseverant mindset, and that’s what we teach in martial arts.
Think back to the last ninja movie you saw, and you’ll recognize that martial arts are NOT easy. Ask any student, new or old- moving your body in a new way and getting the moves down pat can be pretty tricky.
When a student isn’t getting something, it’s the difference in their mindset that will determine their outcome. The student who tells themselves that they’re dumb and can’t do it, won’t get it.
The student who tells themselves to keep going and never give up, will. And that’s what makes martial arts classes for kids so different from any other sport- it’s an individual sport in a group setting, so they have the space to learn these life skills.
We make sure our students know that they’re capable of success on and off the mat, and this creates leaders of them all.
Help Your Child Be Their Best- Join Us!
Discipline, focus, perseverance, mindset- these are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to kids martial arts classes and how they create leaders. If you want your child to be the best version of themselves they can possibly be for years to come, join our Largo martial arts classes for kids risk-free and see for yourself what our Gracie Largo Jiu Jitsu Child Greatness program can do! Your child will LOVE it!