The Karate Kid series of movies showed the classic example of the bullied teenager taking up a martial art and fighting back against his tormentors. It was a legendary feel-good film and encouraged tens of thousands of teens to take up karate. While you shouldn’t assume that karate will transform a teenager into Jackie Chan, it can be an excellent addition to their lifestyle. Teenagers should always be encouraged to participate in sports because it helps them to remain active, fit and healthy and can keep them away from the unsavory aspects of modern life. Even if your child is active in various sports, there is always room for karate as it can help them in their other endeavors.
Martial Arts Teaches Discipline
One of the biggest problems facing coaches is a lack of discipline amongst young participants. This is especially the case in team sports where a gang of unruly teens can cause chaos if they are not properly supervised. When it comes to karate, each class begins and ends with a respectful bow to the teacher and if students do not behave themselves, they are thrown out of the class, no questions asked. As most teens want to learn how to defend themselves, it is probable that they will adhere to the disciplinary rules of the karate class and this behavior will carry over into other sports.
Martial Arts Improves Flexibility
One of the biggest issues facing teenagers today is burnout. Any single student can be involved in basketball, soccer and American Football and be training for hours on end. It is common for teens to suffer a number of injuries, especially when they play contact sport. With karate, there is the option to spar but if you prefer, you can simply learn the basic moves as part of a group. The combination punching and kicking along with the stretching ensures that the bones and joints of students are strengthened and the risk of pulling or straining muscles is reduced.
Martial Arts Boosts Confidence
There is something about karate that imbues a sense of confidence into those that practice it. Even the most talented teens can be crippled by a lack of self-confidence and this can translate into lackluster performances. Having the ability to defend one’s self is a powerful tool and this can lead to a tremendous boost in confidence that is carried into other sports.
Never underestimate the carryover that can be achieved from karate classes. Even the most active teenagers should consider adding karate to their schedule because of how it can help improve performance in other sports.