What should parents of karate students expect as their kids gear up for school?
In a word, excellence. But it’s an excellence defined by the potential of each individual student. And sometimes the excellence is slow to unfold.
What does that mean? You ask. Is my kid going to get straight As right out of the gate? Karate=discipline, right? Does that mean my kid will never misbehave?
Instructors can’t make that promise, though they set an example for kids in the karate school, and kids learn how to respect that example, how to interact with adults and their peers in a setting that demands focus, attention, and courtesy.
There are a few fundamental reasons why.
Kids are rewarded for good behavior in karate—stripes on their belts, showing off new moves in front of the class, high fives, etc. This reinforces the feeing in kids that respectful behavior gets positive attention.
In the same vein, disrespectful behavior gets negative attention (your belt can be taken away, for example; or you can fail a test).
Finally, bullying is totally off the table in karate class; kids feel like they’re in a safe environment, where they’re encouraged to stand up to bullies and to never bully other kids.
That’s how black belt excellence is built, and the more exposure kids get to training in the setting of a martial arts school, the more this black belt discipline develops. It becomes part of who kids are and how they behave, at home and at their academic school as well.
Hopefully you’ve seen this as your kids progress toward black belt. And if you haven’t yet enrolled, try out a free introductory lesson to get a sense of how karate can set your kid up for success in the classroom.