Karate in Saffron Walden, Attleborough, Melbourn, West Wickham, and Whittlesford

YOUR CHILD’S FIRST KARATE CLASS

There’s always a first time for everything. Do you remember when it was your child’s first day at nursery or school? Their first time being away from you? Were they nervous or scared, were you? Children will react differently to these situations some will be nervous and scared some will be excited and full of beans! The same goes for their first karate class. If you are a parent who has just enrolled your child for karate classes, or are thinking about doing so. Here’s how to prepare them for their first karate class.

 

NERVES ARE TO BE EXPECTED
Let’s face it. Everyone gets nervous their first time doing anything. That shouldn’t be any different for your child. Even if they are excited about their first class there will still be that little bit of trepidation. Remember that they’re going into a totally new environment different from what they’re used to. They may not know any of the other children in the class, it may be an idea to see if any of your child’s friends would like to join the class at the same time. They will have a new authority figure. It’s OK for them to be nervous. Just like all their other first experiences, guide them through it successfully. If your child cries, that’s completely ok too. Don’t react, stay calm. The instructor has seen this many times. Your child won’t be the first and certainly won’t be the last to be all excited about their first class right up until the moment they are going to walk through the dojo doors and then put the brakes on in a flood of tears. Be firm but calm as overreacting to your child crying will add fuel to the fire. Put your trust in the karate school and their instructors. As soon as you have gone your child like many others will join in and come out at the end of the class with a beaming smile like so many others.


ALL CHILDREN LEARN AT DIFFERENT RATES

Many parents are guilty of it. It’s natural to want your child to excel in everything they do. But there’s a thin line between healthy encouragement and pushing beyond reason. Remember that what your child may have seen on TV is very different from what they’ll experience in real life. TV is choreographed real life isn’t. Yes, they see many cool techniques and moves, but most of those techniques take time to learn and perfect. They won’t learn everything they see on TV overnight. Where martial arts are concerned don’t push too hard, encourage. There are many different levels and different parts to any martial arts program and children, just the same as you, find some things easier to learn than others. If for some reason your child misses out on a grading at some point there will always be a valid reason it won’t be that your child isn’t improving it might be quite the opposite in fact and the instructor has held your child back because he feels that with a little more time your child will get an even better mark at the next grading, remember encourage. Don’t push them so hard to the point where they’ll want to give up, being too afraid of failure or too afraid to disappoint you. Instead, give them healthy encouragement. If they fall, be there to pick them up to try again. Remind them how cool it was in the beginning and how they’ll practice to be perfect. Don’t push behind them, rather walk along-side them and guide them through.

BE THEIR STUDENT

It’s as simple as is sounds. Be a student, after class at some point ask your child to show you what they have learned and ask them to teach you, especially in those first classes. They may have learned how to make a proper fist or their first block or punch but showing you how to do it will help them to remember all of those little points their instructors have shown them. Again attending their first grading day is another daunting experience. They are “on stage” and want you to be proud of them. When you’re cheering on your child, it gives them an incredible boost to their self-esteem. Even before but especially after achieving their first belt you’ll notice that your child will want to try harder, practice more and attend class more often. So make it clear that you’re proud that they are trying their best, learning new skills and a martial art. Learning a martial art is not a quick thing nor should it be. Be wary of those clubs that promise you a black belt in under 3 to 4 years. It may seem simple enough, but often many parents forget that learning and perfecting a martial art takes time. Don’t push your child too hard and discourage them. Healthy encouragement is key, this will lead them to succeed.

 



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