Martial Arts Ann Arbor - Jujutsu | Jujitsu | Jiu-Jitsu

9 Benefits of Kids Martial Arts in Ann Arbor

Fitness: every kid needs physical activity in their life. From cardio warm-ups to the strength-based challenges of routines, martial arts like kids judo and kids karate will get your kid moving and burning energy. Keeping up with practice at home will enhance these benefits.

Empowerment:: kids gain confidence by learning self-defense moves and mastering skills to advance to new levels. A kid who struggles with bullies can feel more confident learning techniques to avoid a fight; a kid who has struggles academically and/or athletically will feel more confident by focusing on personal growth instead of competition.

Discipline:: training in martial arts requires concentration and focus and there are elements built right in to help kids develop these skills. You'll see discipline reinforced in the moves, uniforms, customs, and attitudes of martial arts. The discipline kids learn in the dojo often positively affects behavior off the mat, too.

Respect:: for their master, instructors, peers, self, others, and for skills they develop, kids learn many forms of respect through martial arts. Respect is often seen as the primary lesson of martial arts, even before the powerful moves that initially attract so many martial artists.

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Can Training in Martial Arts Make You Happier?

JMAC karate student, Andrew’s perspective:

“Karate really became a part of my life until I let it go to focus on my career in my 30s; I never stopped thinking about it. In fact, I kept working on kata on and off. I really regretted the several years being out of the martial arts. It was definitely not a good thing to be away from in terms of mental and physical health and well-being. There’s also the meditative aspects of it and the mental discipline.  There was a clear distinction in my happiness when I was training and when I wasn’t.” He smiles, “Yes, martial arts will make you happier.”

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Why Should Your Kids Experience Martial Arts?

Does your son or daughter need more discipline, focus, and activity in their life?

Is your child interested in martial arts and you want to learn more?

Not sure about the benefits of kids judo or kids karate?

Picture an after-school activity with countless benefits for the body, mind, and behavior. Martial arts checks all these boxes. Among all the options for kids' activities today, martial arts may have one of the widest range of benefits. Although fitness may be what draws people to the dojo at first, martial arts like kids karate or kids judo help people improve in so many other ways as well. Parents are often impressed by the variety of skills and lessons kids learn in martial arts and are even more impressed when they see these things translate to other areas of life like performance in sc
hool, behavior at home, and with focus and the ability to learn .

Ready to learn more? Check out a few of the top benefits your kids can get from martial arts here.

What’s your Greatest Challenge in Martial Arts?

JMAC karate student, Andrew, shares his greatest challenges in martial arts:

“Self-discipline and Focus. Being able to push through and exceed perceived physical and mental limitations.  As I age, I find myself hitting that wall earlier and the challenge is being able to work through that and push myself beyond what my mind tells me is my limit.”

What helps you push through? “I just do it. It’s also the energy of the people around me.  But, overall, I’m self-motivated. Practicing kata can be a very solitary thing.  I’ll practice over and over again, pushing myself beyond my limitations.”

“The other challenge is working through injury.” Andrew injured a hamstring twice but is now feeling better. He worked through the injury by “being cognizant of it, not pushing past the breaking point, not becoming stagnant, and not giving up.”

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Kids Karate: One Dad’s Take on His Daughters Training at JMAC

Kentaro, father of JMAC student Haruka, shares his thoughts on her training at JMAC:

“I have found that the way that they teach is very good and I’m very impressed with the instructors.”

“There have been some occasions where Haruka was invited to events at other martial arts schools and I found JMAC to be more organized and clean. It seems too, that the focus at JMAC is to teach kids martial arts in a manner that is fun for them without compromising safety and Japanese tradition. This is not always the case at other schools. It’s important that the kids are learning martial arts and not just playing.”

Read the entire interview here!

Kids Karate: Haruka Describes Her Training at JMAC

In an interview, JMAC student, Haruka, and her dad, Kentaro discuss training at JMAC. Haruka describes how her training has carried over into her everyday life:

“In school, it has helped me put a lot more focus and effort into one thing and to not procrastinate.  Although, I still procrastinate,” she adds.

“And, this is a basic thing”, she says, “when it gets cold and icy outside and I fall, with the practice of falling in class, I just fall easier and don’t hurt myself.”

“I think that even though it’s self-defense, it’s not just preparing for if someone attacks you, but more so about how you would mentally prepare yourself to work hard.”

“When I’m at karate class, it benefits me to watch not just what the teacher is doing, but how the teacher is teaching other students.  It’s an extra something when you get to understand what another student’s difficulty is as it helps you to better understand what you are doing.  When you understand what you are doing right, it helps you understand more of it. And watching other people in sparring, you notice their reactions, strengths, and weaknesses that you could use when you are sparring them.”

Read the entire interview here!

Playing Judo: This Dad Makes Martial Arts Fun for Kids!

“First, I have kids that age so I’m dialed in.  Second, we keep it fun and interesting with things they want to do at that age.  They love running around and we try to organize the chaos, we keep it simple where they are achieving things.” It’s obvious that Andy is passionate about this program as he continues “They get a big kick out of it.  They love judo tag, which is tag, but you have to do a movement before you get up! They love it!  They get all excited about all the different movements.  I think they like it because they are learning cool stuff and making progress.”

He thoughtfully adds, “Most of them have made a lot of progress – They have better focus, listening, and attention. And you can see the motor skills improving in all of them. We have some of our older students that are doing phenomenal! The improvement is very noticeable. They are almost ready to graduate to the kids karate or judo class.” 

I am JMAC: Andy’s Insights on the Importance of Breathwork in Martial Arts

“A commonality in all the arts is that the breathwork is so hard to do.  Until you have a solid mastery of technique it’s difficult to focus on breathing.  When you start moving around and doing randori, breathwork is out the window until it’s engrained. You have to be constantly aware of it.  It’s not easy.”

What are the benefits of breathwork? “It’s good for energy conservation.  I’ve noticed it in other arts like judo. People like Holland Sensei or Jackson Sensei who have a really good handle on their breathing and moving, waste so much less energy than us lesser mortals.” He breaks into a smile and continues, “It’s funny, while I’m gasping for breath they have slow easy breathing with their motions and a full energy reserve left.” He explains that “breathing is a huge way for them to relax, be more efficient with their movements, be more aware of what’s going on, maintain a better sense of control in self, and better presence in the moment.  This is why it’s so difficult to do, especially in that stressful situation. I’m thinking about where does my arm go?  Where am I going to get locked up or pinned next, and the breathing part isn’t engrained yet so I lose that very quickly.”
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