Autism and Judo
My son is 5 years old and had autism.Can he learn Judo?
I have the goal to when he is 7 years old to learn Judo, but is this possible? Do you had any experience whit special people in your dojo?
Thank you very much.
Depends on how severe is his autism, but there are judo teachers that work with autistic children and adults. You should contact your federation and see if they can refer you to somebody in your area.
You may find these threads helpful, after my initial misgivings it turned into quite a productive and useful thread:
Originally Posted by Geofa
I personally have no experience with working with kids or anyone with, medically diagnosable, psychological issues - definitely met some lunatics in my time though - so will bow out after this and leave it to those with experience.
However, as a general guide you will need a patient and understanding Judo coach and lots of communication with them.
We actually have an mma program geared towards younger children on the spectrum in our city.
Originally Posted by Geofa
Generally, kids can react differently, they can get overwhelmed with the noise and activity. But I've seen kids do well regardless of whether they are more midrange or go into the realm of Aspergers.
In my Judo class we had a guy with some level of Autism, never figured out how much.
Obviously the level of autism is important, but I can tell you I've met a kid who handled it well enough.
There was a thread on the website a while back about grappling and mental issues, you can try searching for it I don't remember what it was called, I'll try finding it if you can't.
It might be a good idea, but check the instructor out well, and get a feel for the group first, to see if it fits your child's needs.
A lot of autistic (as well as ADD/ADHD) children
do quite well in individual activities like ma, and
swimming, but not so well in group/team activities
(baseball, volleyball, football, soccer, etc.).
Judo should be fine, as long as the instructor is
aware of the limitations/challenges/needs of the
type and level of autism present. Most individual
pursuits challenge the autistic child at it's core -
needing sustained focus, and also gives it's own
immediate rewards. Martial arts practice is like that.
My sister finally got my niece away from the team
sports her sisters play (which always made her very
frustrated and angry). I talked her into trying ma.
After trying out a few classes, we found one she felt
comfortable in (the biggest class - go figure), and in
the six months she's been there, she has improved at
almost the normal rate for her age (12), and has even
excelled in sparring!
She has since started swimming, which she also does
well in. I think bowling may be next? Even her school
work is steadily improving. Her tutors have even started
to re-integrate her into her normal class activities as
she improves in her concentration and learning skills.
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