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    Kids in martial arts.

    How soon should kids be exposed to martil arts?

    When I decided to pick up my martial arts training again, I enrolled my 6-year old son in the school. They have a childrens program and I figured it'd be something to do together, as well as exposing him early to martial arts. His classes tend to deal with broader goals such as developing balance, fitness, discipline, etc and so far I don't have a problem with it. However, I have noticed on recent threads a general disdain for children in MA schools. So how young is too young?

    #2
    The problem only arrises when kids train with adults.

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      #3
      I don't think anyone has problems with kids training at any age really (assuming they train in a kid's class, with kid's belts). The beef seems to be when they are awarded frivilous black belts, and how McDojos have a tendancy to go for the kids market to drain the parents.

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        #4
        I suppose the kid should be old enough to retain at least some of the concepts and techniques he is exposed to. I started at 8, and I never thought that was a bad thing.
        That civilisation may not sink,
        Its great battle lost,
        Quiet the dog, tether the pony
        To a distant post;
        Our master Caesar is in the tent
        Where the maps are spread,
        His eyes fixed upon nothing,
        A hand under his head.


        - W.B. Yeats

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          #5
          I usually wont take a student under 8 years old. Some may not be mature enough to retain the info and be attentive enough in class so that others can learn. JMO

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            #6
            Depneds on how the kids behavior is. Theres nothing bad about kids training in the martial arts.

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              #7
              At the judo place I trained at, kids were mixed in with adults. I suppose it was a confidence builder for the kids, and taught the adults... how to throw themselves.
              Plus the one kid was the instructor's grandson and was a f'n beast when it came to judo pushups.

              However, in the current school I would be incredibly uncomfortable if for some reason we combined kids'(15 & under) and adults' classes. You can't quite condition them the same way, can't drill for speed the same way, can't really train seriously in the case of the small ones because they really seem to think of it more as a game than "Let's make this work on Anyone." In judo you could randori the same with an adult partner, just keeping in mind not to fall on the anklebiters.

              It's hard to put a number on "too young" though, because it depends on the kid. I've seen five year olds have more maturity and determinatioin when training than twelve year olds. With the risk of sounding pretensious, I'd say to seriously and honestly look at your kid and evaluate where they are emotionally and mentally. Do you think they can handle it? If so, go for it. If they prove otherwise, give it a year or two.
              my 2 cents...

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                #8
                As discussed over the last couple of days, this is too young.
                http://www.bullshido.net/forums/show...threadid=16050

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                  #9
                  I started at age 7 and I believe it is good to start young. You will learn technique and discipline that will benefit your future development in MA.

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                    #10
                    Does your son WANT to do it?
                    It's all moot if it's your choice rather than his.

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                      #11
                      My kids are in the kids class at my school. It isn't any particular art. The instructor uses belts and stripes to give the kids something to work for. The techniques taught in the class are the basics from all of the adult classes. They don't spare and beat the shit out of each other. For the most part there punching air when there not going over grappling moves. This might seem lame to others but they are just kids. After drilling the body mechanics until they are second nature, when they move up to the adult class they are more than ready to "kick ass." Case in point, 2 kids, brother and sister, that have been in the kids class for 5 years, recently realized that they were ready to move up. They joined the BJJ adult class and are spearing through the very early belt rankings because they already have put in the time and know the required manuevers. I told my kids they need to stay in the kids class until they are a freshman in high school, then the can pick what ever art the desire and move to the adult class.

                      As for how young is too young, that depends on both the instructor and the student. There is a younger kid in our kids class that I think the instructor is regreting. Personally I couldn't handle any kid under 8 on average, but like I said it depends on the kid.

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                        #12
                        Yes, put your kid in martial arts, in fact force him into martial arts. They'll thank you for it later. I would stick with a striking art, however, as they are simpler, and also your kid will thank you for being so fit and fast. I was forced into martial arts at 8 years old. I didn't like it. I didn't care about it. But my balance, and strength did improve, in addition to some things I don't have to waste time on now that I'm older.

                        The biggest thing kids should concentrate on is coordination, balance, strength, stamina, speed, and various things. Basic techniques also, but save the more advanced techniques for later.

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                          #13
                          ^^Agreed start them with basic kicks and forms then once they get older incoropate sparring, grappling, and throwing. And supernotme where do you live in PA?

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                            #14
                            Put your kid in those gymnastic stuff people do at the olympic games, man, those guys have some serious strength in their arms, or its just some complicated physics I dont understand

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                              #15
                              Might I ask which martial art? I started doing Muay Thai at 5, fighting at 8 and right now, all I can say is that my body hurts.

                              and that would be a large understatement

                              Unlike many of the people here, I suggest wrestling to build stamina,strength, and muscular endurance.
                              Last edited by MM4Guy; 9/02/2004 7:16pm, .

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