What age to start martial arts?
It is one of the provocative questions prevalent among parents, individuals, and self-defense schools.
Most parents have varied opinions – While some believe starting as early as possible is best, others think beginning too early can negatively impact a child. However, realistically, the answer to the question about – What age to start martial arts?
It boils down to the child, the form of martial arts, its philosophy, and other factors.
First, we will discuss the age stages step by step clubbed with their pros and cons to know – what age to start martial arts training is best.
Next, we will list down a few factors to consider when opting for your child’s martial arts training.
- 1 Beginning At An Early Age Between 3 & 7 Years
- 2 Beginning At The Age Between 8 -18 Years
- 3 Is There Such A Thing as Too Old?
- 4 Things to Keep in Mind When Selecting Martial Arts for Your Kid
- 5 Conclusion
Beginning At An Early Age Between 3 & 7 Years
Here, We Will Provide an Answer to The Query of Most Parents – Is There Such A Thing as Too Young?
Some parents who are highly inspired by martial arts and want their child to excel in this particular field decide on training their child as young as 3 years of age.
Such parents often fail to ask the question ‘Is there such a thing as too young?’ when they consider this sport for their child early.
With a mindset that early beginners achieve the most, they propel their child to move ahead into the martial arts field at a very early age.
While the pros are that they may easily learn to coordinate, balance, and instill discipline, the downside is they may get bored very easily as the child since the time he/she gained consciousness was not given a choice.
Thus, if you want your child to excel in this field and want them to train efficiently in their childhood, remember to wait until they are at least seven years old to choose this field of martial arts as per your recommendation.
Seven years is the minimum age set by most of the clubs – Just think, this minimum limit would have been set for a reason? Right?
Thus, note that yes, there exists something as ‘Is there such a thing as too young?’ when you consider martial arts. Being physically ready is more crucial than being mentally prepared when opting for this sport.
On the flip, as we know, today’s generation kids are way too advanced than the previous ones. They begin envisioning their dreams and passion.
Right from the beginning, they gain their communication and understanding skills. Thus, few may dream big of competing in the Olympics, but parents should note that even in this scenario, beginning at a later age will have zero drawbacks at this level.
Thus, do not worry about getting your kid into martial arts when they have just started to talk or walk.
Understand that there is a lot of time left, and it is best if the training decision comes from your child as they are the ones who will stay in this field.
Beginning At The Age Between 8 -18 Years
Here, We Will Provide an Answer to The Next Query of Most Parents – What Is the Best Age to Start?
Genuinely, ‘what is the best age to start martial arts training?’ is not the right question.
There stands no best age to begin martial arts training once you are 7 years of age. Age is only a count, and it has no link with this fantastic sport of martial arts. The sports itself has zero awareness about age.
However, the age between 8-18 years can be called a prudent age to give martial arts training a shot.
Kids of this age are more likely to get into learning martial arts, and the older ones especially can better understand the training in great depth about the tactics, philosophy, etc.
This age group’s drawback is that they easily get distracted by various things, especially when they move on to their secondary school. As per stats – the drop-off rate at this level is too high.
Thus, here comes the duty of the instructor to educate their student and keep them thoroughly engaged via incentives or competitions.
Is There Such A Thing as Too Old?
Most peeps perceive martial arts training to be a sport for young people only.
For instance, when Taekwondo is referred to as a kick art sport, many individuals instantly talk themselves out due to their lack of flexibility or general fitness.
However, note that the advantages of learning martial arts, exceptionally for adults, are vast. Discuss with any adult who is into martial arts training with an experienced trainer.
They will enlighten you that it has worked magically for them regarding their fitness, posture, anxiety, general health, outlook, confidence, way of life, etc.
For sure, you are never very old to learn and practice martial arts. Age is just a number that martial arts do not even understand.
Thus, the answer to the question ‘Is there such a thing as too old?’ is NO.
Those who are beginning their martial arts lesson at the age of 60 should know that they will learn a lot about balance, discipline, strength capability, etc., which is one of the worthwhile things to witness at that age.
Things to Keep in Mind When Selecting Martial Arts for Your Kid
Your Kid’s Development
The development rate of each kid varies. While few develop very quickly, others take a little time. However, ensure it is completely natural and fine.
Few may express their interest in martial arts at 4 years of age, while others may develop their interest in martial arts at 12. However, remember that not to enroll a child into the field of martial arts before they are 7 years of age.
As the time between the age of 3 and 7 is precious for all children, it is a time when they understand, realize, speak up, develop interest, etc.
Parents should allow them to explore their area of interest until they are 7 years old and then strike a discussion and plan out a move towards martial arts.
Moreover, children below the age of 7 might also not have the required motor skills to perfect kicks and punches. Thus, pushing your child before the age of 7 to learn martial arts may not come across to be as effective as most parents perceive it to be.
Instructor of Martial Arts
One of the advantages of learning martial arts is regarding the life lessons you absorb by participating.Thus, it is extremely important to meet up with the trainer before signing your kid up for it.
Well experienced trainers, preferably with a good background regarding early childhood education, would for sure insist on a personal meet before accepting the registration.
Communicate with him about different styles of martial arts and which one is he going to teach your child first.
Most must be wondering if they only knew karate and kung fu to be martial arts variants. However, this is not true.
Always Ensure to Communicate
As parents of your child, you would want your child to excel in all that he/she is doing. However, this type of mindset can go against their interest.
While it is crucial to succeed and be competitive, their safety, happiness, and wellbeing should be your major priority. Expect that they would succeed but do not put on sufficient pressure and create any peer burden.
Ensure young kids must live, relish, enjoy while they develop their sense of discipline and self.
Before enrolling them into martial arts training class, ensure to get their physical check-up done on priority. Also, discuss with your doctor/pediatrician whether it is safe for them to practice martial arts.
When a kid participates in any martial arts, parents’ greatest concern is any physical injuries from inappropriate and unsafe movement. Especially younger children are most susceptible to encountering it.
While for sure an active training or exercise plan is required, long term impact or damage in most cases can only happen if the child is not developmentally ready for martial arts.
Thus, to solve this issue, observe the program, and talk with parents of other kids in the waiting room regarding their take on this. Assess the environment and look out to strike interaction with other kids. Go by your instincts.
To sum up, and provide an answer to the question ‘What age to start martial arts?’
Remember, in martial arts, it is not about the age you begin your training at. It is all about taking the first step (when you are ready) towards it no matter what age you have reached in your life.