We often see martial arts as nothing more than learning self-defense. It’s no surprise, given the badassery that comes with doing muay Thai or mastering taekwondo.
What trainers from Michigan Academy of Taekwondo want to share with those who are new to the sport and those who are curious is more than just an exchange of arm thrusts and kicks.
Colin Osborn, Claire Fletcher, and Peter Clarke teach martial arts to children to boost their self-confidence. A lot of parents call them up to report incidents of bullying and mild threats toward their children. This inspired Osborn, Fletcher, and Clarke to start a Confident Kids program.
Kids who would apply for martial arts classes were struggling with their self-esteem and their social anxieties. Martial arts teach kids to be braver and more disciplined when it comes to facing challenges. As a result, their self-confidence skyrockets. According to Osborn, children who take martial arts lessons were improving significantly even in academic concerns.
Bruce Lee and Jet Li were famous icons of martial arts in popular culture. People applauded the two actors and awaited every film, but there was one thing that was noticeable about the martial arts phenomenon: there weren’t many women practicing them.
In America, practicing martial arts is a male-dominated area. These days, however, more and more women have been joining martial arts classes. Jessica Dobbs, a trainer, says that women who take her classes do so because they like the feeling of empowerment. Martial arts have become a way to get in shape, as well as a practice for a disciplined body and mind. Dobbs even mentions that it gives women the opportunity to feel comfortable even in the presence of men, urging them to get out of their comfort zones and take leadership roles.
Without martial arts, Dobbs remarks, she wouldn’t have gained her love for public speaking and teaching. It’s an empowering sport that transforms your fear into sheer fearlessness.