Taekwondo: A Positive Influence for a Confused Generation
You’ve seen a kid without direction in life. You watch their drive, which at such a young age is boundless as the sea, but they have nothing on which to focus their attention, which can lead to destructive behaviors and “acting out.” This is one of the biggest reasons that parents push their children to join clubs and attend extracurricular activities whenever possible. A pursuit of martial arts might be a slightly more intense and off the wall idea, but many parents and guardians whose children attend such classes often times rave about the benefits it provides the kids.
Confidence Born of Safety
Everybody wants to see their children happy, confident and—most importantly—safe. As a result, the thought of putting kids into what seems to be a fighting class often scares parents away; if that were the true point of martial arts, this would be a well-founded concern. However, as martial arts genius Sōke Masaaki Hatsumi once said, “I’m not here to teach you how to fight, I’m here to teach you how to control evil.” Taekwondo isn’t about fighting, it’s about instilling a sense of discipline and capability.
The style of Taekwondo both tempers and soothes the fire in students of all ages, allowing them to feel confident in their ability to take care of themselves; in learning that skill, they also become more capable and driven people by pulling from the discipline and respect that has kept the art form alive for so long. More than just the ever useful skill of self-defense, students of this martial art learn alongside others working the same forms and matches as themselves, giving them a network of peers that they may not be able to obtain at school or other activities.
Respect, Concentration and a Healthy Outlet
What many people don’t realize is that Taekwondo doesn’t even remotely resemble defense methods and fighting forms that originate in western culture. Every lesson learned in a Taekwondo class is based on actual history; each time that the class meets, the same theories of patience, discipline, respect and concentration are handed down. This engrains these values in each student’s mind so completely that lessons provide more than just skills in hand-to-hand combat: they provide a whole new and better way of life.
Students who study this physical art form, especially children, undergo a transformation from overactive or even troubled individuals to people with a sense of propriety, responsibility and respect. Studies show that students who train in Taekwondo are also less aggressive, as they have a healthy and hard-hitting physical activity into which they can channel their energy while building self-esteem and teaching valuable life skills.
Taekwondo isn’t just a martial art, it isn’t just a physical activity for children with boundless energy, it’s a way to gain or reclaim a sense of control over one’s own life. It offers guidance and positivity for students of all ages, from all walks of life, and helps them to be the kind of people of which everyone can be proud.