Confidence Martial Arts knows that self-control is something every person struggles with on a daily basis. For some people its just little things, were others its a real every day struggle. It could be to get up out of bed on time, or to not eat that second piece of cake, or getting your housework done, or even making sure you get in your daily trip to the gym. By definition self-control is the control of one’s emotions, desires, or actions by one’s own will. Self-Control is one of the most valuable skills to have as an adult, which is why it it best to teach to our kids early! Children with little Self-Control are more likely to have aggressive behaviors, they are also more likely to experience anxiety and depression. Long term these kids also have a much higher rate of being obese, smoking, being dependent on drugs and alcohol, they are less likely to become wealthy and have shorter life spans. So how do we parents instill self-control into our children to make them better, happier, healthier, more successful adults? Here are a few ways, here at Confidence Martial Arts, that we are teaching kids self-control through our Karate for Kids Programs: 1. Goal Setting. We help our students to learn how to set SMART goals to focus on the future. Our various ranks, belts, programs, and escalating challenges for our kids teaches students from a very young age to learn to achieve something over time. We remind students of the goals they set (becoming a black belt or achieving their next rank) and encourage them to work hard towards that goal. Want a black belt? The only way to get there is by exercising self-control and making sacrifices in the present…to create a better future. Instead of sitting on the couch watching TV or playing video games, you need to get to class, stick to your commitments, and practice your skills. 2. Control Aggression. Kids who engage in martial arts training are simply less violent than kids who don’t because that training provides a healthy outlet for stress, it builds self-confidence, and it nurtures self-esteem. The most important reason karate students are less violent is because we stress self-control. From the first day students walk into our doors we stress to them they may only use the martial arts in 3 place: here with their instructors, at home but only with a parents permission, or if they need to defend themselves, and it is never to be used to hurt anyone, but to help others and ourselves. 3. Physical Self-Control. This is accomplished when we simulate combat through sparring, and doing self-defense techniques. We make it clear the goal is not to harm your opponent. Instead, you want to score points. This helps students develop control in the “heat of the moment” and they learn to hold back. You can usually see the difference in the way color belts spar as opposed to black belts. Color belts are usually much rougher than black belts because they have had as many years of experience yet, where black belts have had more time to develop greater physical self control. 4. Focus Attention. Many recent studies have proven martial arts training boosts homework completion, academic performance, and classroom participation. On the other hand, martial arts decreases the number of classroom rules broken, times inappropriately leaving the seat, and “call-outs” in class. In fact, many parents of ADD / ADHD and Autistic children consistently say that Karate for Kids is the best decision they ever made for their child. 5. Making the Right Choices. Confidence Martial Arts teaches students how to avoid peer pressure, drinking, smoking and other dangerous behavior. Karate is NOT just about keeping your child safe physically or in a self-defense situation. Good judgment can prevent your child from a sticky situation and needed to use the self-defense techniques in the first place. Developing self-control doesn’t happen overnight. Like any life skill, it takes time. However, we believe when our students possess a strong “core” of self-control, they’ll do a lot better in life. With all the evidence you’ve seen so far, don’t you agree self-control is a huge success ingredient in life? Could you think of any greater investment to make on your child? It’s never to late to start karate today!