As a parent, why should you enroll your child in martial arts? What seems to draw people to our academy; Next Generation Martial Arts in Thibodaux, LA is "I don't want my child to be bullied." The term "Bully Prevention" has been marketed to create fear. It paints a picture saying, "your child will be a victim." Which scares parents, prompting them to seek training.
I remember three types of kids from childhood:
kids that were trouble makers
kids nobody started trouble with
kids that were picked on
By today's understanding:
trouble maker = bully
nobody starts trouble with = confident
picked on = victim
It's 100% accurate to say, no good parent wants their child to be; a trouble maker/bully, or picked on/victim. Every good parent wants their child to be a confident individual who doesn't run from their problems and knows how to handle confrontation.
When you say, "I want Bully Prevention" you are simply using a media/marketing derived term meaning, "I want my child to be a confident individual that knows how to deal with confrontation." You want your child to be "Comfortable With Conflict". This means you want your child to have the tools needed to deal with verbal and physical conflict. Whether you like it or not, conflict is a part of life. This will exist in social settings, work places, and relationships. In a sense you can say one's quality of life is improved or reduced by the way they handle conflict.
Comfort with conflict = comfortable in uncomfortable situations
This starts with Self Control.
Developing self control in children helps make them more:
We all want to know we can handle ourselves in confrontations. Naturally as parents, we want that for our kids as well. Knowing how to fight is not the answer to that problem. Being able to "fight" and having the self control to do otherwise, is.
Put your child in martial arts to cultivate their character. On the mats, while wearing their uniform; they will smile, laugh, and cry. At times you'll want to jump in and save them from their tears, DON'T. Allow them to struggle. Let them learn about themselves by pushing through boundaries. The reward of martial arts is seeing pride cover your child when they accomplish a goal through good ole fashioned hard work. Jumping in to save them will deprive you and your child of that feeling. Regardless of how they feel after any class, be there for emotional support to help them along this journey.
Allow martial arts to be the environment that teaches your child about life struggles, until the struggles of life aren't struggles at all.