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Kickboxing Classes Lincoln

Mixed Martial Arts

Kickboxing Classes Lincoln

Even before the UFC popularized footage of men using martial arts techniques to bloody their opponents, the idea that martial arts might promote violence has been a major concern for people looking to get involved in kickboxing. It made sense to believe that in educating their students on how to punch and kick effectively, martial arts instructors would be implicitly teaching that violent behavior is acceptable and that being skillful at hurting others is even praiseworthy. Some parents and teachers worry that children who train in martial arts will be encouraged to use the harmful techniques they learn to hurt and bully other children. This long-held belief has prompted multiple studies on the effect that training martial arts can have on the aggressiveness of young children, and the results of these studies may surprise you.

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Instead of showing martial arts to have a negative effect on the violent tendencies of children, studies have consistently pointed to a reduced, rather than a raised, level of violence among children who train in these kinds of combat sports. One of the first studies carried out on the effect that martial arts training has on aggression was performed in 1981 by Dr. Nosanchuk. This researcher found, much to his surprise, that the longer a person had been training martial arts, the less aggressive they tended to be towards others. [i] This study was followed in 1986 by a study entitled “Martial Arts Training: A Novel “Cure” for Juvenile Delinquency,” By Michael E Trulson. Which concluded that the traditional elements of the martial arts training, including meditation, philosophy, an emphasis on respect, and memorized forms called katas, had a positive effect on at-risk youth who might otherwise be prone to aggression.

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The study demonstrated, among other things, that students who participated in the traditional martial art of Taekwondo for six months showed “decreased aggressiveness, lowered anxiety, increased self-esteem, [and] increased social adroitness” in comparison with students who participated in a regular exercise program that did not include martial arts training. The students in the exercise program, in fact, showed no significant improvement when it came to reducing their aggressive behaviors or increasing their self-esteem and social skills.

Kickboxing Classes Lincoln

Based on the results of the aforementioned studies and multitude of other research papers on the topic, some elementary schools have recently attempted to implement martial arts training as part of their school curriculum to try and cut down on the amount of bullying among their students. A 2008 study analyzing the results of one such program confirmed some of the earlier conclusions made about martial arts classes in previous articles. This study, entitled, “Effects of Participation in a Martial Arts- Based Ant bullying Program,” showed that third to fifth-year boys who participated in more sessions of their schools’ martial arts-based anti-bullying program were reported to have a lower frequency of aggressive behaviour as well as a higher frequency of helpful behaviour towards victims of bullying. The study attributed this change in the boys’ behavior to the way these classes taught “empathy, self-control, and peaceful strategies to resolve conflicts.

Kickboxing Classes Lincoln

It is natural for young boys to exhibit an increased level of aggression as they get older, but martial arts can help eliminate some of the more negative forms of aggression by providing an appropriate outlet for the children’s anger and hostility. Instead of hitting classmates on the playground or getting into fights with their siblings, growing boys can redirect their feelings of aggression by hitting punching bags or sparring with classmates in a controlled manner. Sparring with other martial arts students may seem to encourage peer violence in an age group that is already prone to hostile behaviour, but according to Jamie Seabrook author of “Martial Arts Revealed, Benefits, Problems Solutions” “When an instructor emphasizes respect and courtesy towards his students, sparring actually teaches students self-control and humility. Students learn to not swing wildly but to hit with only limited contact.”

Awareness

In other words, martial arts helps students to become masters of their own natural aggressive tendencies by teaching them how to handle their bodies in a controlled manner. Having better body awareness and a sense of control over their own aggression helps students to eliminate inappropriate violence towards others.

Kickboxing Classes Lincoln

Kickboxing classes Lincoln can also help reduce violence among children by instilling a sense of confidence in them. Children often fight because they want to feel powerful or prove themselves in some way. Being able to command and manipulate other children through aggression and intimidation helps young boys especially to feel more in control of their surroundings when they are suffering from feeling helpless or weak. Very often, however, this kind of violent behavior only serves to decrease the confidence of the victim of the aggressive child without significantly increasing his own. Training in combat sports, on the other hand, increases a child’s level of confidence by increasing his awareness of his inner power and strength and providing him with skills that make him feel safer and more in control of his own person.

Empowerment

This prevents the child from feeling the need to get into fights with other children in order to mask an underlying sense of insecurity or powerlessness. When children gain empowerment through martial arts, they become better equipped to avoid their “tense, defensive reactions to pressure and conflict which so often only create more violence” and to walk away from conflict instead of further aggravating a situation. This renewed sense of self-control and confidence, therefore, decreases a child’s tendency towards violence and teaches him to step away from his habit of fighting to direct his energy towards more worthwhile pursuits.

Kickboxing Classes Lincoln

Hopefully, now that you have seen the evidence, you are convinced that martial arts training does not lead to the increased levels of aggression that some have mistakenly associated with it. But along with ensuring that your child does not hurt others, you also want to make sure that he is not going to hurt himself. A common misconception parents tend to have about martial arts classes is that they have a high rate of injury and are therefore dangerous for children to participate in. When parents envision children punching and hitting each other in class, it is understandable that they become worried about their children’s safety, but the reality is that children are much more likely to hurt themselves while rollerblading than they are by participating in a martial arts class. In 2003, the Scottish Medical Journal published an article in which they analyzed the number of sports injuries seen in children in the Accident & Emergency Department of a certain hospital over a three-month period of time.

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According to this article, a large majority of the sports injuries observed were obtained by children while playing football or rollerblading, with rugby, basketball, and school physical education also causing a fair amount of damage.[vi] Out of the two hundred thirty-eight sport-related injuries treated at the hospital during the time frame of the study, only two per cent were a result of martial arts training. This is less than half the amount of injuries that occurred as a result of ice skating or cycling, both of which are activities that most parents would feel completely comfortable allowing their children to participate in.

Kickboxing Classes Lincoln

Children training in organized martial arts programs are under the strict supervision of their sensei and his or her assistants, and in striking sports, they are usually required to wear protective gear that helps prevent injury. A retrospective study done on children and adolescents who participated in a karate class found that of the sixty-eight students surveyed, none had received injuries critical enough to inhibit their participation in the class for any period of time. Twenty-eight per cent of these students sustained some kind of minor injury while training, but these injuries consisted mostly of bruises with only a few students obtaining minor sprains and strains.[vii] The conclusion of this study was that karate is a safe sport for children to participate in as long as the proper protective equipment is worn and the children are adequately supervised.

Kickboxing Classes Lincoln

The perceived violence and danger of martial arts have also added to another misconception about the sport, which is that it is not an activity for girls. The idea is that because girls are not naturally as aggressive as boys, they will not be interested in a sport that involves punching, kicking, and wrestling. This mentality has unfortunately prevented many girls from becoming involved in an activity that has as many, if not more, benefits for them as it has for their male peers. Parents tend to enroll their sons in martial arts classes more frequently than their daughters, and even when girls do participate in combat

[i] Nosanchuk, T. A. (1981). The way of the warrior: The effects of traditional martial arts training on aggressiveness. Human Relations, 34, 435 – 444.

[ii] Trulson, M. E. (1986). Martial arts training: A novel “cure” for juvenile delinquency. Human Relations, 39, 1131 – 1140.

[iii] Twemlow, S., Biggs, B., Nelson, T., Vernberg, E., and Fonagy, P. (2008). Effects of participation in a martial arts–based antibullying program in elementary schools, Psychology in the Schools 45(10), 947-959.

[iv] Seabrook, Jamie A. Martial Arts Revealed: Benefits, Problems, and Solutions. New York: IUniverse, Inc, 2003.

[v] Aikido Association of America. “About Us.” 2010. http://www.aaa-aikido.com/aboutus.htm

[vi]Boyce, Stephan and Quigley, Micheal. “An Audit Of Sports Injuries In Children Attending An Accident & Emergency Department.” SMJ 2003 48(3): 88-90 http://smj.org.uk/0803/sport.htm

[vii] Zetaruk, M N, M A. Violan, D Zurakowski, and L J. Micheli. “Karate Injuries in Children and Adolescents.” Accident Analysis and Prevention. 32.3 (2000).

 

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