Not all dojos are able offer a children’s class, but where they can there are good reasons to encourage your child to practise Aikido.
- Aikido is a non-aggressive martial art. What does this mean? Basically, you can’t start a fight with Aikido – you can only finish one. Aikido doesn’t encourage children to go around punching and kicking; instead, the technique starts when someone else “breaks the rules”.
- Aikido provides plenty of healthy exercise in a safe environment, and so helps childrens’ bodies to develop correctly.
- The children also learn to develop calm and clear minds. Of course, children shouldn’t be calm all the time. They need to let off steam! But Aikido gives them the choice. If they need to sit still at school, concentrate on homework, or focus during sports, Aikido shows them exactly how to do that. The techniques will teach correct calmness. This is different from keeping their emotions bottled up. Aikido calmness feels good.
- Aikido does not rely on size, speed or gender. Actually, if they use their bodies correctly, it is possible for children to throw adults.
- Learning new skills and achieving success will help children to develop self-confidence. This is all done in a supporting, non-threatening environment where they learn almost without realising it.
- There is no competition in Aikido. The children take turns throwing and being thrown. In that way, they learn that it is always better to work together.
- Aikido is fun! There is a lot of rolling around, stretching, and a practical martial art all taught in a friendly, welcoming environment.
Children’s Aikido instructors in the British Ki Society are all qualified Coaches and have been DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) checked.