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Will Martial Arts Help My Child Make Friends?

By Jessica Militello

Children stand ready in a martial arts class while one boy looks directly at the camera.Martial arts has many benefits including learning self-defense, getting regular physical activity, and learning Bruce Lee’s teachings while training in Jeet Kune Do.

But one benefit that both adults and children gain from their training is camaraderie and friendship, especially if you train on a regular basis and stick with the same art for years. 

Here are some really great benefits from making friends at a martial arts school.

Learning with training partners

One of the best things about martial arts training is that students are paired with partners each class. This is a great way for children, especially those who are more shy, to have the chance to work with others and eventually get more comfortable in sharing common interests and building a bond as classmates. Students end up being paired with different classmates over time, so they have the chance to get to know their classmates individually during the class, instead of being overwhelmed by a group of classmates at once which can sometimes make kids get self-conscious.

Socializing is important for childhood development

Humans can only get so much from virtual interaction; people are intended to be around others, in person, which helps them get better at their own communication skills as well as boosts happiness through having meaningful relationships with others. When children are taught to work with others in class and have conversations with their peers, it is a skill they learn for life, and it helps them learn how to approach other kids and learn the importance of having meaningful relationships in their lives.

Training with new and experienced students

It’s great when there are several kids who join the school around the same time, because they start their martial arts journey together and bond over that. As students continue their training, they also learn how to help newer students and support each other. Martial arts is ultimately about becoming a better person, and students bonding in this way, by growing and learning from and with each other is an amazing benefit for young people. 

Building confidence that helps you make friends

In order to make friends, you need to have some confidence in yourself in order to reach out to others and talk with fellow students. Kids get to learn a brand new skill from training, and watch themselves continually get better over time, which boosts their happiness and confidence by seeing their progression and overcoming challenges in learning something new. Confidence is an important fundamental in any aspect of life, but especially in believing in yourself to talk to others and make friends. 

The art’s values in being a good person

Martial arts is not just about kicking and punching; Bruce Lee had tons of philosophy about using the art to learn how to constantly refine yourself and be a good person. When kids learn the importance of values such as discipline, self-control, and patience it helps to establish a great foundation of morals that will stay with them throughout their upbringing that will help them to learn good self-esteem which will help them to choose good people for their lives. When you learn right from wrong, and the value in being true to yourself, it will help kids to have good standards and only allow those with who can match those values into their life.