I wanted to take some time and explain why practicing at home is so valuable!
Here are some of the benefits of carving some time out and practicing at home!
The average 7 to 9 year old tends to struggle with sequences of moves that require the use of fine motor skills. Our school utilizes self-defense techniques that are meant to challenge this stage of their development so that the student is able to learn, grow, and apply the appropriate movements.
Repetition at home is a great way to build that muscle memory that is required to physically perform the techniques in a manner that will make them function in a real self-defense situation!
This age group also finds it challenging to focus on things that are difficult and sometimes they will “over-think” what is being asked of them. The instructors typically will run into this when we are running the students through their forms! You do not have to practice an entire form to begin to see the benefits. Even running through a short string of combinations helps them build a better working knowledge of their forms!
Another BIG bonus associated with at home training is a boost in confidence. This age group will tend to show excessive fear if asked to do something brand new in front of an audience or put in the spotlight. Having parents and friends as a familiar audience will help them build up and prepare them to be AMAZING!
Lastly, when practicing at home they are bound to run into challenges that may frustrate them to no end! It is in these situations, you will have a valuable opportunity to teach them how to address these challenges in socially acceptable ways! You may notice that they project their frustrations outward which may interfere with the current drill or cause other students to become uncomfortable. We now have the opportunity to coach them to “Take a Breath”, “Count to 10”, or “Change your focus and come back to this later”.
In conclusion, practicing at home is not solely about repetitious movements. It is a valuable opportunity for them to learn and grow as individuals. Working with their parents, being able to receive coaching advice that extends beyond the Martial Arts, all while learning to nurture a mindset that encourages self-improvement are what work together to be the driving forces behind “practice”!