We had a special class today where we invited all the parents in class to work with their child on basic martial arts and fitness drills and helped them be a better coach for their own child. All the kids had fun and it was good to see the parents and kids get some bonding time working on drills together.
Whether or not a parent has any martial arts experience, they are still able to be excellent coaches for their kids with their martial arts training. At Tanny Academy of Martial Arts
we teach parents various tips for helping their kids when training at home. Mom or Dad may not be able to demonstrate all the Taekwon-do techniques, but attending all those classes and watching their son or daughter practice a pattern or self defense technique over and over really help them also learn to recognize some of the movements and techniques and what to look for.
For a student to maximize their training, they should be practicing their patterns, self defense and techniques at home a few times a week spending 5-15 minutes each practice session, more if they are able to dedicate the time and effort.
With kids especially, parents should supervise all home training and practice sessions to avoid any injuries for your child.
How can I help my son/daughter with their home training?
If you have a hand pad, body shield or some type of padded martial art target, you can hold the pad for your child to practice their basic techniques. Learn to count 1-10 in Korean with your child so they get the practice as well. If you don't have a pad to use, try a small pillow or your hand. You can also have your child practice their kicks and punches in the air and just watch their technique.
When helping them practice their technique, watch for these details:
1. Correct technique
- is it a front kick, side kick, reverse punch, etc. Are they showing the correct form, chamber, etc when executing the technique? Good technique is always more important than showing power and speed.
2. Correct part of the foot/hand
- are they using the correct part of the foot or hand for the technique?
3. Correct level/target
- How high or low should the technique be? What is the intended target?
4. Good balance and control
- They should maintain a proper center of gravity when executing the technique and show good balance and control with their technique
5. Proper breathing
- Make sure your child doesn't hold their breath during a technique. They should properly exhale when striking or kicking. Help them to stay relaxed, focused and calm, but in control.
6. Have fun!
Using these 6 simple steps, parents can help their child train at home to improve their martial arts techniques. Although eventually it will be the student who tests for and earns his/her black belt, parents play a big role in the success of their kids, from taking them to Taekwon-do class, to watching them progress through the program and earn higher belt ranks, to being supportive of their training. Being a good coach is more than just learning how to hold a pad or correct a technique. Being a good coach also involves constantly offering praise, understanding and moral support for your child too and helping to reinforce the life skills and lessons they learn in the dojang at home.