As I have shared before, Karate was the best thing that we did for Liam, as an extracurricular activity. It certainly was his Sensei who made a difference, but also everything that he learned in the program: discipline, listening, strength, confidence.
He worked hard and saw that his efforts paid off when he got stripes on his belt, or moved up to a new belt color. There were very clear expectations for him and a clear path to success.
Also, there were many other kids there who were awkward and in need of positive feedback about a challenging activity. While there were plenty who were athletic and skilled, the structure of the program kept everything focused and positive – kids worked to support each other at all times.
Liam grew in his balance, coordination, and strength during these two plus years. We are very thankful for all that this program did for him.
Kieran also had a positive experience, but maybe not in the same way.
For him, we worked on focus, attention, and compliance. I remember one practice where he refused to listen to directions. He sat down in the middle of the session and wouldn’t move or do anything he was asked to do.
I actually went out onto the floor and physically removed him. In this, though, I sent a clear message: you need to listen and comply. For Kieran, this was a much needed skill. I’m happy to say that he worked toward more of this as he continued. He needed karate, but for different reasons – mostly discipline. It also helped him grow his patience.