An activity vs. a lifestyle
An activity is something you do.
A lifestyle is something that you experience.
Martial arts is not meant to be an activity, a time slot in a string of other activities. It’s not a drop-off and learn something and then leave kind of an activity.
Unfortunately many people who quit do so because they look at martial arts as an activity. It’s something to add to the schedule and then remove it, almost like a menu item. It was pizza night, then stromboli night, then hoagie night. No moral or long-lasting benefit to one vs the other. It’s a one-time meal.
But martial arts is more like a lifetime of healthy eating for your mind, body and soul. It’s not a mindless, forgettable bowl of cereal. It takes time to invest in a healthy lifestyle and it takes commitment to get a confident child. Martial arts provides the foundation for strength and integrity, and it can’t be replaced by anything else.
Martial arts is best when practiced in conjunction with other pursuits, such as instruments or sports or arts or academics or trades. Martial arts is a thread that builds ability in all areas of life.
When you make it a lifestyle, you don’t quit for some other activity. You are observant of your surroundings. You remember to speak up for yourself. You take the stairs. You look the teacher in the eyes. You’re respectful to the coach. Your training regiment ebbs and flows. Some months are highs and some are lows, but you’re always making progress toward your goals.
Those benefits are a worthwhile lifestyle, not a bookmark in between school and video games. The best way to make it a lifestyle is to make it a family activity. Encourage, enjoy and join in on your child’s martial arts journey.
Once you have the mindset of martial arts as a lifestyle, you’ll be one step closer to a Black Belt in parenting.