And just like that, Halloween and the first two months of the brand new school year are over. The challenges this academic year will bring for your child – new school, different teacher, academic trouble, changing social group, bullying, time management – are becoming more apparent. So, the question becomes how can you give your child the skills to face and conquer these obstacles? Tutor? Workbooks? Extra reading? Playdates? OT? The answer: martial arts.
The latest trends in educational research reveal what a child brings to the classroom matters just as much as what the classroom can offer them. Mindset and attitude are the greatest predictors of success. That’s right, mindset and attitude. Building and fostering both are the foundation of what we do here at DHAC Martial Arts. We often ask our students what words, beginning with the letter “L”, embody what they do at karate. As you might imagine the chorus of response usually begins with listen and learn. Listening skills, gaining the ability to focus without distraction, and the self-discipline it takes to do this, are a staple of martial arts training. Beyond the how-to of punches, kicks, techniques, and forms, our students learn to take a hit both physically and emotionally. They learn the resiliency and commitment it will take to face challenges outside the walls of the studio. In a culture more and more defined by instant gratification and participation trophies, the value of earning what you learn and the sense of pride and accomplishment gained in doing so are often lost. Our students discover the joy of and love for the journey persistence and hard work creates. They learn it is okay to fail, and how even failure can be a positive thing. They learn to dare to make mistakes, to stand up for themselves, and to do what is necessary to help themselves succeed in any situation. So, when we push them to think a bit further on those “L” words, we get laugh, loyalty, inevitably a left hook or two, but we always land on love – most importantly, the love for oneself. This love gives the self-confidence to attack any challenge with the mindset and attitude to be successful.
To learn more about our Martial Arts programs at Dedham Health, visit our website, here.
We look forward to seeing you or your child in our Martial Arts studio.
-Cynthia Saul, Assistant Director of DHAC Martial Arts
Kids’ Night is a great introductory opportunity for your child to explore a new activity or program here at DHAC! Parents enjoy some well-deserved time to yourselves while the children participate in three hours of active fun with friends and DHAC’s experienced instructors. We host rock climbing adventures, laser tag games, masterpiece painting, and so much more!
This Friday’s Kids’ Night theme is Mad Science! Miniature mad scientists will work through wacky experiments making their own bouncy balls, creating rainbow drops, and strength testing spaghetti! Reserve your spot in advance to join us this Friday, November 3rd from 5 – 8 pm for all the exciting experiments, swimming, and a pizza dinner too! (Ages 5 – 12 years).
Be sure to check out the Kids’ Night Schedule for a complete list of dates and activities!
My First Camp Director
- Improvement of coordination
- Decreased chance of obesity
- Improved oxygen delivery to muscles
3. Well Being: Swimming is beneficial to the growth of an individual’s mental health. While engaging in physical activities, endorphins in the body are activated. Endorphins give people the sense of happiness and can act as a “natural pain killer”. Through swimming, people are able to trigger these endorphins and be naturally happier.
Please be safe in the water.
-Chris D., Aquatics Director at Dedham Health
It was November 2011, the day after Thanksgiving, my wife looked at me and said the two scariest words…”I’m pregnant.” Silence… gulp, that’s great! I’m going to have another piece of Thanksgiving pie and ponder my life being over. I found it hard to digest the word “dad” when it was said by friends and family after telling them the good news. But over the next nine months, I found time to set guidelines as to how we wanted to raise our kids. The first and foremost for me, being an older father, was not to be an out of shape, sedentary dad. I want to impart the importance of an active lifestyle on my kids by modeling this behavior in our family life.
There are two main areas that us dads should cover to get the most out of exercise.
1. Unstructured physical activity with your kids.
Free play such as running around your yard or taking the kids to the playground. Do not sit on the bench to watch, get involved and run around with your children. Take them hiking, bicycling, shore line fishing (requires some walking usually) shoot hoops, play catch, wiffle ball, etc. Dads, you have to become a kid again! Teach, play, show the neighborhood kids how to organize a wiffle ball or kickball game. Yard work and daily chores are also considered physical activity and create an understanding of responsibility.
2. Structured physical activity, which can include:
a. Dad’s workout time, we should all be getting a few hours a week of alone exercise time for ourselves
b. Kids should have some form of structured activity depending on age. I believe we should have them experience a team sport and an individual sport. Variety is key at the youth age. Martial Arts and swimming are two individual activities that are not only fun but can be lifesaving skills. Martial Arts is a great option for an individual sport. Many of the Martial Arts participants that I teach during the day at work are whole families. This allows parents and children to practice outside of the classroom as a family.
c. If you have a dog, choose to walk it with your kids at the same time everyday and spend time talking about how the day went or the day ahead.
The unstructured activity can cost absolutely nothing, and the pay back in experience and life lessons to you and your child will be priceless.
Becoming a Dad has changed my life in so many ways. Some for the good, and some that drive me insane, but there is nothing better than having my two boys look up at me and say “Daddy, look how strong I am, look how fast I can run, check out my pushups!” When my boys want to put down their electronics and go for a walk, help me carry the canoe to the lake, or just spend time outdoors, there is literally nothing I’d rather do.
Happy Father’s Day! Think my wife will let me go fishing alone for a few hours this weekend?!
– Guy Caracciolo, Fitness Director at Dedham Health