Parents today think a lot about the health and well-being of their children. They want their sons and daughters to be healthy, strong, self-disciplined, responsible and proud. Too often, however, they see their children being inactive and influenced in negative ways by their peers or becoming prey to bullies.
The martial arts training at the Toronto Academy of Karate, Fitness and Health offers a careful balance of mental and physical challenge and fun in a safe, non-violent environment. This training helps to develop life-long skills including mental concentration, self-discipline, physical and spiritual strength, confidence, humility and respect for others.
Measuring the results
How can one measure the success of this training? Parents report that our karate training has taught their children to sit straight and stand tall. Young people acquire agility, strength and coordination. They develop confidence and self-discipline that they carry to school and through life. All this was clearly confirmed in a University of Toronto study on the Toronto Academy students published in Canada’s Mental Health (December 1984) and reprinted many times. Further research was conducted on our students in a study sponsored by the Hospital for Sick Children and the University of Toronto and published in 1995 in the United States scholarly magazine: Journal of Asian Martial Arts. Amongst other findings were enhancements in health, school performance and feelings of confidence and empowerment as well as a greater ability to relate to others.
But most of all, young people love the training and stay to become advanced belts. They make rapid progress in the art under enthusiastic and caring instruction, and both students and their parents take pride in their development. In fact, many parents are so pleased that they too join the dojo and train alongside their sons and daughters.