The link between autism and martial arts has been given a lot of academic attention in the past few years. Researchers who are in perpetual search for therapeutic activities and strategies that will help autistic children have started projecting martial arts as a positive solution to the condition. Interestingly, what many martial arts schools had learnt through witnessing and experiencing is being scientifically proven these days.
The Many Miracles of Martial Arts: How Martial Arts Help Autistic Kids
If you are wondering how martial arts can be a positive change in the life of someone you know who has been diagnosed within the autistic spectrum, here are some pointers:
- Physical Benefits: One significant characteristic of autistic children are the compulsive and repetitive movements which are clinically termed stereotypy. Stereotypic behavior helps autistic children to feel secure and safe while interacting with the world. It would be unnatural and damaging if they are forcefully stopped. However, studies have shown that since martial arts involve a lot of repetitive, regular and structured movements, autistic martial art learners rely less on stereotypical behavior. This does not come in a forced way, but as a natural and safe means of directing kids away from stereotypy. Responding to external cues and reacting to them during martial art lessons will further help autistic children to improve their motor planning and coordination.
- Mental Benefits: Martial arts reduce stress in general. They help an individual to achieve emotional stability and gain a sense of self. These benefits can be enjoyed to a large extend by autistic kids as well. Many autistic kids also suffer from lack of self-confidence and improperly developed sense of self and self-worth. Martial arts help children in the autistic spectrum to manage these aspects of one’s life and gain mastery over the turbulence that mark their everyday struggles.
- Social Benefits: Autistic children have inherent difficulty in picking up social cues and behaving in social situations. Martial arts classrooms are a space where they can come across opportunities for amiable social interaction without upsetting their inner balance. The interaction with the teachers, and the activities which require them to collaborate with or cooperate with peers are all helpful in picking up social skills. All these can help autistic children to improve their social life.
Martial Arts for Special Needs at Bruce McCorry’s Academy
As a learner with special needs works on martial arts for a considerable amount of time, their autistic tendencies and the imbibed martial art strategies arrive at a symbiotic correlation, where martial art will considerably help to manage autistic symptoms and tendencies. Although a total cure for autism may not be a reality, martial arts is one of the farthest you can go in improving the quality of life of a child in the autistic spectrum.
If you are interested in introducing your specially abled child to a program where they will be taught martial arts in a professional and sensitive manner, Bruce McCorry’s Academy (Peabody, MA) could be a place to choose. At Bruce McCorry’s Academy, professional martial art instructors impart customized lessons for children with special needs, keeping in mind their particular capabilities, needs and conditions.
Bruce McCorry's Martial Arts
220 Newbury St
Peabody MA 01960
Phone: (978) 535-7878