Armory, Self Defense, And EDC > Martial Arts, Unarmed Self Defense, Hand To Hand Combat, and Physical Fitness

Which Martial Arts for a 5yr old

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My son is starting Kindergarten this year.  He has expressed intrest in "Karate".  I know nothing really about the different schools of Martial Arts, so I am hoping that someone can shed some light on it for me. 

We have a Taekwondo and a Karate place with in a mile of each other, is there are huge difference in what style a youngster should start in?

karate is an even mixture of kicks, punches, blocks, and strikes. tae-kwon-do focuses more on kicking. you might also look into aikido if your kid like more circular defensive movements.

Check out what is in your area and get the vibe of the instructors.  Instructors are more important than the art in many respects.

But if you want an style...Judo.  The combination of standing throws, unbalancing techniques and ground fighting combined with teaching competitiveness and not being intimidated by close contact is a great place to start a youngster out.  It is fairly ubiquitous if you think you might move sometime also.

Stay away from anything requiring breaking boards or bricks. That comes back to haunt you when you are older. Tae Kwon Do does a lot of this.
Judo is also hard on the body, but good for the throws.
Karate, especially the Okinawan Shorin Ryu is very good. More upright and softer than Japanese karate.
Kung Fu has a lot of styles and can be more entertaining for youngsters and keeps their interest.
Wushu or modern Kung fu is much less practical and more competition and show oriented.
Aikido and jujitsu are other good options.
Much depends on the teacher, so watch a few classes first.

my kids took tai kwon do, but if I had to do it again at that age, I'd go for judo with kids to start with.


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