How to Teach Children Karate

by Jeffrey Norman
Teaching karate to children requires you to focus on the basics of the sport.

Teaching karate to children requires you to focus on the basics of the sport.

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Karate is one of the martial arts enjoyed by participants both young and old. Advanced karate practitioners who want to forge a new career path may consider teaching the art form. Children are an important audience for such prospective instructors; they provide karate experts opportunities to influence the future of the sport. A standard college education may not be a requirement to teach, but demonstrated excellence in karate undoubtedly is.

Step 1

Shore up your own karate skills. Committing to the goal of earning a black belt in karate is a shrewd way to present yourself as a karate expert -- and a professional whom parents won't mind paying to instruct their children. This process can take many years; between five and eight is common. In addition, many instructors have earned black belts with multiple degrees and awards for their karate skill.

Step 2

Compete in karate. Martial arts tournaments provide an excellent way to boost your skill set. What's more, these tournaments are the events for which you may eventually prepare karate students in the future.

Step 3

Know what to expect from young karate learners. Because children are still developing in their bodies, minds and emotions, you will need to demonstrate a great deal of patience and understanding when working with them. Classes for children are about grounding them in the fundamentals of karate, not in stunning or complex martial arts moves. If you haven't developed the patience that teaching children requires, or if you prefer to work on advanced skills in karate, consider teaching an older age group.

Step 4

Interact with current instructors and schools. Each school or "dojo" may have requirements specific to its facilities that a prospective teacher must meet before being considered. Working through an established karate program can give you the opportunity to teach youngsters, while also equipping you with the experience and credibility needed to eventually open your own program.

Step 5

Take legal precautions. You will likely be required to undergo a background check and to have secured an insurance policy that helps to guard you in the event of an accidental injury during your work as a children's instructor.

Tips & Warnings

  • Consider earning formal academic training in working with children. A bachelor's or master's degree in a discipline like child psychology or early childhood education may not be a requirement to teach karate, but it can endow you with further insights into how children learn. What's more, parents may demonstrate more trust in an instructor who possesses an education targeted to serving young people.

About the Author

Jeffrey Norman has been writing professionally since 2005. His work has been published in such journals as the "Leland Quarterly" and on the blog, An Apple A Day. Norman earned a Bachelor of Arts in literature and creative writing from Stanford University.

Photo Credits

  • Creatas Images/Creatas/Getty Images