Having taught thousands of children and mentored many through challenging times, I have seen so many children’s lives transform through improving their confidence and it’s something I’m very passionate about developing in our students.
I believe Martial Arts can be a powerful tool to very quickly develop confidence in children and in The Warrior Method: Community, Inspire, Challenge, Lead we have had incredible results in doing so.
As mentioned previously in this book, based on our survey to over 1000 Warrior Academy Parents who had put their children through our programme:
100% of Parents saw an increase in Confidence. The average increase in confidence (when comparing before and after results from being in our programme) was 26%.
That’s staggering considering as students grow older many of them have a sudden drop in confidence due to difficult transitions or the stress of adolescence and other factors like bullying etc.
So why is martial arts so powerful as a method for developing our confidence? To name a few…
+ Learning self defence is empowering. It has an impact on the development of confidence as we feel we are able to handle a stressful situation, avoid conflict and defend ourselves and our loved ones should this be necessary.
+ Developing fitness levels improves confidence as we feel fit, strong and healthy, we are not self conscious about our weight and are able to participate in other team sports effectively, typically excelleing, due to the excellent strength, flexibility and cardio that martial arts gives us.
+ A higher level of focus developed through martial arts has excellent carry over into our school work and our grades go up as does our confidence.
+ Being part of such a supportive network of friendly, like minded peers who are passionate about martial arts like us, means we feel a strong sense of community and this improves our confidence.
+ The Belt System that most martial arts uses creates very tangible goals that provide us with constant recognition for our hard work and boost our confidence regularly.
+ Developing leadership skills teaches students to take control of situations and trust their own judgement massively influencing their confidence.
In our programme we talk to our students and parents about developing “Black Belt Confidence”. Part of the reason we describe each part of the Black Belt Mindset using the term “Black Belt” is to contextualise the development of the mind and make it more visual and tangible. It also ensures the physical black belt students wear is not necessarily the big goal, it’s the values that make up the character, Black Belt Confidence, Conduct and Concentration.
So what is Black Belt Confidence?
Black Belt confidence describes an individual who has continuously taken themselves out of their comfort zone, who has a visible aura of confidence, they are proficient in public speaking and have a strong sense of pride, they have learnt to overcome their own fears and challenges and have shown they truly understand the power of The Warrior Method and have now developed strong leadership skills using their own experiences.
To make this goal achievable we break this down into very small steps and goals which are achieved gradually. If we consider most students stay with us for 6 years, the goals are broken down into yearly, monthly, weekly, and daily goals. Combining this with constant positive reinforcement and peer support (Community), with instilling a strong mindset that sees huge opportunity in the world (Inspire) and provides the individual with the opportunity to go out of their comfort zone to develop (Challenge) and ending with the skills required to pass their knowledge onto other students and solidify their learning (Lead).
I believe confidence is one of the most important values we pass onto our young students. Low confidence affects everything in our life from our aspirations, work life and the very enjoyment we take from life to our relationships with our family, friends, partners and children.
By having a strong sense of self and a high level of confidence we are very likely to achieve great things that will bring us happiness and improve their lives of others as well as our own. We are more likely to step out of our comfort zone and make a difference and we are likely to tackle challenges head on without hesitation.