Martial Arts: Humanity, Discipline, and Courage

Martial Arts: Humanity, Discipline, and Courage

Kirsten Song’s summer martial arts class

Children of the 1980’s were learning “wax on/wax off” with the Karate Kid. If your early childhood was during the 1990’s, like mine, then you grew up during the craze of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers and spent a good portion of recess trying to decide who got to be the Pink Ranger! And thanks to Netflix, a new generation is rediscovering the joys of the Karate Kid thanks to the hit series Cobra Kai.

But for all the overblown Hollywood effects that are usually applied to martial arts, South Hills Academy, with our wonderful teacher Kirsten Song at the helm, is taking time this summer to offer our eagles an opportunity to learn the basics of this oftentimes misunderstood sport.

Some of the benefits of this sport include increased confidence, a full body workout, increased flexibility and better coordination, self-defense skills, lower blood pressure and heart rate, improved mental stamina and social skills, stress relief, and continued development of self-discipline.

As Ms. Song describes, “The focus that I want the kids to understand is to stand up for themselves when they need to and to teach discipline. Bullying is something that unfortunately happens frequently at their age, and they’re being taught how to stand up to that, not just with their actions, but also with the right words. It’s easy for kids to either shrink from their attackers or resort to violence, but I’m trying to get them to understand the correct way of handling it. Martial arts is also a time for self-reflection. At the end of every class, they meditate and look back on the day and each of their classes on what they did well and what they can improve for next time. Many of them are already much more respectful and show a great interest in improving their kicks and self-defense skills!” 

Our SHA eagles are having an exciting time learning these tools of self-defense and increasing their confidence through a fun and engaging sport!

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