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which martial art for DS?(5 Posts)
11 yr old DS was diagnosed this summer with dyspraxia, hyper mobility in his upper body and is having further assessments to see if he is on the autistic spectrum.
Years ago he did karate and stopped it to do football instead. He then started kick boxing but we had to stop it when he was out too many evenings and he chose to keep up the football and stop the kick boxing.
We now know that a martial art would be a good sport for DS to do but wondered if anyone has any experience and knows if there is one particular martial art that would be best for DS.
Dd does taekwondo which she enjoys its a good martial art. But there is a lot to learn in terms of Korean language and different patterns and the history of it etc. Dd is 8 and has a terrible memory but she manages it (just). She's very good at the physical side but hates learning the theory
ds started doing akido, but now does hapkido.
Reasons for swapping were two fold
1/ The akido class was massive 30 kids so I had to 1:1. Very focused on a pure technique with lots of foreign jargon to learn. DS had trouble keeping up.
2/ The Hapkido has a max of 6 kids - so lots more proper attention from the insturctor!. More eclectic style, so more useful to a kid growing up in the inner city. The foreign jargon seems to be easier to learn in a smaller setting, and the feel is more informal and fun as the instructor focuses on technique rather than crowd control. With a smaller group DS is less self-conscious. More of the movements cross the midline - a specific weakness for DS so particularly relevant to his dyspraxia iykwim.
His elder 1/2 bro is very keen on Karate, I didn't like our local group & you need a small mortage for Taekwondo round here.
Some of it will come down to what's on offer locally. A kid is gonna get more out of a class of 6 than one of 30 every time if they have dyspraxia just due to the amount of attention they can get from the instructor. So an art might be theoretically better or more suited than another but the quality of the class not so helpful. The only way to really choose is go watch some classes tbh.
thanks very much for the replies. I hadn't thought about class sizes but I can see that it will be very important so thanks for that tip. I think the kick boxing class was quite large for the warm ups etc but they were split up into smaller groups for the actual lesson part. I think we might go with that route then to start with as we know them, they know DS and he already does have a few belts and experience. The hall is nice and large too so not cramped for when we have to stay and watch
Personally, I think it depends on the instructor and the child's personality/dyspraxia impairment.
DS1 tried Choi Kwan Do - non contact, so less chance of joint damage. Instructor was excellent and tolerant. DS gave up as he found it upsetting that younger boys and girls, who started after him were getting levels and belts. He knew when and where he was going wrong. We let him leave as it was obvious that it was damaging to his self esteem.
With further info from OT, we know where his main hypermobility and dyspraxia issues are. He has a real issue with mid-line. He is totally ambidextrous due to this. His hypermobility is predominantly upper body.
We stayed with football as there is far more opportunity to use his strength of being able to use left and right side independently, whilst giving him exercise to strengthen his muscle to support his joints.
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