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My son gets physical when he gets angry. I've heard that boxing or martial arts are a good way to channel anger, but aren't they still violent activities?

User
May 12, 2017

I've heard that a lot of people who have trouble controlling their anger find martial arts to be helpful. Is this true? Isn't it just another form of violence?

Answers
User in Henderson, NV
March 23, 2015

Personally, I do not feel it is necessarily violent at a young age! for the younger little ones in class martial arts mainly works on the form of things as well as strength training to get the little ones ready to actually start sparring with one another! moreover, it is a fun and unique way to help your little one learn discipline and of course socialization!

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User in Aurora, IL
March 23, 2015

From what I understand, martial arts is helpful because it teaches control. One of the fundamental principles is that physical aggression is a last resort. Martial arts also helps build confidence, which can reduce aggressive behavior.

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Hello, Tiara! I am actually an intermediate martial arts instructor who is currently attempting a research study involving children with ADHD and martial arts. I have done some extensive academic literature review on martial arts and behavior. What they have found that while there are always rare exceptions to the rule, martial arts in violent adolescents actually reduced aggression and enhanced problem-solving skills over a martial arts intervention lasting some weeks. Not only that, but many other studies have found it to help with social skills, self-efficacy, and more! Hope this helps you. If you live in the Phoenix area, I am offering lessons myself. 

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User in Lynnwood, WA
March 24, 2015

Growing up I experienced anger issues as well and physical activity can help. Yes it is considered violence however its an alternative, healthier, and constructive way to release that angry energy. He can release it on a boxing glove or punching bag, or even refine his techniques instead of taking it out on you. Also, afterwards it will tire him out so he wont be as amped up and energized which can fuel the anger.

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User in West Linn, OR
March 23, 2015

I have raised two boys and every child is different how he copes with stress. I would highly recommend sports and plus it is great to have someone else than a parent to mentor our kids.

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User in Tampa, FL
March 24, 2015

Boys often will show physical aggression when they get mad. But that is not an excuse. You really need to "nip it in the butt", before it gets out of control if not already! But I always suggest that any child who is showing behavioral problems, should be first discussed with the Pediatrician, to be sure that it is not a developmental delay; which could alone be a reason for these types of behaviors. If that ends up being the case, taking them to a behavioral and developmental center would be the best advice. This place will give you specific regimens to follow. However, if he is not developmentally delayed then it might be something else. There are many reasons for a child showing physical aggression. I always suggest writing down throughout the day, or several days, the times these outburst occur, and the triggers for them. If your not sure why, you can always wait until he is calm, and ask why he is upset. After he explains then you both should be calm in discussing ways of resolving the issues...This is the tricky part, because you half to be creative, and know what your child likes. You can always suggest changing something a little to help him cope. Teaching your child coping mechanisms is very helpful. Telling him CALMLY, to take a deep breath is helpful. Make it fun as well, for example tell him that when he feels tense to shake it off! You both could shake around silly like and make noises while doing it, like I said creative and fun!!! He might look at you like your crazy at first but, hey if it works great! Another suggestion would be for your own safety. You cannot allow him to get physical with you. You need to be alert, know when you see him getting upset, before he asserts to getting physical. Leave the room, allowing him to calm down first, before you try approaching him. Because chasing after him while he is upset is pointless. You need to make sure that you are safe, as well as any siblings in the house. You need to remove objects that he could throw, ext. You must be certain that you allow him time to cool off. But at the same time, you need to put safety first. After he is calm, teach him the coping mechanisms....You could also let him know you love him, and you worry for him. Let him know how you feel about the problems that you are having. Always treat him for his good behaviors as well, and don't only focus on the bad behaviors! This is extremely important. If you are thinking of putting him in Karate or something similar, then let him know, and ask him if he thinks he would like doing this. It could teach him discipline, as many of these types of classes focus on, and at the same time it could allow him to release tensions from school or whatever else. But I would set the grounds first at home, and make him going to Karate a treat for him being on his good behavior. Letting him know that if he acts up there will be no Karate, because in Karate you are not allowed to be involved with this unless you are well behaved both inside and outside of the classes that are taught. I think your on the right track. Remember as a parent, your children doesn't come with a rule book with directions on them! Trust your instincts, and gut feelings!!! And TRY TO REMAIN CALM!!! Remember that you too need some relaxing time, and by putting him in these classes you could get just that! Hope this helps, Kristyn Evans

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