What Age Should My Child Start Martial Arts?

The resounding consensus is simply, as soon as possible!

Generally, martial arts instructors will recommend enrolling a child at 3 or even 2 years of age due to the focus on gross motor skills. The lessons are designed specifically to start teaching the body how to develop, how to move and how to coordinate safely and effectively during a crucial stage of childhood development. Most kids can start to develop postural abnormalities, muscle imbalance and instability during these early years if they are not taught and encouraged to move in the proper way. Martial Arts training at this age focuses solely on motor pattern development and behavioural skills through some basic techniques.

Below are some guidelines that parents can use when deciding when to enrol their child or children into a martial arts program.

Consider the Program the school is teaching – Curriculum design is a major part of developing young children effectively and appropriately. Schools that focus on curriculum development, updating curriculum, have a variety of programs that focus on different ages, learning styles and elements of martial arts, such as strength & conditioning, supplementary martial arts tend to develop kids more effectively than schools that do the same training, week after week. The sign of a changing curriculum is indicative of a professionally developing academy.

Focus and Self-Control – Consider your child’s current ability to focus, take direction and self-discipline. Naturally, these elements don’t need to be 100% perfect before starting martial arts, because we know that martial arts is a great method to teach these skills. Basic understanding of listening to your parents, your elders, and taking direction is advantageous.

Does your child participate in other structured activities? – If your child attends a playgroup, kinder or activity that has a time frame, routine and set expectations, that is definitely helpful. If you’re not sure whether your child is ready, most schools offer trials to see if the child responds to the activity or even asking to watch a class with your child to see how they react to what they see will help. We notice that often the younger siblings who watch their brothers and sisters from the sidelines, start to copy what the students do in class, or watch intently with laser-beam focus! This is often a sign that the child may be ready or almost ready to start classes themselves!

Essentially, there is no one age-fits-all, but rather a matter of when your child is ready.

Waiver and Release

I, the undersigned Student, freely and willingly agree to participate in martial art training with Fight Physio Pty Ltd trading as Twins Martial Arts (TMA). I hereby assume full responsibility and liability for all damages, injuries and losses that I may sustain or incur while participating in training at TMA. 

I realise that serious injury is commonplace in martial arts such as the martial arts that I am participating in and that death is a possibility, as remote as it may be. I also realise that if I am injured, I might be disfigured, disabled and/or rendered unable to work again. By participating in martial arts training, I fully accept and assume liability for any and all injuries that I may incur and I expressly waive and agree to hold TMA harmless in relation to any and all claims that I, other students, spectators, or any other person might have for any injury regardless of its nature, or effect as a result of my participation at TMA classes or events held or participated in by TMA. 

I further agree to follow all TMA rules and lawful instructions given by TMA instructors or personnel while participating in classes or TMA events. I acknowledge that failure to follow TMA rules and instructions could lead to serious injury to me, other students, instructors, or other persons.  

I authorise, and agree to hold harmless, any medical personnel that may be present at or called to TMA to take any necessary action, should I become injured whilst at training or any other event. 

I warrant that all personal information I have provided to TMA is true and correct and agree to immediately advise TMA if my details change. I agree to indemnify TMA in relation to any damages or loss it suffers or may suffer as a consequence of my personal information being incorrect in any way.  

I represent that I am in good health, that I am not presently and will not participate in any classes or TMA event while under the influence of any drug, medication, or alcohol. I have read and understood every provision of this release and I am legally competent to freely provide this waiver, release and assumption of risk. 

The indemnities and waivers provided in this document shall survive the duration of the event and shall bind me, my heirs, legal personal representatives, successors, and permitted assignees. 

In the event that the Student is under the age of majority, this waiver and agreement shall be signed by a legal guardian of the Student and shall bind the Student and the Student’s legal guardian. 

Warning under the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Act 2012 (Victoria) Under the Australian Consumer Law (Victoria), several statutory guarantees apply to the supply of certain goods and services. These guarantees mean that the supplier named on this document (being TMA) is required to ensure that the recreational services it supplies to you: 

1. are rendered with due care and skill; and 

2. are reasonably fit for any purpose which you, either expressly or by implication, make known to the supplier; and

3. might reasonably be expected to achieve any result you have made known to the supplier. 

Under section 22 of the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Act, TMA is entitled to ask you to agree that these statutory guarantees do not apply to you. If you sign this document, you will be agreeing that your rights to sue TMA under the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Act 2012 if you are killed or injured because the services provided were not in accordance with these guarantees, are excluded or restricted to the greatest extent permitted by law. 

NOTE: The change to your rights, as set out in this document, does not apply if your death or injury is due to gross negligence on TMA’s part. Gross negligence, in relation to an act or omission, means doing the act or omitting to do an act with reckless disregard, with or without consciousness, for the consequences of the act or omission. See regulation 5 of the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Regulations 2012 and section 22(3)(b) of the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Act 2012. 

TMA’S LIABILITY TO YOU  

I expressly agree that in exchange for being permitted to participate in TMA’s activities: 

1. I release from liability, agree never to sue, and hold harmless, to the maximum extent permitted by law TMA, as well as its employees and associates, for any bodily injury or death and for any damage, loss or theft of any personal property which I may incur while on TMA’s premises or which arises from my participation in any TMA activities, regardless of cause, including the alleged negligence, gross negligence, or strict liability of TMA. This includes a release of my rights to sue in relation to the provision of recreational services (as that term is defined in the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) and the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Act 2012 (Vic)) where the services or recreational activities are not provided in accordance with certain statutory guarantees; and 

2. If I or any legal representative on my behalf files a claim or lawsuit arising out of my participation in any TMA activity, I agree to defend, indemnify and hold harmless TMA for any damages, legal fees or costs arising out of such claim or lawsuit. 

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