The Awesome Benefits of Taekwondo
My wife Patti and I have a 5 1/2 year old son who is very active and “all boy all of the time,” if you know what I mean! We were looking for some type of sport that our son would love but one that would also teach him to focus his energy and to have more self-control. We found the perfect match in Taekwondo.
Keeton has been doing “Tiny Tigers” Taekwondo with ATA in Carrollton, Texas and just loves it! Ever since he was able, Keeton has always liked working out with daddy doing all kinds of exercises. So, although he might be little, he can do a lot. As a kid most forms of exercise are just typical “playing.” Keeton loves running and biking but also does things to help build his upper body like swimming, rope climbing (as another article talks about), and the monkey bars. All these conditioning and strengthen activities are great at helping any kid with or without hemophilia. But, Taekwondo adds a mental element to help kids focus and produce something concrete with all of their energy.
In the hemophilia community, we know several families whose kids with hemophilia also do Taekwondo and love it. In one of the families the mom even started taking Taekwondo with her two sons. So, Taekwondo is definitely a family sport! My wife and I both have been talking about joining Keeton in the next couple of months as he moves up from Tiny Tigers. So, whether you are a child or an adult, living with or without hemophilia, Taekwondo is really a sport that can offer so many benefits physically and mentally, but can also be used to build stronger inner-family relationships.
When I was a kid growing up with hemophilia, I never could really play sports so I sometimes feel at a disadvantage playing sports with my son Keeton. I began looking for something I could do with Keeton and I feel like I can do this and enjoy it. I know for most of us adults with hemophilia, it depends on how good our joints are to begin with, whether or not we can even attempt a sport like Taekwondo. So, as always make sure you consult with your doctor or treatment center before starting an activity like this. As I started getting interested in taking Taekwondo with Keeton, I asked the instructor how hard it would be on my joints and he said that I could go a long way before I ever had to really do anything hard on my body like breaking boards. This is definitely a sport my son and I can do together, and we will also learn other things along the way like some great self-defense moves. I definitely want my son to be able to protect himself if he ever needs to, and believe me if there was ever a time when he might be abducted, kidnappers would run from Keeton!
The issue of getting your child with hemophilia into some type of sport that will allow him to succeed but not be too dangerous is really the same as it is with someone like me who has hemophilia and is trying to get their son into some type of sport. I want my son to succeed, but it is hard because I never played sports and really do not understand all of the aspects of them. I want to teach my son passion for sports as well as life, and also teach him to just play. It is also very easy to do at your own pace. That is why we love Taekwondo! The thing we love about it is that we can take Keeton as many times a week as he wants to go and slow down the next week if we are busy doing something else; you can’t do that with most other sports. I cannot tell you how good he has become at it and believe me, these instructors do not put up with any horse play when they are working on their form. Taekwondo teaches kids lots of things like respect, honor, control and great motor skills that will also help them in any other sport they might play. Give Taekwondo a try, you may love it too.