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How ADHD Children benefit from Martial Arts

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How ADHD Children benefit from Martial Arts

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects millions of children around the world. Children with ADHD often display various symptoms, including difficulty focusing, impulsivity, and hyperactivity, which can negatively affect their academic and social life. While there are various treatment options available, martial arts have been increasingly recognized as a beneficial intervention for ADHD children to improve their overall well-being. In this article we will explore the benefits of martial arts for ADHD kids, backed by research studies and testimonials from parents and experts.


Improved focus and concentration


One of the significant symptoms of ADHD is difficulty focusing and sustaining attention, which can negatively impact school performance, everyday life and social interaction. A key element of martial arts is the training of focus and concentration. Martial arts classes consist of a structured environment that requires discipline and attention, which can help ADHD kids in developing the ability to concentrate for extended periods. Studies have shown that martial arts training improves executive functioning, including working memory, impulsive control, and planning abilities in children with ADHD. (1)


Enhanced self esteem and confidence


ADHD children often struggle with low self-esteem and self-confidence, which can lead to anxiety and depression. Martial arts training can significantly impact the child's self-perception and self-worth by empowering them with self-defense skills, mental resilience and achievement of milestones. Moreover, a martial arts class is a non-competitive environment where children can learn and grow at their own pace, improving their self-esteem by focusing on their strengths rather than their weaknesses.
Reduced impulsivity and hyperactivity

Symptoms of impulsivity in hyperactivity can be very frustrating for both ADHD children and their caregivers. Martial arts classes require discipline, attentiveness, and self-control, which can lead to a reduction in impulsivity and hyperactivity. The structure of martial arts classes encourages children to channel their energy productively under the guidance of an instructor, which can benefit the child's overall behavior and interpersonal relationships.


Improved physical fitness and coordination


ADHD children can have difficulty with motor coordination and physical activity. Martial arts training involves various exercises, including stretching, cardio, and strength training, which can significantly improve an ADHD child's physical fitness, balance, and coordination. Furthermore martial arts techniques require specific movements and body awareness, helping the child's cognitive and sensory integration.

Martial arts can provide a beneficial intervention for ADHD kids by improving their focus, concentration, self-esteem, and physical health. While medication and behavioral therapies are traditional interventions for ADHD, martial arts can introduce an alternative approach to managing the symptoms of ADHD. By enrolling in martial arts classes, ADHD children can experience an enjoyable and structured environment that promotes personal growth and accomplishment. Therefore, parents and educators are encouraged to consider martial arts as a complimentary therapy and discuss it with their child's doctor and specialist


1, Huang, C. W., Yu, J. H., Lin, K. C., and Huang M. H.  ( 2015). Martial arts intervention enhances neuropsychological performance and attention in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Journal of psychophysiology, 29 (2) , 39-45


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