Keeping children interested in their Martial Arts training requires an element of fun and games. Traditionalists are usually only concerned with the discipline and structure of their training, but incorporating fun games involving proper techniques will add to the value of training and keep the kids interested.
Here are a few fun games and activities that utilize Martial Arts skills to keep the enthusiasm high and kids interested in their training.
Sensei Says is a take off of the old "Simon Says Game". In this version the instructor or parent would call out various martial arts techniques for the children to perform.
One instructor or parent is designated as "Sensei" or Leader. Children are instructed to follow and perform the commands of the "Sensei" only if the command is initiated by the words "Sensei Says". The leader will call out various commands. If the child does not perform the task when initiated by the words "Sensei Says" they are out of the game. If the leader commands a task without using the prompt "Sensei Says" and the child performs the task, then the child is out of the game. Last child remaining wins.
Wild & Crazy Blocker
Requirements: 2 padded foam blockers.
The instructor or parent will attempt to strike the child with the padded foam blocker. The attempted strikes should vary from left side to right side, and to various body points, including Head, Chest, Stomach, and Legs.
The child will use their martial arts blocking skills to "block" those strikes.
Each time a "strike" connects without the child blocking or shielding they receive a point. Three points or three "strikes" and they are out.
Requirements: 4 people, various Martial Arts Foam Blockers, Body Shields, Target Squares.
A diagram is available at
Danger Alley is a simple and easy obstacle course in which the child goes from station to station. At each station the child must perform a "self-defense" or marital arts technique to stop an "Attack or Danger".
A minimum of four stations with various situations is recommended.
Station One (The Escape)
An instructor or parent will subdue the child by grabbing and holding on to the child's wrist. The child must then perform an escape maneuver. Once the child escapes they proceed to Station Two.
Station Two (The Block)
When the child proceeds to station two, they encounter a would be attacker, attempting a punch or strike. An instructor or parent using a padded foam blocker will attempt to strike the child. The child should attempt to block the strike using a martial arts technique and then proceed to station three.
Station Three (The Punch)
When the child proceeds to station three, they encounter another would be attacker. The child performs a martial arts punch technique to stop the attack. An instructor or parent would hold a padded target square, which the child would punch. The child then proceeds to station four.
Station Four (The Kick)
When the child proceeds to station four, they encounter another would be attacker. The child performs a martial arts kick technique to stop the attack. An instructor or parent would hold a padded Body Shield, which the child would kick. After completing the four stations the child has successfully conquered Danger Alley.
Martial Arts trainings can be fun for children just by incorporating the techniques and skills into activities and games.
Eric has been involved in the Martial Arts Business for over 15 years. More information is available on the website!