Coming Back to Karate
We are always pleased when an individual wants to take up training again. Reentry students bring many skills and experiences to the dojo. We have had karateka return after more than 30 years of little or no training. The average reentry time is after 15 years. Many returning students have previously obtained rank at both the kyu and dan (black belt) levels. If the student wishes, they can identify with their last rank and wear the belt for that rank. Some returning students opt to wear a beginner (white) belt. In either case, it is typical for the returning student to start at beginning levels and proceed slowly until they are comfortable with their progress.
Children and Karate
From our experience and for most children, the average optimal starting age is 12. This is also dependent upon the child’s maturity and attention span. A reasonable attention span is necessary to benefit from karate training. The value of teaching martial arts to children is frequently debated. Often it is the idea of the parents, rather than the child, to begin karate. Kids who start out young usually end up quitting very young and youth burn out is all too common. Please keep these issues in mind prior to any discussion with your child about learning a martial art.
Older Adults and Karate
Karate can be practiced at any age but may require some accommodations, depending on health status. For the adult over 50 years of age, it is advisable to have your doctor’s approval prior to beginning training. Older adults may not be as strong, fast, or flexible as they were when younger, but they can still benefit from karate and derive both physical and emotional benefit from training.