Why Karate Makes the Best Holiday Gift For Your Child

December 18, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Holiday season has arrived, and that means it’s time for parents to pick out the perfect gift for their child to have a memorable Christmas. Getting a new bike or new toy may seem like the go-to gift, but getting your child karate lessons may be the greatest gift of all. Every parent wants the best for their child – here are a few reasons why karate makes the best holiday gift for your child:

  1. Build confidence and discipline

Some parents have the misconception that martial arts encourages violence in children, but the truth is karate teaches children that violence is not the answer and that their skills should only be used as self defense. Karate actually helps to increase confidence and discipline in children, as it helps to build an aura of strength and children need to respect their Sensei and follow their instructions diligently during classes.

  1. Increase self control

Other than building confidence and discipline, karate classes also help children develop their self control abilities. As karate involves carrying out punches and kicks with precision, this helps children increase focus and control over their bodies. However, at Urban Martial Arts we recommend enrolling children who have a minimum amount of self control, otherwise they may have trouble getting through an entire class.

  1. Teach them self defense

One of the most common issues that parents worry about is bullying – as school is an environment where parents cannot fully protect their children, it is important for children to learn basic self defense skills to prepare them for an encounter with a bully. Children who enroll in karate classes tend to be more confident, which is a valuable trait to have when faced with bullies.

  1. Develop leadership skills

At Urban Martial Arts, we teach students to be leaders, not followers. As karate includes rising through a series of belt ranks, experienced students become a role model for newer students and hence learn the importance of helping others in need.

  1. Develop more respect for others

One of the core principles of karate is principle and respect – other than developing technical skills, children also learn the philosophy behind the martial arts form. As children interact with others in karate classes, they learn to respect themselves and respect each other.

One of the greatest gifts parents can give their children is valuable personality traits that will help them excel in life in the future. While material goods provide a temporary sense of happiness, the core principles children learn from karate are permanent and help provide them with a positive guide to life.

How Kickboxing Can Help You Avoid Gaining Holiday Weight

December 18, 2014 • Leave a Comment

dec kick article blog

‘Tis the season to be jolly, but you can still stay lean and fit to enjoy the holiday season. The holidays may be the perfect time to let go and eat to your heart’s content, but if you want to lose that belly fat in time for the New Year, here are a few ways how kickboxing can help you avoid gaining holiday weight:

  1. Increase metabolism

Unfortunately most of us don’t have the metabolism of a teenager anymore, so we have to watch our weight by exercising and eating right. Kickboxing is a great way to increase your metabolic rate, as it is a type of high intensity cardio workout that gets your heart rate up and burns a high number of calories. As long as you go kickboxing on a regular basis, you won’t feel as guilty eating more on those cheat days!

  1. Tone your entire body

While certain types of exercise only focus on specific body parts, kickboxing tones your entire body, as it forces you to engage all the muscle groups in your body. Many people have the misconception that kicking only works your leg muscles, but you also work your core and abdominal muscles in a high kick. Other than building arm muscles, the punching and blocking movements also work your back and shoulders.

  1. Target certain muscle groups

While a kickboxing session works your whole body, you can also focus on specific muscle groups. At Urban Martial Arts we often focus on certain muscle groups on certain days for an extra challenge – one day might be abs day where we focus on toning your abs with side planks, the alligator drag and walkout from pushup position. On another day, it might be legs day where we focus on doing squads and lunges.

  1. Improve cardio and strength training

The beauty of kickboxing is that it is a combination of aerobic and inaerobic workout – in other words, kickboxing gets you the same results as running and lifting weights at the same time. Cardio kickboxing helps to burn fat and calories, while punching helps to build upper and lower body muscles and kicking helps to strengthen hamstring muscles.

  1. Revive your passion in exercise

Exercise can be fun too! Instead of seeing it as a chore, you should view kickboxing as a way to destress and let off some steam. Since exercise increases the release of endorphins, you’ll end up feeling happy and calm after an intense session of punching and kicking. If you need motivation to go to kickboxing classes, try going with a workout buddy and treat it as a social activity.

While it is tempting to go into hibernation mode during the holidays, it is important to keep up with your exercise regime in order to maintain your weight and metabolism. With the extra number of holiday feasts with family and friends, you’ll need the magic of kickboxing to burn that stubborn belly fat!

Holiday Schedule In Effect Dec 22 – Jan 3

December 18, 2014 • Leave a Comment

We will be operating on a reduced class schedule over the holiday break:

Mon, Dec 22 – OPEN for karate and kickboxing
Tue, Dec 23 – OPEN for karate and kickboxing
Wed, Dec 24 – CLOSED
Thu, Dec 25 – CLOSED
Fri, Dec 26 – CLOSED
Sat, Dec 27 – CLOSED
Sun, Dec 28 – CLOSED
Mon, Dec 29 – OPEN for karate and kickboxing, no after-school
Tue, Dec 30 – OPEN for karate and kickboxing, no after-school
Wed, Dec 31 – CLOSED
Thu, Jan 1 – CLOSED
Fri, Jan 2 – CLOSED
Sat, Jan 3 – OPEN for karate and kickboxing

On Monday, January 5th we will resume our usual class schedule. On that day our after-school program also resumes.

Thanks for your attention!

5 Things After-School Programs in Brooklyn Wish All Parents Knew

December 11, 2014 • Leave a Comment

5 Things After-School Programs Wish All Parents Knew

After school programs are great, fun places for kids to make new friends and learn new skills. It is also great for parents because it creates much-needed time for you to finish up with work or even get some things done around the house.

After school programs are run by professionals who have everything it takes to ensure that your child has the best of times, but there are some things they wish you as a parent would take into consideration.

1. Make sure your child brings needed equipment

Without the right set of tools, even the most talented person cannot do anything. If your child does not have the right set of tools then he/she will find it difficult to participate in any of the activities. So if it is a karate after-school program, make sure your child come with their uniform and sparring gear. If it is a chess after-school program, ensure they bring their chess sets.

2. Keep the program informed about special needs or situations

The after-school program does its best to ensure that your child has a rich and rewarding experience that is designed specially for the individual. The program cannot do this if they do not know what your child needs. Do not blindside the program. Please inform them of EVERTHING your child needs – whether it is dietary restrictions, learning delays or even that your child needs an extra minute in the bathroom. If there is something else going on in the home, also tell the staff. It helps them provide the best possible experience for your child.

3. Pack enough food and drink

There are some after-school programs that don’t demand much in the way of physical activity. And then there are others, like the Urban Martial Arts transported karate after-school program, that are extremely physical. Because your child will be way more active than usual, they will need more food. If you’re opting for a more physical after-school program, be sure to pack a substantial snack each day. Also pack a water bottle so your child can stay hydrated all day long. Many public schools serve lunch as early as 11 am nowadays, so to go without food from 11 to 6 pm would be extremely challenging.

4. Inform the program when your child will be absent

Part of the after-school program’s duty is to pick up your child from school. So unless they hear otherwise from you, they will assume your child has to be picked up every day. If they need to spend an extra 20 minutes looking all around the school for your child because they didn’t know about the absence, that will put the entire student population behind schedule. That’s unfair because other students will miss out on time for homework or activities. So make sure you always inform the program if your child will be out that day.

5. You get what you pay for

Most people would think twice about a $100 Ferrari, and for good reason. It’s the same thing for after-school programs. If the program is free or really cheap, then it likely does not have enough resources or a great facility. If you want a quality program for your child, you have to be willing to pay a tuition rate that is appropriate.

If you keep these five things in mind, your family will be on track to have a fantastic after-school program experience this school year.

Try our karate after-school program!

After School Programs in BrooklynThe Urban Martial Arts Transported Karate After-School Program includes free school pick-up, a free karate uniform, a free T-shirt, karate classes, and plenty of time for homework and snacks.

Just enter your email address below to view prices and details, and to request a free school tour.

Be sure to confirm your request by clicking the link on the confirmation email you’ll receive from us.

How to Get More Sleep and Boost Your Kickboxing Results

November 17, 2014 • Leave a Comment

2014-11-08 Get More Sleep Kickboxing Blog

Have you noticed that you’re not losing as much weight as you should be, even though you’re regularly taking kickboxing classes and eating right? It could be that you’re not getting enough sleep. Lack of sleep can interfere with weight loss, because your body needs time to recharge and break down toxins. If you want to boost your kickboxing results, here are a few ways to get some beauty sleep:

  1. Avoid using electronic devices an hour before bedtime

People who use their computers or smartphones before bedtime not only sleep fewer hours, but experience lower quality of sleep. Poor sleep quality can also lead to an increase in obesity and lack of energy during the day, which means you might have less energy to give it your all during kickxboxing. To avoid these negative consequences, try limiting your computer use before bedtime and instead read a book to relax your body and mind.

  1. Keep your room at optimum sleep temperature

According to studies, the optimal temperature for sleep is around 60 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit. If you have a warmer core body temperature, it can lead to heightened arousal and affect your ability to fall asleep. Since temperature above or below this range can cause restlessness, you should try to recreate this optimal temperature. For those who have trouble falling asleep, try placing a hot water bottle at the feet in a cool room. Since the hot water bottle helps to dilate blood vessels and lower core temperature, this can help to regulate your internal thermostat.

  1. Get to bed at the right time to maximize your sleep benefits

Other than regulating your body temperature, you should try to get to bed as early as possible, since your body (particularly your adrenal system) does a majority of its recharging between the hours of 11 p.m. and 1 a.m. Your gallbladder also dumps toxins during this period of time, so if you are awake, the toxins will back up into your liver and further disrupt your health.

Some people often overlook the importance of sleep and work after an intense workout – although kickboxing can help you take on more tone, muscle definition and strengthen your core, you won’t be able to lose weight unless you get a good night’s sleep. Don’t forget to treat your body like a temple after putting it to work!

What Age is Good to Start Learning Karate?

November 11, 2014 • Leave a Comment

2014-11-09 Karate What Age Blog

 

As a parent, you’re probably wondering what age your child should start learning karate. Some parents want to expose their children to the benefits of karate as soon as possible, but children that are too young may not be physically or mentally ready yet to learn the art of martial arts. At Urban Martial Arts, we believe that age 4 is the suitable age for children to start learning karate, since children younger than this haven’t yet developed the focus and self-control needed to get through an entire class. Even within the same age group, children tend to mature and develop at different speeds. Here are some factors to determine whether your child is ready to become a karate kid:

1) Is your child independent enough to participate in the class without you by their side?

Some karate schools may offer “family” classes where children and parents can train together, but at Urban Martial Arts we believe that children can only fully reap the benefits of karate if they start off by learning independently. Parents can watch from the side and provide support during the classes, but if your child cannot leave your side for the duration of a class and is heavily dependent on you, they may not be ready yet to learn karate. Since karate classes tend to be in a group setting, your child also has to be comfortable around people they don’t know to get through a class.

2) Can your child focus on one task for at least 2-3 minutes at a time?

Although karate classes for young children are designed to be very fast-paced with multiple short segments, your child needs to have a minimal level of concentration to get through each segment. Each segment tends to last for 2-3 minutes – if your child can provide 100% attention span within this period of time, they’re off to a good start. Parents may want their children to learn self-defense and discipline as early as possible, but classes for this age group tend to be more focused on co-ordination and fun to cater to their young age.

3) Is your child willing or able to control their body most of the time?

Learning karate can help children build focus and self-control, but they also need a minimum amount of these two factors to start off with. If your child lacks self-control from the beginning, they may have trouble developing these two assets as they get older. Other than self-control, children who have developed age-appropriate manners tend to be more suitable students for karate classes. For example, if they can follow instructions, listen to the instructor and avoid distracting the other students, they’ll be able to get through a karate class with no trouble at all.

If you’re still unsure whether your child is physically and mentally ready to learn karate, the best way to find out is to try out a class in person. Since most martial arts schools offer free or low-cost trial classes, karate instructors can observe your child’s performance in the trial class and evaluate whether they’re ready to start learning karate.

 

Try a free kids karate class!

KarateKidsKickingJust enter your email address below to view our class schedule and program details, and to request an orientation class.

Be sure to confirm your request by clicking the link on the confirmation email you’ll receive from us.

Don’t stop when it hurts. Stop when you’re done.

August 31, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Don't Stop When It Hurts Stop When You're Done

Try one fitness kickboxing class absolutely free!

Just enter your email address below to view our class schedule and details, and to request a free class.

Be sure to confirm your request by clicking the link on the confirmation email you’ll receive from us.

Urban Martial Arts Reviews: Michelle on Kickboxing

August 28, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Urban Martial Arts Reviews Michelle

What do members think of our Fitness Kickboxing program? Here’s Michelle on why she loves training at Urban Martial Arts:

“Love this place! Kickboxing classes are great. Staff is friendly, kind, family atmosphere. So glad I found them!!”
-Michelle F.

Check out our Google page for more Urban Martial Arts reviews.

Try one fitness kickboxing class absolutely free!

Just enter your email address below to view our class schedule and details, and to request a free class.

Be sure to confirm your request by clicking the link on the confirmation email you’ll receive from us.

Are You Guilty of This Killer Kickboxing Mistake?

August 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Are You Guilty of This Killer Kickboxing Mistake?

Kickboxing class is a great way to keep fit. You burn over 800 calories per class and work out muscles from all the core muscle groups.

But there is one mistake you may be making that will ensure you do not see as may benefits as you should. This killer mistake stunts your weight loss progress and robs you of the full benefits that kickboxing offers.

What’s this kickboxing mistake? Not eating before you go to class.

If you are taking kickboxing class on an empty stomach, please, STOP.

1. Why you should eat before kickboxing class

According to researchers, when you work out on an empty stomach, what you’re doing is losing the muscle you already have instead of building more muscles. This is bad for you because your muscle mass affects your metabolism. The less muscle you have, the lower your metabolism will be, which makes it harder to lose weight.

Another reason why you should eat something before kickboxing class is to ensure that you actually have fuel to burn during the class. Without enough energy to turn up the intensity, you’ll burn fewer calories, which defeats the purpose of working out in the first place.

2. When you should eat before kickboxing class

While it is important that you eat before your kickboxing class, you do not want to eat immediately before the class as this might leave you feeling bloated and heavy, unable to carry out your activities.

To ensure you have enough fuel to burn, have a small snack 30 to 60 minutes before kickboxing class.

It is important to make sure you don’t have a full meal just before working out because that could leave you feeling bloated and nauseous. Your last large meal should be at least 2 hours before class so that you give the food time to digest and still have enough fuel for the class.

3. What you should eat before kickboxing class

Diet is a crucial part of your health plan, so what you eat before going for your kickboxing class is of vital importance.

You should eat a lot more protein. Proteins contain amino acids, which are very useful for building your muscles. The more muscle you have, the higher your metabolism is, meaning you burn more calories even when you are not working out. Protein, therefore, should be a major part of your diet.

Lean proteins like chicken breast, ground turkey, and strip steak are great for you and will make an excellent addition to your diet.

Another crucial addition to your diet should be fat. Yes, we said fat.

Fat keeps you feeling full for a long time and comes with a lot of health benefits. But, because fat is easier than most food classes to retain in the body, you should limit the amount of fat you take to 20% to 30% of your daily calorie intake.

Focus on healthy fats like avocados, nuts, olive oil, peanut butter, salmon, and flaxseed oil.

Diet is perhaps the most crucial part of your weight loss process. Your diet contributes 70% to the weight loss process whereas exercise contributes a paltry 30%. So ensure you make the most of your kickboxing class by following the diet tips above.

Try one fitness kickboxing class absolutely free!

Just enter your email address below to view our class schedule and details, and to request a free class.

Be sure to confirm your request by clicking the link on the confirmation email you’ll receive from us.

What You Do Today Can Improve All Your Tomorrows

August 26, 2014 • Leave a Comment

What You Do Today Can Improve All Your Tomorrows

Try one fitness kickboxing class absolutely free!

Just enter your email address below to view our class schedule and details, and to request a free class.

Be sure to confirm your request by clicking the link on the confirmation email you’ll receive from us.