I believe that martial arts teach kids responsibility, respect, honesty and discipline. I like the structure of the classes and I enjoy seeing my son getting excited about going to class and participate in competitions.
For the other tournaments we had attended (only 2) I have asked my son to practice and practice. As he does for school if he wants to succeed, he needs to practice. But for this tournament, I asked him to practice and his response was: I already know my form. So I let him alone.
It was my way of teaching him a lesson. For me, this is more a hobby and extracurricular activity. It is not like we will be practicing for the Olympics or something like that, so I just decided not to ask him to practice and let him participate.
He was doing his form and he was also competing on sparring. He has been always good at sparring and I was thinking he was going to do well but I knew he was not prepared for the form competition. As expected he got first place at sparring, however he did not get anything on his form.
After the tournament I asked my son how was he feeling, you know he is only seven, so I was expecting a crying child for not getting a trophy, but to my surprise, he said I am ok, because I know I did not practice enough to get a trophy. And then he added: “now I know I have to practice everyday”
Well, I guess sometimes parents just need to take a step back and let kids learn the lessons. And yes, he did learn because he has been practicing daily since then.