MARTIAL ARTS FOR BOTH CHILDREN AND ADULTS!

The Importance of Bilateral Coordination on Physical and Cognitive Skills

The development of a child can be one of the most fascinating things to watch unfold.

From infants mirroring movements to toddlers and children mastering high level developmental skills, the growth they experience in a short time is astounding.

And while all skills are important for children to master, bilateral coordination is an important prerequisite for development of a variety of motor and cognitive skills.

Bilateral coordination is the ability to synchronize both sides of the body in a controlled manner. An important aspect of this is “crossing the midline.” This is a spontaneous movement and involves being able to cross an imaginary line that runs down the center of the body.

It is key in doing simple things such as crossing your ankles and scratching your elbow.

Bilateral coordination is mostly developed through the corpus callosum, which is largely responsible for communicating messages from one hemisphere of the brain to the other.

In the early months and years of life, babies and toddlers typically use both hands equally to pick up objects, depending on which is closer. Then around the age of 3 or 4, children have typically established a dominant hand and the skill of “crossing the midline” has been solidified.

A key component to the development of bilateral coordination is body awareness.

This involves proprioception and refers to the ability to know where your body is in the environment without using your vision. The vestibular system also comes into play with the development of this since it is a factor of sensory integration. If these areas are underdeveloped, children may present with various difficulties.

When bilateral coordination is underdeveloped, children may appear ambidextrous.

While this sounds like a special ability, it is often because they have a processing issue in the brain. The two hemispheres of the brain are not communicating effectively resulting in clumsiness and struggles with daily living tasks involving both fine and gross motor skills.

The ability to cross the midline is also necessary for visual tracking, so reading and writing from one side of a paper to the other can be difficult as well as achieving other higher-level skills.

When our SKILLZ program was created, an extensive amount of research was put into the science of the brain and child development. Within each developmental level our drills are specifically designed to meet the needs of that age group.

To the untrained eye or unknowing parent, watching our classes may appear to just be another fun activity …

However, the science of how and why drills are taught to specific age groups is how SKILLZ takes training and child development to a whole new level.

Activities involving jumping, obstacle courses, animal walks, and other drills that challenge using both sides of the body in opposing ways helps supercharge the development of bilateral coordination.

Even better, this training can potentially lead to improvements in many higher-level cross-body tasks such as reading and writing!

Engaging children in activities that constantly spark conversation between the left and right hemispheres improves brain communication.

Training methods involving bilateral coordination have a huge impact on this process, therefore improving motor coordination as well as cognitive skills.

Why is this so important for parents to know?

The more parents learn and understand the science behind this, the more active they can be in nurturing their child to their full potential.


Learn more about our kids karate programs & how to schedule your first lesson below!

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About our programs

Early SKILLZ
Preschool - Kindergarten

3–4 year-olds are naturally curious. They might not be ready for the rigid structure of a traditional martial arts class ... but they do need to start learning about appropriate social behavior!

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Basic SKILLZ
1st Grade - 3rd Grade

It's often easy for teachers and parents to overestimate 5-6 year old children. They're better at following directions and paying attention than younger children, but they still need some help controlling themselves and focusing on tasks.
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Core SKILLZ
3rd Grade - 5th Grade

Children are like sponges. They absorb things quickly and easily - far more easily than we do as adults. Not only are they getting healthier as they learn martial arts, but they're also learning the value of self-discipline and respect.
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Junior Karate SKILLZ
Middle School Program

Karate may normally make you think of self-defense, fitness, and discipline ... the truth is, it's all of that and WAY more!
Our program helps our students build skills that they can APPLY to every area of their life and empower them to be the very best they can possibly be!



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Teens Karate
High School Program

Instead of giving into the moodiness and attitude, take them to our dojo instead! Teenagers are smart and capable - but they can also be their own worst enemies. Between peer pressure, their innate urge to rebel against their parents, and their surging hormones, they can be impossible to be around. But all they need is an outlet for their frustrations - and an opportunity to be their best.- DISCOVER -

Adult Karate
Ages 17+

Martial arts training is fun, empowering, and provides a great workout for adults. Studying martial arts is something that anybody - at any age or fitness level - can do. Our programs make learning fun, empowering, and provides a great workout for busy parents!



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