Kids learning with others or alone on a screen
Combatting the Summer Brain Drain:

How Martial Arts Keeps Young Minds Sharp

The “Summer Brain Drain,” also known as the “Summer Slide,” is a parent’s and educator’s worst nightmare. It’s when your child’s months of hard work–hours upon hours of math homework, late nights working on science projects, and car rides spent quizzing history flashcards–all begin to slip away. It’s a decay in learning, which then can have a domino effect on a child’s physical, emotional, and social development.

Ever wonder how knowledge retention works? Here’s what we know. Skills deteriorate over time at a rate determined by the specified task, predicted by the individual’s original level of learning. The old adage  “Use it or lose it”. Therefore, the method yielding the highest initial learning level will lead to the highest level of skill retention over time. When summer break rolls around, learning takes a dramatic stop. In just a short amount of time the “Summer Brain Drain” begins and so begins the downward snowball in ALL development areas.


martial arts will help kids not get fat over the summer

The Problem: Children gain weight nearly twice as fast over the summer because they are snacking more often, many times out of boredom or lack of proper supervision. At the same time, many children are also less active over the summer because they sleep in longer, watch TV longer, play video games longer, etc. Although it may seem like they are more active over the summer, the lack of structure contributes to weight gain.

The Solution: Even just two days of structured physical activity, like martial arts, over the summer can dramatically affect children’s physical activities at home. They will have more energy and, therefore, more likely to engage in other physical activities throughout the summer. 


The Problem: To be blunt, the “Summer Brain Drain” happens when kids spend the summer months without learning or practicing their skills, leading them to fall behind on learning and academic achievements. During the school year teachers, coaches, and counselors are focused on helping children learn and grow. But what happens during the summer season when these people are not around? A decline in cognitive development.

The Solution: Child psychologists state that children who maintain some sense of a structured activity during the summer, like martial arts, do better in the initial months of the new academic school year. Martial Arts training through the summer reinforces a time commitment, and necessity to practice, reminds students to follow through, and gives them the learning environment they need to reinforce the skills they’re learning, which in turn strengthens their retention of academic knowledge. 


The Problem: When the school year ends, children lose a lot of key contributors that boost self-esteem…teachers, counselors, coaches, etc. This leads to less confidence entering the back-to-school season. Children who lose self-esteem over the summer enter the new school season with many fears associated with making new friends, meeting new teachers, and bullying.

The Solution: Structured martial arts classes provide a great environment for building children’s emotional development in a manner that is positive and productive, helping to ensure confidence, self-esteem, and emotional well-being. 


The Problem: Children who do not have proper social development over the summer tend to misbehave when they enter the new school season. At the same time, children who do not have sufficient positive social interaction over the summer enter the new school season with more anxiety.

Kids learning with others or alone on a screen

The Solution: Martial Arts classes include daily classroom activities that strengthen children’s emotional outlook. In fact, more confident children enter the new school season excited about all of the wonderful opportunities that schooling has to offer! 

Many people have an image of summer being a carefree happy time where “kids can be kids,” and take for granted the benefits of enriching experiences from organized activities. Even just two times per week in a structured program can make a tremendous difference in a child’s intellectual development over the summer, which ultimately helps with their physical, emotional, and social development as well. Do your research and find a program that provides these benefits in a manner that is also fun so that kids can still be kids and not lose that carefree and happy summer lifestyle.

To learn more about our Summer child development-based martial arts program that utilizes ring-tested martial arts and cutting-edge brain training as the vehicle to maximize your child’s growth or to get him or her started click the button below.

Kids who quit martial arts
Children Don’t Quit Martial Arts, Parents Do

At NAK Martial Arts, we believe in the power of commitment, not just for our young martial artists, but for their parents too. Children don’t quit martial arts, parents do. Your dedication shapes their journey toward discipline, confidence, and success. Over the 35 years I have been teaching martial arts I get tons of adults that tell me when they were a child they were disappointed that their parent’s let them quit, usually at one of the firt 3 belts. But if you truly want to help you child become successful;

Here’s how you can support your child’s growth:

  1. Be consistent with attendance. Discipline and confidence stem from structured commitment.
  2. Encourage perseverance through tough times. Overcoming challenges breeds true confidence.
  3. Teach the value of commitment. Resilience is built by seeing things through, even when interest wanes.
  4. Embrace the journey to black belt. Completing the martial arts journey instills invaluable life skills.
  5. Lead by example. Your involvement cultivates your child’s confidence and discipline.
    Together, let’s empower our children to thrive with unwavering commitment and dedication. Get them to the dojo and witness their transformation into strong, focused individuals ready to conquer life’s challenges!
10 to 14 yr old martial arts class
10 to 14 yr old Martial arts Class

Introducing the Internationally Acclaimed Youth Muay Thai Program! 🌟

Ten to fourteen-year-olds are the smartest students in the school. Yes, they are smarter than most adults! They are also physically competent and can excel in most physical challenges that are presented to them. The problem we discovered is they are so focused on what is socially acceptable that they have a hard time keeping themselves emotionally driven to the task at hand. The solution we found is to provide them with their own program that targets their stage of development in a manner that nurtures their social and emotional instability while at the same time building skills that set them up for success. With that said a structured program introducing extreme skill-based training in Martial Arts has proven to be very successful.

Here’s an overview of the stages of development of children ages 10 -14:

  • Physically– they typically have great technique and agility, but they can be lazy which leads to sloppiness.
    • We expect them to initially be sloppy on things that are easy physically.
    • The goal for our program is to get them to understand their potential if they pay attention the intricate details. We normally bypass the basics elements of physical development and jump right into the complicated details.
  • Intellectually– they are extremely smart. Their critical thinking skills are top-notch, but their decision-making skills are typically the exact opposite, and that is why most adults treat them like a child.
    • We expect them to initially make choices that are easy as compared to applying thought and effort.
    • The goal for our program is to get them to see the bigger picture and apply their intellect.
  • Emotionally– thanks to science, they are typically all over the emotional spectrum. This is more prominent in boys than girls.
    • We expect their efforts to be based on what they think is cool.
    • The goal for our program is to help them apply intrinsic motivation and realize their true potential. Our goal is to also help them improve their decision making skills with drills that challenge their reaction time.
  • Socially– they care about what their peers think. If something is cool, then they will put more effort into it.
    • We expect them to initially hold back if they are uncomfortable as a defense mechanism.
    • The goal for our program is to help them excel at everything they do, especially in front of a crowd.

By understanding the stages of development of 10 and 14-year-olds, we were able to select age-appropriate skills that make up our Youth Muay Thai Program.

As you can see we take Martial Arts training to a whole new level! We use extreme elements of traditional Martial Arts curriculums to build skills that are appropriate for 10 to 14-year olds. This means that your child will learn and grow at a pace that is not too easy, nor too challenging. The best part is the Youth Muay Thai program will equip your child with skills that they will utilize in every area of their life

If you truly want your child to become their best self check out our 10 to 14 yr old Martial arts trial program today!

But don’t take our word for it; check out what Murfreesboro parents think of our 10 to 14 yr old Martial arts program

Muay Thai is better than karate classes in Murfreesboro Tennessee
Empowering Young Warriors: Why Muay Thai Triumphs Over Karate for Kids

In the dynamic world of martial arts, Muay Thai emerges as a superior choice for kids, surpassing the traditional appeal of Karate. Here’s why Muay Thai takes the lead in shaping young warriors:

  1. Realistic Self-Defense Skills: Muay Thai equips kids with practical self-defense techniques relevant to real-life situations. The comprehensive skill set includes punches, kicks, elbow strikes, and knee strikes, providing a well-rounded approach to personal safety.
  2. Full-Body Workout: Muay Thai’s emphasis on using all limbs results in a full-body workout. Kids not only develop strength and flexibility but also enhance cardiovascular fitness, promoting a healthy and active lifestyle.
  3. Cultural Diversity and Respect: Muay Thai’s rich cultural heritage instills values of respect, discipline, and humility. Kids learn about Thai traditions and customs, fostering a global perspective and appreciation for diverse cultures.
  4. Effective Striking Techniques: Muay Thai’s focus on powerful striking techniques gives kids a broader range of offensive and defensive maneuvers. The inclusion of elbow and knee strikes enhances their arsenal, providing more effective means of protection.
  5. Clinch Work and Close Combat Skills: Muay Thai uniquely incorporates clinch work, teaching kids effective close combat techniques. This valuable skill set prepares them for scenarios where maintaining control at close quarters is essential.
  6. Dynamic and Engaging Training: Muay Thai training sessions are known for their high-energy and dynamic nature. Kids remain engaged as they learn through interactive drills, making the learning process both enjoyable and effective.
  7. Adaptability in Various Scenarios: Muay Thai’s versatility ensures that kids can adapt to various situations, whether in self-defense or sparring. This adaptability enhances their overall martial arts proficiency.

In conclusion, Muay Thai emerges as a holistic and practical martial arts over karate for kids, providing not only effective self-defense skills but also a dynamic and culturally enriching experience. Enroll your child in Muay Thai at NAK Martial Arts to witness their growth as empowered and well-rounded young warriors.

Further reading

4 to 6 year old kids martial arts in Murfreesboro Tennessee
4 to 6 year old martial arts training

4-6 year olds are the most enthusiastic students. They love creativity and problem-solving, which makes them ideal students in the Martial Arts. The problem we discovered is they are so progressive in following tasks, that some teachers tend to treat them like their older peers. This is a problem because they still do not have the basic skills necessary to keep up with children ages 7 and up. The solution we found is to provide them with their own program that targets their stage of development in a manner that adapts to their social and intellectual curiosity while at the same time building skills that set them up for success. With that said a structured program introducing basic skill-based training in Martial Arts has proven very successful.

Read more: 4 to 6 year old martial arts training

Overview Lil Nak 4 to 6 YO martial arts program

These are the stages of development for children between 4 and 6 years old:

  • Physically– they typically do not know how to apply their muscles so they fall often when their body is in constant motion. Also, they have a basic foundation for leg, arm, core, and abdominal development, but they still lack a lot of strength.
    • We expect them to initially struggle with multiple kicks beyond five repetitions. We also expect them to initially have sloppy technique when exercising.
    • The goals for our program are to get them to perform high repetitions of kicks without putting their foot down, and also perform static, active, and dynamic exercises for beyond ten reps with good technique.
  • Intellectually– they typically have a hard time retaining beyond three commands. They also have a hard time distinguishing between their left and right.
    • We expect them to initially get confused when we ask them to do more than three things at one time. We also initially expect them to have difficulty distinguishing between their left and right when following multiple commands.
    • The goal for our program is to get them to retain three or more commands at once, and beyond. We will also help them learn how to perform various left and right combinations.
  • Emotionally – they typically focus on things that make them happy. They also have slow brakes when they are excited.
    • We expect them to initially lose focus and shut down when they are not happy. We also expect them to lose contro when they are over-excited.
    • The goal for our program is to help them focus even when it’s hard to do so. We will also help them control their body and their power, especially when they are excited.
  • Socially– they love to play with others, but are typically very competitive.
    • We expect them to initially show weak sportsmanship when participating in a competition.
    • The goals for our program are to help them build good teamwork such as no cheating; don’t get angry when they lose; and don’t brag when they win.

By understanding the stages of development of 4 to 6-year-olds, we focus on these appropriate skills in our Lil NAK Martial Arts Program:

  1. FOCUS


In conclusion, if you’re seeking the ultimate kids’ martial arts experience, look no further than NAK Martial Arts Our age-specific approach, combined with engaging and effective teaching methods, sets us apart from the rest. By optimizing your child’s learning experience through active participation and game-based drills, we unlock their potential and cultivate a lifelong love for martial arts. Join us on this incredible journey and witness firsthand the transformative impact of age-appropriate kids’ martial arts training. 

Enroll your child in NAK Martial Arts today and watch them soar to new heights!

Back To School: FOCUS TIP

Imagine this: a young girl at the dining table, her homework spread out. She’s easily distracted by the chirping birds outside, the ticking clock, or even the aroma of freshly baked cookies. 🍪 It’s not uncommon. A tip for parents? Create a ‘focus zone’ at home. This is a special area, devoid of distractions, where your child knows it’s time to concentrate. Over time, the mere act of sitting in this zone signals to their brain that it’s time to get to work, and the distractions fade away. 💡📚
This WHOLE month, we’ve got some amazing Back To School Tips for you, Parents! Here’s to a successful school year!