On February 18-19, the first Adaptive Taekwon-Do Tournament was held as part of the Winter Festival in Kazakhstan.
Sport is a huge opportunity for the socialization of children with special needs and an effective way to prepare them for adult life.
Children with special needs benefit from physical activity for their normal development. It became clear recently that the more parents practice and encourage their child for all kinds of physical activities, the better the child develops. Such activities start from infancy by, e.g., massaging the child, stimulating to roll over or to crawl, up to gently jumping around as soon as the child is able to stand. These simple measures become markers of successful general and physical development. In the future, children that experienced those activities together with their parents are less anxious to have physical exercises on a regular basis.
The child not only strengthens physically, but also gets a new experience of interaction with children and adults, in particular, communication and social interaction, i.e., to learn and accept the rules of interaction in a community. And these rules are the same in the family, on the playground and in school. The family gives the child an invaluable first experience, but for life in a community of people it alone is not enough.
When a child attends an activity, the ability to benefit from relationships with new people increases, and each new experience enriches the child. We are talking about the ability to accept and master the rules of the group, the opportunity to learn to do something together with peers and other adults. The example of other children and adults helps building his or her own behavior and can help rescue him or her later in a difficult moment.
From the experience of observing children in consultations and work with them, we know how such a child is different – he or she understands how people interact, that is, how and with whom to communicate, sees an opportunity to address an adult and knows how to do it. Once he or she is among children, he or she quite quickly approaches them, joins in the general game, acting either as an observer or an active participant, forming both pair interaction and in a group with several children. Such a child is interested and can learn from others.
Adaptive Taekwon-Do has a favorable effect on children with disabilities on several levels: some improve their physical skills, and some improve their mental processes.