March 15, 2024


An outstanding platform for our son over the past 5 years.

"Sunshine Coast Karate has provided an outstanding platform for our son over the past 5 years. The leadership & teaching provided by Senseis Sandra and Martin have been instrumental in his development as a caring, resilient & strong human being. Fun but focused lessons are well thought out and the development of skills has been quite extraordinary over the years. Regular family activities and dojo beach training days have also provided a real sense of belonging for all of us and friendships have been the happy result. Our sincere thanks to SCK for being such an important part of the village that cares for our kid."

Empowering Parents to Raise Strong, Confident, Focused, and Respectful Children

As parents, we're constantly seeking opportunities to empower our children and help them shape their futures.

Amidst the myriad of choices, one timeless tradition stands out: karate. And let me tell you why, from personal experience.

I first stepped into the dojo at the age of 12. Little did I know that karate would become a cornerstone of my life, where I would not only meet my future husband (who has practiced karate since the age of 7) but also begin a journey of self-discovery (mind-body-emotion).

Fast forward to today, I stand alongside my husband as a proud parent of two teenagers, both of whom are now also embracing the art of karate.

Witnessing the transformative impact Karate training has had on my own life and my family's lives, I couldn't be more convinced of its value in nurturing strong, confident, and respectful individuals.

Let me share with you a few ways that karate has enriched our lives and why it could be the key to unlocking your child's full potential.

Nurturing Physical Health and Vitality
In an age where screens dominate our children's attention, ensuring they stay active and healthy is paramount.

Karate isn't just about kicks and punches; it's a dynamic practice that cultivates strength, flexibility, and endurance.

Karate is the perfect vehicle for kids to experience greater body awareness and control whilst also discovering the basics of movement (balance, co-ordination, mobility, core strength, etc.).

Through engaging workouts and skill-building exercises within the dojo, children not only develop a robust physique but also foster lifelong habits of wellness. 

One of my favourites - the practice of posture. Helping our children experience a healthy posture is incredibly powerful and it will help them feel and look more confident.

As an instructor and parent, this is one of my #1 go-to's when it comes to basic self-defence and improving mental and emotional health. The practice of standing tall and breathing will change your life.

Cultivating Confidence and Self-Belief 
In a world filled with challenges, instilling confidence in our children is a priority. Karate provides a nurturing and positive environment where they can set goals, conquer obstacles, and celebrate victories.

With each belt earned and refined technique, children's self-esteem soars, empowering them to embrace their uniqueness and face life's trials with courage. 

Yes, there will be times when your children will doubt themselves. In the dojo, a great instructor will help your children develop a mindset that supports them through all seasons of life.

For example, when doubt or fear sets in, your children will learn that this too is an 'opportunity' to learn, grow and strengthen. An opportunity to become a greater version of themselves.

Fostering Self-Discipline and Focus 
In an era of constant distractions, cultivating self-discipline in children can be difficult. One of the benefits of karate training is that children will become more aware of their minds, bodies, and emotions. This awareness extends to children learning how to better 'control' their minds, bodies, and emotions.

When children practice the art of controlling their mind, body, and emotions, magic happens. Their concentration skills strengthen and they can more easily channel their energies more purposefully towards what they would like to achieve and experience in the dojo and in life.

They become creators, leaders of their lives which comes with it a greater sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. Feeling more fulfilled, lighter, happier is a really nice place to be. It allows us to extend ourselves creatively, enjoy life more fully, and contribute to the lives of others.

Although some may associate self-discipline with pain or missing out on things in life. It opens doors to a limitless supply of opportunities.

Building Meaningful Connections and Respect 
In a digital world, it's more important than ever to encourage our children to participate in activities that will enable them to connect with others.

The dojo is the perfect environment which allows our children to not only grow themselves individually but it also helps them to develop socially and appreciate the gift of friendship and teamwork.

Through partner drills and collaborative exercises in the dojo, children are challenged to problem-solve and develop strategies that enable them to achieve their goals as individuals and as a team.

The dojo provides a unique environment to lay the foundations for positive relationships in all areas of life whilst continually nurturing the practice of patience, respect, and gratitude for ourselves and each other.

The underlying principle, 'karate begins and ends with respect', is one that we practice both in the dojo and in our family home with great rewards.

Something else I love about the dojo environment is that you are always a work in progress. As you learn more, you do better. And the cycle continues to greater levels of mastery.

When you apply this to how we demonstrate respect, patience, and gratitude for others in the dojo and in our family home... priceless.

Cultivating Emotional Well-being and Resilience 
In a fast-paced society, equipping our children with tools to navigate stress, anxiety and adversity is essential.

The dojo environment provides busy families a sanctuary for emotional release, self-discovery, and even the uniting of families for those that choose to pursue karate training together.

It's an opportunity to slow down, breathe and unite mind and body in order to experience the present moment.

Breathing is a very big part of karate training and is instrumental in uniting mind and body and helping children to monitor and manage their emotions more effectively and consistently.

Helping students to be 'present' for any length of time is transformative. In the dojo, your ability to lengthen these moments of concentration is nurtured and extended over time allowing you to live more mindfully in the present moment in all areas of your life.

When you are living in the present moment, life changes in a really good way. The distractions that once drained your energy previously, melt away leaving you with an ability to focus and give attention to what you want to experience and achieve in your life.

In essence, karate isn't just about kicks and punches; it's a transformative journey that equips our children with the skills and mindset to thrive in an ever-changing world. And, it's just as good for us adults.

At the time of writing, I've been practising karate for 34 years and I am more excited and curious than ever as I continue to learn more about karate and myself.

Life is becoming simpler and more enjoyable. Yes, I do still have challenges, and sometimes I allow these challenges to get me down.

With a little patience and time, these challenges not only strengthen me but also open doors to greater opportunities.

If you are still reading, thank you and I do hope that you find your way into a dojo near you if you aren't already practicing karate.

If you aren't sure where to start your karate journey... I'm a bit of a Chito-Ryu Karate-Do enthusiast. In short... it is AMAZING!

But you'll have to visit a dojo near you to experience it for yourself. Feel welcome to send me a message and I may be able to help you find a Chito-Ryu Karate-Do dojo near you.

Or if you live on the Sunshine Coast (Qld, Australia), register for a free trial lesson at our dojo, Sunshine Coast Karate.

About the author 

Sandra Phillips

Sandra Phillips
Chito-Ryu Karate-Do: 5th Dan, Renshi (Master Instructor) & Kobujutsu 3rd Dan

Sandra is passionate about living her best life and helping people like you live their best lives. No matter what you may be going through, know that your best days are ahead of you. Choose to challenge yourself to do something today that is important to you (no matter how small it may seem) and create ‘practices’ that help you live your best life.

Be Great, Be YOU! Let’s Grow!!

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