The January headlines of Wānaka burglaries might have got you thinking about self-defense. Karate is a hobby you can pick up that is both practical (you don’t need any equipment outside of the classroom to defend yourself!) and fun that appeals to adults and children alike. The ancient martial art inspires confidence and focus whilst still giving you a good fitness workout. Learning Karate takes skill and practice, but unlike some hobbies, you can visually see yourself improve week after week. If your child has been having trouble obeying and following tasks, Karate could install a much-needed sense of discipline. Think about it, the whole system of Karate is built on hierarchy and discipline! From the famous belt colours to respecting Sensei’s commands, Karate maintains a strong system of order.
Tania Brett runs Hāwea Karate which offers both a junior and senior class on Tuesdays during term time. For beginners, she advises that “you need to be able to move freely so wear track pants or shorts and a T-shirt if you don't have a uniform. Take along a drink bottle as well.”
The Upper Clutha hosts a wide range of Karate clubs and instructors if you’re interested in the sport. “It is a good idea to contact the instructors before you train to see when it's a good time to start,” says Brett.
So whether you’re a fan of The Karate Kid, want to learn some defensive moves or gain some fitness away from an intimidating gym environment, consider Karate for your new 2020 hobby. It’s a great way to make friends and kick butt at the same time. And hey, even if you end up hating it, at least you’ll still walk away with a killer white outfit.