The Secret to Developing More Well-Rounded Athletes | On the Mat Martial Arts
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Michelle Dolak reviewed On The Mat Martial Arts
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Our family can't say enough about On The Mat! Master Melody and her awesome team of Ninjas are like a parent's secret weapon. Our son goes to practice Tae Kwon Do, he ends up learning about character, respect, self-control and other priceless virtues! The family environment and friendships fostered at this club have added a beautiful dimension to each of our lives. I have as much fun catching up with friends each week as Robert Paul has on the Dojo. We are grateful to be apart of such an amazing program.

Adrian De Silva reviewed On The Mat Martial Arts
5
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Awesome instructors and place to train for kids in the area If you live in the Saint Pete's area this is where to bring your kids for not just the best martial arts but life training Skillz!

Jessica Hodosky reviewed On The Mat Martial Arts
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Just started but I can tell the school is amazing and the staff are very nice and attentive! My daughter seems to love it too!

Suzanne Saccani reviewed On The Mat Martial Arts
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The best customer service ever, Melody Shuman and her staff go out of their way to over deliver

Cydney Swindle Tuten reviewed On The Mat Martial Arts
5
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The best money that our family has invested in the development of our child! As an early childhood educator, I am very picky about extra curricular activities! On the Mat is the model for positive reinforcement! They treat everyone like family! We are so grateful that we are there and only wish we had found them sooner!

Mark J. Speranza reviewed On The Mat Martial Arts
5
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No better place than OTM for brinhing the best out of your child. The instructors are some of the best and the owner Melody Shuman is the most knowledgeable in child neuroscience. Many martial art facilities around the world look to her and use her Skillz methods for teaching children. AAA++++++

Brooke Breland reviewed On The Mat Martial Arts
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We signed our 5 year old up for the free trial over the summer to try out something new and keep him active during the summer. He absolutely fell in love with it and asked if he could go every day! The curriculum is perfectly geared toward each particular age group. The instructors are so engaging and committed. The skills and confidence our son has gained just in a few short months are priceless. Our summer activity has quickly become part of our regular year round schedule and I foresee him continuing for years to come. OTM rocks!!

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The Secret to Developing More Well-Rounded Athletes

Martial Arts Cross Training

An athlete is defined by Merriam-Webster as “a person who is trained or skilled in exercises, sports, or games requiring physical strength, agility, or stamina.” Athletes in specific sports train to be at the top of their game, but how much better of an athlete would they be if they had a well-rounded cross training program?

For years, martial arts has been viewed more as an “art” than a sport. And while, there is much beauty in it, there is also a lot of blood, sweat, and tears that go into the training.However, that is the part that the general population does not see. Training in any form of martial arts is rigorous and is, by far, one of the most versatile. Those that have studied any form of martial arts knows what is require of them in training in order to achieve higher levels of mind and body fitness.

Martial arts creates well-round athletes. This may come to a surprise to some, but not to those that train in it. From strength and speed training to mental acuity and confidence to flexibility and balance, martial arts covers it all. Using martial arts as a training foundation for athlete development helps people in all sports become better physically and mentally equipped, skills that will give them an edge in their own sport.

This idea of martial arts cross-training, however, is not new. It’s just not something that is in the forefront when we hear ofsports training. There are many professional athletes across the country and across various sports that train in some form of martial arts. They’ve discovered the numerous benefits that martial arts provides them in their overall sports performance.According to the LA Times, Clay Matthews, a linebacker for the LA Rams, said the players wanted to condition their bodies to be able to stay healthy and to train their minds to be stronger than their opponents’. Phil Mickelson, a professional golf player, says that his training in martial arts has helped him control his body and focus better on his game.

The multi-dimensional way of training that martial arts provides can assist athletes in any sport. And what’s even better is that martial arts is not a seasonal sport so the consistency in the training has a huge impact on keeping athletes fit in the off season as well.

When athletes start this type of cross-training as children, the benefits have even more of an impact. Since the SKILLZ program was created as a whole child focused approach by using martial arts as the vehicle to teach, child athletes benefit even more in this system through the method of four-dimensional teaching. They learn how to keep their bodieshealthy and it teaches them different ways to train so they are at peak performance level. It helps them learn to work as a team and support others. It teaches them to stay focused and remain calm under pressure, and it helps them learn more quickly and remember things easier.

As sports training continues to evolve and focus on the whole athlete, more people will begin turning to martial arts as a method of cross training. Knowledge is power and utilizing martial arts training as a foundation to athletic development will be the method of choice to keep athletes strong mentally and physically during the on and off seasons.