How Can Taekwondo Help Kids with Autism?

“I have had the privilege of working as a Taekwondo teacher, specializing in working with children who have autism.

Throughout the years, I’ve witnessed the transformative power of Taekwondo for children with autism. By implementing structured and tailored training programs, I’ve successfully created a secure and supportive environment in which these children can thrive. My approach not only focuses on physical development but also emphasizes the enhancement of their cognitive, social, and emotional skills.

Recognizing the uniqueness of each child, I’ve refined my teaching methods to accommodate various learning styles and sensory sensitivities. Patience, empathy, and adaptability have become the cornerstones of my teaching philosophy, enabling me to establish personal connections with each child and guide them toward realizing their full potential.

I’m excited to continue this meaningful journey, introducing the world of Taekwondo to children with autism and assisting them in building confidence, discipline, and a sense of accomplishment. I eagerly anticipate sharing my experiences, insights, and knowledge with all of you as we collectively strive to create a more inclusive and empowering environment for these exceptional individuals.

If you’re interested, I invite you to incorporate Taekwondo into your program for a trial session. Experiencing it firsthand can help showcase the positive impact it can have. Following this initial step, we can progress to the next stage.

Thank you for dedicating your time and consideration to this matter.”



Talking about having kids practice Taekwondo when they have Autism can be confusing as some are unaware of the benefits of this Martial Art with child with Autism.


So, how can Taekwondo help kids with Autism? Autism spectrum disorder is a term that refers to individuals who have difficulties with communication and social interaction. With the right attitude and motivation, Taekwondo can be beneficial to the mental, physical, and social growth of any kid with Autism Spectrum


here can be a wide variation in presentations of these “symptoms,” which is where the word “spectrum” comes into play. Now, the question on your mind is, “Since Taekwondo relies heavily on repetitive movements and sequences, how will it improve the well being of kids with autism spectrum disorder?”


Taekwondo and Autism

I am not a fan of labeling people with “disabilities,” hence for the rest of this article, I will only refer to the “autism spectrum” rather than use phrases such as “those disabled” or “people with.” It is a part of life, and I have had personal experiences with people on the Autism spectrum who lead lovely lives.


It won’t be right to diminish their humanity by using pejorative language; instead, this article will focus on the potential everyone has with the help of my favorite martial arts style, taekwondo.



Even though Taekwondo is considered more a martial art then a “sport,” it provides various benefits physically, socially, and mentally for children with ASD. It is said that kids with autism spectrum disorder have difficulty with communication and social interaction in outdoor settings. Some children also tend to display “obsessive” repetitive movements, words, and phrases.


Autism and The Social Benefits of Taekwondo

Children with ASD are often “protected” from extracurricular activities, which makes their current social issues harder to overcome. A typical Taekwondo class is designed to serve the requirements of children of all ability levels without the pressure that comes with being involved in a team sport.


The mere fact that they are included in a wholesome, non-judgmental, low-pressure social environment that is vested in bringing out the best in every kid can help a child enjoy this particular type of group setting.


While every kid is different, children with ASD are more likely to benefit from the improved confidence, social interaction, and discipline associated with Taekwondo classes.


Taekwondo teaches kids better self-control and increased focus on tasks. This increase in mental strength should come in handy when they attempt to solve problems. It also provides a better understanding of crucial character traits such as courtesy and integrity, traits that are valued in the Taekwondo community.




Social skills can be quite difficult for children with ASD to master, but the sense of family associated with Taekwondo classes fosters true friendship between students.


Most Taekwondo Dojang – the name for martial arts training halls – often organize Dojang picnics, movie nights, and parties that will undoubtedly improve the social skills and ability to connect with others.


Expansion in Mental Capacity


To the untrained eye – haha, forgive me for getting all Karate kid – the activities such as running, kicking, and jumping performed in the classes seem only to bolster coordination and improve fitness; however, these moves also provide significant sensory stimulation for kids with ASD.


Sensory seeking, such as jumping, barging into stuff, rolling on surfaces, and other physical stims peculiar to people with ASD, respond positively to physical activity.


If you are with autism spectrum disorder and sensory seeking, the muscular and mental stimulation that is a hallmark of Taekwondo will make your experience very enjoyable.


A prevalent feature in the Autism spectrum is repetitive and stereotyped movements, which is exciting for a different reason. Repeated practice is the base of skilled learning – how we all get better at motor skills. This applies to traditional martial arts training as well.



Knowing this, it is easy to assume that repetitive physical training involving routines such as repeated kicks, lunches, blocks, and repeated patterns will make things worse. But apparently not!


Although there is limited scientific evidence to counter this question, there is just enough to answer it. Additionally, there is the anecdotal experience of teachers and observers who have interacted with children in a martial arts environment.


Despite the neurobiological makeup of people with ASD, it is quite clear that defined martial arts training can be an effective form of movement training for those with ASD. There is growing evidence that martial arts-based training which bolsters mental and physical integration can be highly efficient.


This, and other activities that promote repetitive moves involving the whole body, such as jogging, yoga, swimming, and dance, create many avenues through with children with AS

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