is it possible for a disabled person to be good at a martial art like karate?

my son lost his right arm in a car crash a few months ago .he wants to join karate but feels he wont be able to do it properly because of his disability. he is 19.

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13 Responses to is it possible for a disabled person to be good at a martial art like karate?

  1. emucompboy says:

    Your son should probably go out for one of the other martial arts that puts emphasis on kicking, such as kickboxing or Savate.

  2. Duisend-poot says:

    Nothing is impossible, i watched a program on disabled people climbing a mountain and they were really disabled. They did it and i have nothing but admiration for them. I am sure your son will be able to do so, best thing to do is to take him to your local Dojo and speak to the owner.

  3. Cnote says:

    I’m sorry to hear that about your son. Disable people can do martial arts the problem is finding a teacher that is experienced in teaching disabled people.

    When I trained in boxing/Muay Thai there was a guy that was missing an arm. One would assume he can only use one arm to attack and half of his defense would be impaired but he was still catching people despite this.

    Baxter Humby is missing an arm and he is a Muay Thai and Kickboxing World Champion. There are obviously some physical limitations but that shouldn’t stop your son from learning if he wants to.

  4. Seth says:

    I’m not trying to get your hopes up, but many people throughout history have trained their bodies weather it be disabled or not, to do things that a regular person could.Look at the Special Olympics, those guys are disabled yet they still do the things they do…so, I’m sure with a lot of training your son could teach himself to fight with his disability.As a matter of fact, I’ve heard of this man who fights only with his legs, so if he can do that…..



  6. executioner_bolan says:

    Steer him towards a foot-oriented Martial Art like Savate or Capoeira

  7. Jim R says:

    Yes it is quite possible for your son to learn karate. Steer him toward what he is interested in. The key to learning any martial art is the same as for other people, except it is more rare to find an instructor with experience teaching disabled persons. Talk to the teachers of the dojos in your ares, and be frank with them. Find the right teacher for your son, and he can benefit greatly from the training. Good to both of you.

  8. nwohioguy says:

    Absolutely yes…he can be great at whatever he choses to do and Karate, under a good Sensei, would be an incredible experience for him. If you find a good Sensei that person will never agree there are disabilities…only challenges that one must face as they learn.

    In 31 years of Karate I have both seen and taught people who were in wheel chairs, blind, deaf (or both), missing leg(s), arms or other things. There is nothing that a person cannot do if they just stay positive. Tell your son good luck and we wish him the best.

  9. Triston TKD says:

    Join WTF Taekwondo it is 70% kicks and 30% hand strikes plus it has the best variety of kicks…if hes gonna join karate i would suggest Kyokushin since it has very good leg technches as long with hand strikes

  10. Mushin says:

    A good instructor would willingly accommodate students of all abilities or special needs. Martial arts training is a personal journey of self-transformation promoting each individual to grow and evolve at their own pace while developing their physical, mental and emotional characteristics.

    If a student is unable to kick, then a replacement technique that does approximately the same thing can usually be found. For example, a front kick can be replaced by a straight punch, a roundhouse kick by a roundhouse punch, a back kick by a hammer-fist and so on. For people who cannot use their arms, the reverse is true. People who are paralysed on one side need to be given one sided alternatives, keeping in mind balance problems that may also be present. And, if there are motor control problems techniques can be modified.

    The biggest adjustment and challenges don’t lie with the physical aspects of training; they come from overcoming students’ insecurities and learned behaviours. The same is true for students without disabilities.

    Teaching someone who was athletic all of his or her life but, through an accident, had a limb amputated is different from teaching someone who was born with a disability. Someone born with a disability who has been integrated into society is different from someone who has been institutionalized. This is also true of teaching able bodied students. One who was abused as a child will have different needs than someone who had a happy and nurturing childhood. Men have different needs than women in many cases…but everyone can learn Martial Arts with the same high standards.

    Karate has massive benefits on both physical and mental health and well-being. Karate can be used to channel negative built up energy, into positive and productive thoughts and energy, leading to a much better balanced approach to difficulties and problems. Obviously Karate also provides a great cardiovascular work out – and the philosophy helps promote a healthy and positive lifestyle.

  11. clowns says:

    Absolutely. The biggest problem you are going to have is finding an instructor that is qualified to teach him or at the very least be able to adapt to it.

    Heard a story of a kid who lost his arm in a car crash and pretty much lost all self esteem. His dad decided to put him in Judo to build up confidence. When they went to the Judo school the kid was really stand offish and the instructor taught him one throw and told him to try it. The kid was throwing other people around by the end of his first class. What the instructor taught him was a throw that the counter to had to have the other person grab the arm that was gone. The kid went on to become a rather good Judoka

    Your son will face problems in martial arts with a missing arm. The problems he faces and over comes in martial arts will build up his confidence to face the problems the world will bring.

    Good luck to you guys :)

  12. Daniel says:

    He absolutely can pick up martial arts… He should look into the style that he would take up first really well first though… Judo probably wouldn’t work out too well because it’s all grappling… He would probably want to look into a smaller dojo also so he can get more 1 on 1 attention too (I’ve found them too be cheaper too)… I would recommend Tae Kwon Do because it focuses mostly on kicks with some punches… I think he will do just fine…

  13. idai says:

    Hi there

    Your son should really go and do this as i feel he will really shine at it.
    The arts arent about physique. There about skills and everyone has the right to be able to defend themselves not matter what their sex, age, colour or disability.

    He should certainly give it a go if his hearts set on doing it.

    My only advice is find the right club where the instructors have the right heart and mentality to be teaching. Theres some right crazy people out there and some are teaching so be careful. If any clubs are funny about yours sons disability then find another one. Its their loss not yours. You dont have to have a special understanding to be able to teach people with disabilities you just need to be considerate and treat them like just every body else.

    With regards to being good at it well if he trains just like everybody else and puts the time in then he will excel at any art he decides to do.

    Best wishes


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