Introducing Early Skillz for 3 to 4 Year old Kids! | 4GK Martial Arts
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Danna Davis

My 6 year old son has been attending Ninja class at 4GK since August 2018. He loves it and I do too! He loves the skills and games and I love the discipline he is learning. I’ve spoken with a child-behavior doc about what he gets to do in class and the doc was *thrilled*. It’s clear that he believes in the philosophies Sifu and Miss Heidi teach about the importance of play and physical activity for children for all aspects of their development.

Jen Robinson

I took a kickboxing class and it was amazing. I was so pumped and ready to take on the day. Everyone was super nice and the routine was so much fun I would definitely recommend and be back for more!!!

Laura Miller - Owner, Little People's Center reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

Had the pleasure of visiting Heidi at 4GK Martial Arts and observing both her EARLY SKILLZ for children ages 3-4 and MOMMY AND ME class for children 18 months and up. The children are guided through the basics of martial arts with hands on gross motor activities set at their own individual pace. It was a pleasure to see.

Di Trudden reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

My daughter completed her first group class tonight and I could not be a prouder or happier mama right now! Heidi Burmann and Raquel made Lily feel welcome and were so patient with her as she was learning the kicks and routines. I am so happy that we discovered a healthy and fun new hobby for Lily! If you are looking for an affordable place where your little one can learn and grow then 4GK is for you!

Everyone knows I have been on my own little health journey creating Our Mommy Movement and finding new ways to exercise. I signed up for kick boxing classes through 4GK and am really excited to try them out! Seeing how patient and kind the staff was with Lily I don’t have to worry about being surrounded by people who will judge me while I try to keep up with the moves.

Tina Dos Reis reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

Great school and awesome team! Everyone is extremely friendly. My nephew Sebastian just loves his Extreme Skill class and after watching the team work together, I decided to try the kickboxing class. Frank put the entire class through a great workout! I can't wait to lose weight and build muscle. It's just the change I was looking for! Thank you 4GK!

Jennie D'Ambroise reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

Great school! Adult kung fu classes are approachable for all levels. You will learn a lot and you will work hard. Sifu and your fellow students will help you to improve and you will make great friends. Kickboxing classes will also kick your butt. Women, train here, you are welcome at all classes and the atmosphere is friendly and supportive.

Tommy Aliberti reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

This has always been a home away from home! Very much a family, and I have been part of this system for 18 years! Great values, hard work, and many lessons to be learned every time, which I have taken with me in the ring, and in everyday life! 5 Star recommendation!

Donnie Keegan reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

My daughter has been studying here for, two months shy of, three years. She still loves it! I my self have decided to join. Love the staff. they are constantly innovating and improving,both the structure of the school and its teachings. I can only hope to improve myself to the degree in which my daughter has been improved herself! Absolutely top notch school!

Rachel Ramsey Weir reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

We have had a great experience in the last year that our son has been attending 4GK. He has become more disciplined in his actions, his body has been strengthened and he knows the rewards of hard work. The dedication of the staff is evident in each class. It is clearly a labor of love!

Cheryl Anne reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

Fantastic staff !!!!!!!!!! Fantastic fun classes, they know you're name, they know how to make you work while you happily sweat toward a better you !

Katie Bacigalupo reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

LOVE the kick boxing class! It is such a great work out and fun at the same time! I always feel great afterwards and can't wait to get back to the next class!

Michelle McCann reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

Great atmosphere, awesome staff and incredible workout! Love it!!

Victoria Ingoglia reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

I absolutely love the atmosphere. It's clean, friendly n very challenging. I've given some awful dirty looks while stressed n I get high fives later. High intensity fire burning workouts keeps me motivated!!

Rebecca Manzella reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

4GK is excellent! I signed up my son for Basic Skillz just a few weeks after his 4th birthday. He loves coming to class to see his fellow ninjas and I really enjoy watching him learn new skills. In a short time, I had already noticed a behavior improvement while in a group setting and the two half hour classes a week are perfect for his attention span. Thank you Miss Heidi and the rest of the staff for your patience and influence on Neil.

Dawn-Marie Francois reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

The school is great!!! Classes are manageable and they push you to do your best. Staff is friendly and patient.

Frank Gil reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

I wanted to make a change in my life. I was stagnant, not active and unhappy honestly. One day my brother and friend convinced me to take a class at 4gk. That was years ago and thousands of punches and kicks ago and I love it every bit now as I did that first class. The instructors are amazing, knowledgeable, and were always willing to work with me at my level. I've spent a lot of time here and find no matter how my day has been I can't help but smile when I walk through the 4gk doors. It's a great environment for people who want to challange themselves and grow and there is no place else I'd rather be

Roseann Wander Walsh reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

I absolutely love it there. Everyone is very welcoming and make you feel very comfortable. I've done kickboxing at several other place and all the people there were very clicky I am very comfortable here and would recommend it to everyone.

Kimberly Lago reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

My oldest daughter has been coming here for a year. We fell in love immediately after seeing how wonderful the staff is with working with children of all ages. My second daughter was dying to be in a class also. As soon as she turned 3 we gave it a try and she has blossomed. Seemingly shy I was curious to see how her first class type activity would be. She loved it. Just waiting for daughter number three to be old enough because she is only two, but already feels like she belongs. We absolutely love it.

Shannon Marr reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

I love this place. Everyone is super friendly and makes you feel like a part of the family. I get constant encouragement to keep going. And when I had sprained my ankle and couldn't come for awhile, they worked with me financially and kept sending me encouraging messages to take it easy and get better. I get the best work outs and never any judgements.

Leianne Marques reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

4GK is an awesome school. The entire staff treats you like family. I take the kickboxing and skillz fit classes. The encouragement and motivation you get from the instructors makes you feel like you can achieve your goals, do anything you want, even if your first instinct is to say no when they all you to do something. I accomplish something in every class and have learned to think yes I can instead of there is no way I can.... the instructors break things down so you can easily understand each move. Everyone is made to feel important and special in each class, no one is left out. I can't imagine going anywhere else.

Linda Cummings reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

We just started the mini skillz program a couple of months ago. I admit, after being in the free play, no rules music program for the entire spring, my 2 yr old granddaughter was starting to rebel against listening. The first day of class I was almost in tears after five minutes when I realized how bad her behavior had gotten without structure. I'm so glad I stuck it out though. The second class was a joy, with her listening intently and using her brain. Miss Heidi has the patience of a saint. She is also on top of age appropriate skills and stresses them at each class. We've learned taking turns, following direction, jumping, kicking and punching, and many, many other useful things. She loves going to her class twice a week and I truly love taking her. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend these wonderful people and this fantastic school to anyone.

Danielle Hulse Maloney reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

My two sons have been coming here since December 2016. They absolutely love it & have THRIVED since coming! The older one suffers from anxiety & general fear, he has since built up tremendous confidence & has learned to verbalize any issues he may be having. The younger one is a ball of energy that needed direction & a release, he has achieved focus & better listening skills. The staff is AMAZING! They are welcoming, accommodating & listen to any issues you have whether it be with them, the class or your children. I could go to any of them & speak with them about ANYTHING & feel very comfortable doing so. Si Fu teaches the class in a low-key, fun manner that has the children engaged AND having fun at the same time, it's not the typical militant style. We received a military discount since my husband is a former marine AND ... They run a monthly themed Parents Night Out that gives parents a break without their kids from 7:30-10:00! I am thrilled that we found them & highly suggest to anybody looking for a martial arts school to check them out!

Yaoska Fleming reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

Great team! My daughter loves the school. She has learned so much since she started a year ago. I am so happy I found this place. I am so grateful for Ms. Heidi, Sifu Mike and all the team. Their love and dedication is shown in every class. Good job!!

Neil Manzella reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

I highly recommend 4GK to anyone considering Martial Arts for their children or themselves. The staff has been doing an amazing job with my 4 year old son. He has a safe and fun outlet for some of his endless energy supply and the staff do a great job keeping all of the students involved, active, and engaged in the classes activities. My son loves it and looks forward to it every week!

Christina Annessa reviewed 4GK Martial Arts
5
via Facebook

We just started a month ago and my kids are in love & can't get enough of it. Everyday they ask do they have class. Its great for all ages and I really like that they split them up. My daughter is 5 and is learning age appropriate skills while in the next class my 8 year is learning different things. The staff is super friendly and always accommodates our needs. I absolutely love the fun nights they do as well, the kids get to hang out & have fun while I get to relax a bit a home. Overall very satisfied with this program.

4GK Martial Arts Patchogue Martial Arts & Childhood Development Center
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Introducing Early Skillz for 3 to 4 Year old Kids!

Introducing the Internationally Acclaimed Early SKILLZ Program!

Preschool kids between the ages of three and four years old love physical activity, especially anything involving play. They have a rich imagination and a strong desire to be less dependent on their usual caregivers. The challenge we discovered is that many children at this age have a hard time with structure in a group environment, like what is commonly found in most Martial Arts schools, or even many organized sports teams.

The solution we found is to provide preschool kids with their own martial arts program that targets their unique stage of development in a manner that keeps them entertained, while at the same time building skills that set them up for success. With that said, a structured program introducing early skill-based training in Martial Arts has proven to be very successful. (For more information on our classes, visit www.NotKarate.com)

Here’s an overview of the stages of development of children between the ages of 3 and 4:

  • Physically– they typically have low muscle tone and poor hand-eye coordination.
    • We expect them initially to drop their arms when punching, and to stumble or fall when kicking or jumping. We also expect them to have no concept of spatial awareness, therefore they will drop things that are thrown to them and bump into people and obstacles often.
    • The goal for our program is to get them to punch without dropping their arms; kick without falling; jump without falling; catch objects thrown from various directions and distances.
  • Intellectually– kids at this age typically have a limited vocabulary — only about 30% of their language capacity —  therefore learning is normally limited to visual and kinesthetic activities.
    • We expect them to initially lose focus when activities are over-complicated. We also expect them to struggle with commands that have more than two instructions.
    • The goal for our program is to get them to follow verbal commands with no visual demonstration. Also, our goal is for them to remember rules and commands without being reminded.
  • Emotionally– they typically have strong preferences and fears and are not shy about telling you.  Therefore they will normally act out of bounds when their emotions get out of control.
    • We expect them to run off the mat when they have anxiety. We also expect them to shut down when something either scares them or doesn’t go their way.
    • The goal for our program is to help them follow directions and persevere through an activity even if they are initially emotional, and to begin self-regulating when they experience strong emotions.
  • Socially– they are typically very self-centered. Also, due to their limited vocabulary, their common form of communication is mainly physical.  They like to engage in parallel play, meaning they want to be involved in the same activity as those around them, but do not necessarily want to play WITH those around them.
    • We expect them to mimic one other, such as falling when their classmate falls. We also expect them to crash into things when they are excited, sometimes even on purpose.
    • The goals for our program are to help them build good social skills such as spatial awareness; not interrupting when others are talking; taking turns properly.

By understanding the stages of development of 3 and 4-year olds, we were able to select 8 age-appropriate skills that make up the Early SKILLZ Program:

  1. KICKING
  2. PUNCHING
  3. BLOCKING
  4. CRAWLING
  5. HOPPING
  6. ROLLING
  7. RUNNING
  8. CATCHING

We cover one of the above skills per class (in order).  During each class we run a warm-up; deliver a mat chat about the skill to help the kids connect with the lesson; run two or three skill-building drills to engage their working memory; then we have them demonstrate the skill to earn their skill-stripe. Students must earn all 8 skill-stripes in order to graduate to the next martial arts belt level.

Once they earn their next belt they will continue to run through all 8 skills earning their skill-stripes with a more challenging curriculum as they advance to each rank. They graduate to the Basic SKILLZ program after they have successfully completed all 9 belt ranks of the Early SKILLZ program.

Here is an example of what a white belt must demonstrate for each of the 8 skills above in order to earn their next belt:

  1. KICKING – Front kicking in the air, alternating legs. They must be able to execute ten kicks in a row alternating legs in order to pass.
  2. PUNCHING – Straight punching in the air, alternating arms. They must be able to execute ten punches in a row alternating arms in order to pass.
  3. BLOCKING – High blocking in the air, alternating arms. They must be able to execute ten high blocks in a row alternating arms in order to pass.
  4. CRAWLING – Bear crawling across the mat. They must be able to bear crawl up and down the floor without their knees or elbows touching the mat in order to pass.
  5. HOPPING – Hopping down the floor with both feet. They must be able to hop down the mat with both feet together, and without falling, five times in a row in order to pass.
  6. ROLLING – Rolling a ball down the floor. They must be able to roll a ball down the floor while alternating hands, and keeping at least one hand on the ball at all times, in order to pass.
  7. RUNNING – Running down the floor. They must be able to run down the floor as fast as possible without falling in order to pass.
  8. CATCHING – Catching a ball thrown underhand from one step away. They must be able to catch a ball five times in a row in order to pass.

As you can see we take Martial Arts training for preschoolers to a whole new level!  We use early elements of traditional Martial Arts curriculum to build skills that are appropriate for 3 and 4-year olds, focusing more on skill development than technique memorization. This means that your child will learn and grow at a pace that is not too easy, nor too challenging. The best part is the Early SKILLZ program will equip your child with skills that they will utilize in every area of their life!

Check out our Early Skillz martial arts program and schedule your child’s free 1-on-1 lesson with one of our instructors here: 

And just in case your child isn’t quite ready for Early Skillz, check out our Mini Skillz program, specifically designed for the developmental needs of toddlers between the ages of 18 and 36 months.  This mommy-and-me style class is one of the best activities for toddlers on Long Island!