Beyond the Spectrum Martial Arts Therapy Program

Martial arts have been shown to be very beneficial for kids in general, and especially for kids on the Autism spectrum. The Beyond the Spectrum program was designed by autistic instructors with tertiary qualifications in education and autism for autistic children and adolescents to help them to access the many hidden benefits of martial arts including increased social skills, increased muscle tone, increased physical literacy and more!

The program aims to help kids develop their potential beyond their diagnosis – hence Beyond the Spectrum!

Beyond the Spectrum introduces specialised skill-based training for children who have different physical, intellectual, social, and emotional abilities, with further consideration for sensory processing issues. With that said, more emphasis is placed on building fundamental skills training with a strategic balance of Martial Arts.

This is effectively a pre-martial arts program designed to give neurodivergent kids some additional support whilst they develop the background skills and understanding of the ‘hidden’ curriculum before graduating into the general classes, which program and the instructor student ratio for the individual class will be determined by a one-on-one pre-evaluation of the individual’s current capabilities and needs.

The pre-evaluation is not a test. It is not a pass/fail thing, but it is a chance for everyone to meet, discuss your child’s needs, capabilities, likes and dislikes and to assess their current level of abilities relating to martial arts classes.

Once the one-on-one pre-evaluation is completed, we will place the child in the most appropriate class for their current developmental phase – being one-on-one sessions, very small group classes Beyond the Spectrum (essentially pre-martial arts), and finally the regular group classes.

During each class we run a warm-up; deliver a mat chat about the skill; run two or three skill-building drills; and then we have them demonstrate the skill to earn their skill-stripe. They must earn all 8 skill-stripes in order to graduate to the next belt level. Once they earn their next belt, they will continue to run through all 8 skills earning their skill-stripes with more challenging curriculum as they advance to each rank.

They graduate into one of the age-specific programs after they have successfully completed all of belts of the program.

Our class instructor holds a Graduate Certificate in Autism Studies, is the author of the Autism & Martial Arts Instructor Course and has taught many students on the spectrum over the past 35 years.

To maximise benefits participants will need to train at least twice a week. Class places are limited by instructor: student ratio’s (1:3) and places in the classes are allocated in advance.

Some people will find that the classes are eligible for NDIS for assistance to access community, social and recreational activities. A service agreement and invoices for this purpose can be provided upon request.

NDIA Reporting: Occasionally participants will require reports as requested by the NDIA to support their NDIS Plan. These reports can incur a fee depending on what is required, and this is billed in accordance with the NDIS price guide 2023/2024.

Southern Cross Martial Arts is a registered NDIS provider.


  1. Pre-evaluations conducted by appointment only.
    1. All classes are a fixed booking to comply with NDIS guidelines.
    1. Tuesday & Thursday at 4pm.
    1. Private Sessions by appointments only.
    1. Pre-evaluations by appointment on Monday or Wednesday.

The Beyond the Spectrum program is a program, not specifically a class. Beyond the Spectrum program students may be in a range of classes depending on their individual needs and capabilities. The goal of the pre-evaluation is to set the participants up for maximum benefit, not failure. The onboarding process for NDIS funded clients looks something like the chart below:

Admission to this program is subject to availability of class places dependent on the pre-evaluation results.

Southern Cross Martial Arts is a registered NDIS Provider.