The number one reason why most people take up a martial art is for self-defense, and pretty much any style is a great way to learn how to defend oneself. Not only will the martial arts teach you the techniques to defend yourself, but also the way to think about defending yourself. They also help you build up the reflexes you need if you’re ever in a pickle, and give you the confidence to fight back – which leads me to my next topic…
As children become more proficient in their selected style of martial arts, their confidence gets a big boost. They become more self-assured and confident. Their Teacher’s encouragement goes a long way to help them achieve this goal, but the confidence level will extend far beyond the Dojo (Martial Arts Academy).
3. Belts and Ranking:
I know that this might seem like a stupid reason at first, but you’d be surprised how much belts and ranking help build your child’s confidence and their desire to succeed. For the uninitiated, most Martial Arts styles use a system of Colored belts to indicate the knowledge and skill levels of their practitioners. In many cases the first belt promotion can be attained in as little as a few weeks and when children obtain that first belt, it shows them that with the right motivation, they can succeed. One belt is always not enough, once a child passes one belt test he or she is already thinking about the next one. Belts are a great way to help children track their progress and motivate them to strive higher.
The mantra of any martial art is ‘practice makes perfect’ There is constant repetition in drills and practices with emphasis on details and rhythm. Techniques are repeated over and over. Even while sparring or competing – where a martial artist shows how creatively he or she can apply their well-honed skills – there are still rules and protocols to be followed. All of this teaches children to respect one another, their opponents and colleagues, and how to play games fair and square – lessons that follow them in their non-Martial Arts lives. It also teaches them the benefits of frequent practice, and the patience to get there (Remember the Karate Kid and Wax On/Wax Off?!).
5. Emphasis on Individual Achievement:
In basketball there are only five starters, yet there are seldom only five people on a team – which means that someone has to start each game on the bench. This applies for most team sports as well. In team sports there are also positions, and each has connotations. Although teamwork and sportsmanship are emphasized in team sports, at some point you’ll need to explain to your child why they aren’t a starter or why their stuck in right field batting 9th instead of playing first base and batting cleanup. In the martial arts, however, each child’s success is based on his or her own individual merits. Yes, your kid may not be the most winning JuJitero in his Jiu-Jitsu class, but that will be because he tried and lost, and not because he wasn’t good enough to make it off the bench. Your child will also not be stuck on a ‘bad team’ as her own ambition will help her achieve success. Knowing that their own ambition and abilities will drive them to succeed, will lessen the chances that your child will say to you ‘I hate this sport’. Since each child has an opportunity to play, there is also no scapegoat to blame if they don’t win, and the opportunity to do better at the next tournament.
6. Gender Equity:
I am sure that while many of you would consider martial arts for their sons, not nearly as many would consider it for their daughters. However the martial arts are one of the few sports where both boys and girls can play together. There are also tremendous international opportunities in Women’s martial arts as well. Your daughter’s black belt will not be any easier for her to attain than your son’s black belt will be for him. It also gives brothers and sisters an opportunity to practice together and learn from one another as well (not to mention the convenience of having all of your kids in one place at a time). My Kids Jiu-Jitsu Instructor, Coach Kimberly Pruyssers, competed for the Academy representing US on an international level, and she is a great coach and an excellent Jiu Jitsu practitioner, in addition, one of few Americans Champions, in IBJJF Europeans, came from Kim in the women’s Jiu-Jitsu competition in 2018 in Portugal. Maybe your daughter will become a European champion too someday?
The typical 2-hour martial arts class will often be comprised of warm-up calisthenics, teaching and practicing of moves and possibly some sparring. The warm up and practice comprise the bulk of the time, and for that time your child will be constantly on the go – stretching, crunches, etc. The workout each child gets will not only assist in the natural development of his or her muscles, but also help them build stronger Cardio-Vascular systems. Even in the most active of team sports such as Basketball, Hockey, or Soccer, children don’t get that much of a workout simply because they generally don’t play the whole game and even if they do, there are still breaks in the action.
8. Respect for Strength:
The first thing the parents of (even slightly) mischievous children think about when they send their kids to martial arts class is: “Is my kid going to use this to hurt others?” Although this is a legitimate concern, it is always addressed early by instructors who remind students that the techniques they learn in the Academy stay in the Academy (except in self-defense), and shouldn’t be used to bully people (unless your Sensei is John Kreese from The Karate Kid). As children learn the ropes, they will learn to respect their newfound strength and techniques. They will also gain a disdain for bullying as well.
9. You can do it with them:
Many martial arts schools offer classes for both adults and children. While most do not run those classes simultaneously, they are usually one right after the other. This means that you can watch your children workout, and then they can watch you. If you have the proper space for it, you can practice with each other at home, and learn from one another. This will give you a special activity to use as a bonding tool with your kids. You can also become physically fit together. Granted, you can play Basketball in your driveway and have a catch in the backyard, but it is just not the same as working on your kids’ takedowns or sweeps in a group.
10. The Never-Ending Season:
Many team sports, especially those primarily played outdoors, or in specific weather (think Skiing, Hockey) are seasonal. The Martial Arts are a year-round affair. A bad tournament only puts you out until the next tournament, and your exercise routine remains constant the entire year. Having this consistency also helps build upon discipline, and allows children to progress very quickly.
11. They will exercise their minds too.
While all martial arts teach you to fighting strategies, Jiu-Jitsu really teaches much more. While learning Self Defense and throwing techniques, they learn Mechanical Physics. Combination techniques and follow-ups teach them improvisation.
12. Jiu-Jitsu isn’t about brute force, it is about control:
BJJ emphasized the concept of maximum efficiency. This is evident, as the crux of many Jiu-Jitsu techniques is not necessarily brute force, but using your opponents’ movements, leverage, and strength against him or her. While physical strength and size are important, mental strength is probably the most vital factor in competition.
13. Your child will be well coordinated (and we’re not talking about Fashion)
When you’re using your opponents’ moves against him or her, timing is everything. Many of the techniques in jiu-jitsu will simply not work if you don’t time them correctly. Feet, hands, hips, and head all need to move in fluid and exact timed motions to properly execute them. As your child practices he or she will learn more complex techniques and, in turn, will demonstrate better reflexes and coordination as a result.
15. Jiu-Jitsu is Universal
If a Karate practitioner travels to another city he or she might have a hard time finding a dojo to work out in that has the exact same style and philosophy as their home dojo. Not so for Jujiteros– because the techniques and principles are practically universal. A New Yorker can go to California for a week, and still find a place to play. There are over a hundred member countries in the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation, the competing Jujitero came from places as diverse as Cuba, Israel, and Kazakhstan as well as from the expected countries like Brazil, Japan, USA, Russia and France. Although the styles of teaching and ranking and promotion standards vary slightly from country to country – Jiu Jitsu is Jiu-Jitsu. Which helps your child stick with it, even into adulthood, as it will never be hard to find a dojo to train in, and the material will always be the same even if the location is not.
Our head Instructor Juan Pablo Garcia grew up in Ecuador and has received his Black belt degree in Jiu-Jitsu after training in South America and the U.S.A. being today 2th degree Black belt.
Prof. JP as he is commonly called in the Jiu-Jitsu because of the meaning of the word “professor” in Portuguese meaning Teacher received started BJJ and receive his black belt from Grand Master Carlos Gracie JR. son of Jiu-Jitsu Founder. (Carlos Gracie Sr.)
Prof. JP was also a Participated in Vale Todo fights back in Ecuador, now call MMA (having 11 fights back in South America) and one of the first Ecuadorian representing in international competition, experience in Jiu-Jitsu Competitions (being 1st, 2nd 3rd place at the SJJIF worlds, NAGA, Pan American and Nationals IBJJF Tournaments) Boxing for 7 years.
Our Instructor is the Founder of Escuela De Jiu-Jitsu, an organization focused in spread jiu-jitsu in the world making our Facility (Pacific Top Team BJJ) a very international Training center with students coming from all over the USA, Canada, Chile, Germany, Ecuador, Brazil to learn, train and teach.
Prof. JP had traveled the world to Learn, Teach, train and compete but mostly to spread Jiu-Jitsu in countries like Ecuador, Canada, Germany, and all over the USA. He has developed training camps to help teach and form instructors.
Escuela De Jiu-Jitsu Systems delivers the most innovative, and comprehensive Jiu-Jitsu training program for kids, adults, and women.
It is designed not just to teach theory, but to build unstoppable athletes.