There are a plethora of sports and other fitness options for children, and parents often ask, ‘what is the best choice for my child?’. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu may not be on the top of the list, but perhaps it should be. There are some incredible benefits for children that parents should consider when choosing the right sport for their kids. Physically, mentally, and emotionally, BJJ can help build self-confidence, teaches kids to have respect for others, builds teamwork, in addition to the obvious fitness benefits.
BJJ for Kids – Why Your Child Should Train BJJ
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is highly athletic, and children will develop strength, agility and improve their flexibility, as BJJ utilizes nearly every part of your body. Virtually every sport is beneficial in the physical development of kids, but complex, contact sports like Jiu-Jitsu, take things even further. Increases in core strength and coordination, lower body fat levels, improved cardiac output, increases in strength and flexibility are not typically found all in one sport like it is here; BJJ offers all these physical benefits, all while solving complex puzzles and having fun!
Of course the physical benefits of BJJ are a primary reason to enroll your child, but the mental aspect is just as important. Few sports or martial arts allow children to develop the discipline and focus that Jiu-Jitsu does. It forces discipline, as you must keep trying until you finally master each technique. And when you do, ‘eureka!’ The pride and satisfaction kids get when they finally learn a technique is phenomenal. Learning a new BJJ technique also requires a high level of thought; kids must remember the steps involved in executing a technique appropriately and be patient while attempting to utilize such complex skills in the classroom. Jiu-Jitsu will give your child problem solving skills, and improve on their mental strength and clarity, while instilling in them a “never give up” attitude
BJJ promotes teamwork in a unique way. Working with peers to master a challenging skill together creates an incredible bond and camaraderie unlike any other sport. Training BJJ is done so in a team. Your child will learn to support and encourage other teammates, and they will do the same. The group of friends they train with will learn and grow alongside your child every day.
How Kids can Benefit from BJJ
Respect – Kids learn to respect not only their BJJ Master, but their peers and most importantly, themselves – you will see your child be more respectful at home and at school but also have more respect for themselves as they appreciate and recognize the hard work they are putting in on the mats.
Self Confidence – Placing kids in BJJ allows their confidence to grow, or even develop self-confidence where there was none before. The positive reinforcement they will receive when they finally learn a technique with their peers develops a strong sense of pride.
Building Character – The “never give up” mentality that BJJ promotes builds character in children, as the mentality spills over into their schooling and other facets of their life as well. The hard work and “stick-to-itiveness” that Jiu-Jitsu teaches will last in your kids minds for life.
Friends and Fun! – Of course, children deserve to have fun and always learn the most when they are. Jiu-Jitsu develops amazing bonds with their fellow training partners. Come in and watch a kids class – you will see first hand how much fun kids have with jiu-jitsu!
What is the Right Age to Start Practicing BJJ?
Parents often wonder what the appropriate age is for their child to begin training. It often depends on the child, often it is not just the physical limitations but the ability for kids to say focused and interested. Some academies start kids as young as 4, we at Marcus Soares BJJ Academy generally recommend kids start around the age of 5, depending on their maturity and focus, as every child is different, but honestly your kids will surprise you and may discover that this is the “thing” that is just right for them.
Just Try It!
We all want the best for our kids. So with all these benefits in mind, give your kids the chance to try this amazing activity and watch them develop life-long skills, self-confidence and amazing friends!