We’ve written pretty extensively about the advantages of BJJ for kids, but it’s one of the main reasons parents get their kids involved in this particular activity. That makes it worth another post. The fact is, BJJ benefits kids on and off the mat, and here at Guerrilla BJJ in Reno, we see it every day.
BJJ Benefits for Kids on the Mat
You may have heard Brazilian Jiu-jitsu described as “the gentle art.” That’s mildly misleading, because anyone who has seen BJJ in action knows that there are plenty of explosive movements. It got this title because the goal of BJJ isn’t to harm, but to control your opponent. All grappling sports have the same general concept – shorten the distance between you and your opponent to initiate a clinch and give yourself the advantage. In BJJ, you’ll use a combination of different takedowns, trips and throws to get your opponent to the ground, and from there, you’ll try different holds and positions to gain control.
Now, think about what all of that requires. Awareness, focus, body control at the very least, right? Can you think of many (or… any) kids just full of those characteristics? Well, kids who roll consistently are well on their way! And in the process, they’re also working on physical skills like balance, flexibility, coordination, faster reflexes, and weight distribution. Here at Guerrilla, all of this happens during technique and rolling lessons that are carefully created to be fun engaging, challenging, and fun. The goal is to keep every kid in the room focused on the task at hand, and we do that with instructional games.
BJJ Benefits for Kids Off the Mat
Of course, everything that applies on the mat benefits kids in the real world as well. In class, we task our students with things that require focus, concentration, and physical effort, all of which benefits their minds and bodies. And there’s another benefit specific to martial arts in general and BJJ specifically. Part of the experience is trying, failing, and trying again. This is the best way to learn the value of hard work and keeping your eyes on the prize and committing to something even when it’s hard. BJJ also teaches the incredibly valuable lesson of effective problem solving – breaking down the problem first.
To the untrained eye, it may seem like your kid isn’t doing much more than rolling around. And at first, that’s mostly true. But in time, children who practice BJJ learn so much more than takedowns. Respect, success after failure, the value of hard work, confidence, even how to peacefully resolve a problem – these are the real benefits.
If you’re considering BJJ for your child, we hope you’ll consider Guerrilla BJJ at Freestyle Martial Arts Academy here in Reno. Consider this your personal invitation to tour our facility, meet our instructors, and sit in on a class. Learn more about our getting started offer now.