If you’re looking for the perfect extra-curricular activity for your younger–look no further. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a martial arts which provides many benefits for children and should be your top pick for an after-school activity. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (or BJJ) is a martial arts with a history of empowering a physically smaller individual in the face of danger from a stronger, larger opponent. Here are a few of the benefits Jiu Jitsu has to offer kids.
1. Self Defense
Unlike many other forms of martial arts, Jiu Jitsu focuses on defense rather than attack. Martial arts such as karate and taekwondo have much more of a focus on attack, rather than focusing on the ability to protect oneself in the unfortunate event of the necessity to fight. A focus on defense ensures that children are not tempted to use their skills in an aggressive manner, while at the same time providing them with the tools they to protect themselves. Studies have shown that martial arts with a primary focus on self-defense make children less likely to engage in bullying or to become a victim of bullying.
Children who engage in bullying often do so because they feel inferior. Rather than waiting around to possibly be picked on, they attempt to make themselves appear bigger and badder than they really are to hide their sense of inferiority. BJJ is a physical discipline which focuses on empowering individuals regardless of their physical size. As a result of this focus, BJJ gives children confidence in their ability to defend themselves without causing a great deal of physical damage to their opponent.
With childhood obesity rates still so high; it is important to have children participate in activities which challenge them physically. BJJ engages a child’s entire body strengthening their muscles, keeping their heart healthy and developing their sense of balance and coordination. Balance and coordination (unlike strength building) are skills which will remain with a child even after their participation in Jiu Jitsu has come to an end.
Perhaps the most important benefit which children gain from participation in BJJ is learning focus and discipline. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a martial arts favoring the under-dog because students of BJJ are taught not to become discouraged in a fight when they find themselves on their back (a position typically thought of as a weaker stance). Students are taught to remain calm and focus their mind and body on the task they are trying to accomplish, no matter the position they find themselves in. Focus gives the student the proper mind-set to control their opponent, while discipline provides them with the necessary tools to accomplish this task. The skills of focus and discipline will benefit your child in the classroom and throughout the rest of their life.
When properly taught, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for kids makes a perfect physical activity for your child. Providing the benefits of self-defense, confidence, balance and discipline your child will not be taught to pick fights, but will have the ability to protect themselves if the necessity arises.
On top of all these benefits, BJJ is also lots of fun and a marvelous opportunity for quality social interaction. No matter their size or ability, your child will build confidence in themselves which will bring them many benefits in the present and in the future.