Tip of the Week: Martial Arts for Kids

Think back to when you were a kid, if you ever watched any karate movies or tv shows like Enter the Dragon, Karate Kid, Bloodsport, Mutant Teenage Ninja Turtles, Power Rangers, Fist of Legend, Police Story, and countless others. Then you know the feeling of yearning to understand what all these individuals were capable of. Even if when you didn’t know any martial arts you may have even tried going around pretending you do, karate chopping any object in your vision, jump kicking family members, and trying to break small pieces of wood as if you had iron fists. Think back to that feeling and there lies the power of martial arts. The sensation of empowerment, confidence, and invincibility rushes through the body and suddenly you think you’re unstoppable.

Introducing children to martial arts at a young age can help them become more self-confident and be able to aid them in handle the scrutiny of their peers. They will build strength in their body, but they will also gain mental fortitude and develop a strong self-will. Bullying has changed; this doesn’t just happen at school, now the attack can come home. If a child is prepared to affectively negate bullying by others they will become happier and feel safe in their surroundings.

With several martial arts available in every city, it can become overwhelming on which to choose between the several forms of Karate, Taekwondo, Judo, Aikido, Wrestling, Sambo, Jiu Jitsu and many other options available. I have trained in Kempo Karate, Muay Thai, Kickboxing, Sambo, Taekwondo, and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu; from my experience I found that Jiu Jitsu is one of the best self-defense and self-improving martial arts available. Why is Jiu Jitsu the best martial arts for kids? It is due to the techniques of engaging conflict, a Jiu Jitsu fighter has the overall advantage in a street fight. When someone tries to harm you, they tend to try to grab first. Once you have entered into grappling with someone who is proficient at Jiu Jitsu, then you’re in their domain. The premise of why Jiu-Jitsu was created was because there were individuals that were too small and too weak to use other forms of martial arts. A famous story is one of Helio Gracie being taught Judo and forms Japanese Jiu Jitsu by Mitsuyo Maeda. Helio was too young, small, and weak to learn judo, he watched his brothers and created ways to use leverage and technique to defeat larger and stronger opponents.

To all the parents out there unsure about Jiu Jitsu know this; Jiu Jitsu is not a confrontational martial art. Practitioners avoid fights and avoid trying to purposely hurt individuals. But, when threatened they will have the knowledge to defend themselves and subdue their opponent without causing much harm to their attacker. Jiu Jitsu is one of the best martial arts for kids, teaches them self-defense, self-confidence, control, and above all respect.

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