Martial arts brings many benefits—both to adults and kids alike. It’s no wonder then that it’s always a popular extracurricular activity, especially among kids. It keeps them physically active, gives them opportunities to socialize, and best of all, they learn new skills. If you’re like any of us, though, you’ve probably also started wondering—with all the options out there, what is the best martial art for kids?
When we talk about martial arts for kids, we’re not really thinking of putting them inside the ring. We’re thinking more along the lines of providing a safe space for them to grow, discover their interests, and discover themselves in the process.
With all that in mind, finding the best martial art for kids isn’t always as simple as it seems. With so many options to pick from, there are a few things that need to be considered before making a decision. Of course, while we want to expose our kids to gradual, achievable challenges to nurture their growth, we also want to ensure their training environment is safe from harm. The question then becomes: what martial art offers the best opportunity for growth while minimizing the risk of injuries?
We’ve given it some thought and come up with a tentative answer: objectively speaking, BJJ may be the best martial arts for your kids. In this article, we’ll tell you exactly why we think so.
Here are some reasons why should enroll your kids in a BJJ class:
1 It is a fun way for your kids to exercise
If you’ve ever known any kid at all in your life, then you already know that kids have a lot of energy. They are naturally curious beings seeking adventure in their everyday lives, and they’re usually bouncing off the walls because of it. BJJ provides opportunities for your kids to burn that excess energy. Consequently, it gives their bodies the exercise they need while having fun and learning in the process.
As your kids train in BJJ, they learn to manage physical stresses and hone their strategic abilities. They become more in tune with their bodies, and develop better coordination as a result.
Simply put, one of the major reasons BJJ is the best martial art for kids is that it engages them and lets them exercise without getting bored.
(Look at this! How can you be bored when your partner’s trying to shake you off their back?)
2 BJJ fosters discipline and a growth-oriented mindset
When kids enjoy an activity, they have an intrinsic need to pursue it and learn every aspect of it. They look forward to every training session, committing themselves in the process. Perhaps a sense of competition with their peers drive it. Perhaps it’s a sense of competition against their own self. The kids’ BJJ belt system, in particular, provides a sense of achievement that further incentivizes them to work hard.
This hones their sense of discipline and drives them to actively maintain their routines. Such routine-building skills, in turn, may later translate into organizational skills that will help them focus on the goals they set for themselves.
4 Kids learn not to get violent
The gentle art of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu means that even if you’re engaged with an opponent, you don’t necessarily have to get violent. Contrary to popular misconceptions, kids in martial arts aren’t out to use their skills to throw their weight around. Instead, kids in martial arts learn techniques that keep them calm and control of their emotions.
Ideally, whatever skills they learned will never be used and they never have to engage with an aggressor. In the event that they do though, there’s a good chance they won’t do anything beyond what they have to, to get out of a situation.
5 BJJ carry the least risk of serious injuries
Kids learn BJJ in a safe environment supervised by well-trained professionals. Since it’s more about manipulating your opponent’s body rather than pummeling them to the ground, it’s very unlikely for your kids get concussive hits and broken bones. If they were to get injured, it shouldn’t be worse than maybe a few bruises here and there.
6 It improves mood and memory
Sports like BJJ that elevate the heart rate increases blood flow to the brain. This results in the production of oxytocin, also known as the ‘feel-good’ hormone, improving mood in general. The increased blood flow also stimulates the formation of new connections in the brain, resulting in sharper memory. This is why active kids are generally happier and perform better in school.
7 It teaches kids to bounce back from defeat
Each day brings a fresh wave of wins and defeats in BJJ. Since it’s a very technical sport, a single mistake could turn the tides. As much as we want to protect our kids from every bad thing, they inevitably will encounter setbacks in life. By knowing the taste of defeat and how to deal with it, they figure out how to bounce back from it faster. This is a very important skill that will serve them well as they go through life.
BJJ prepares your kid for the real world
The best martial art for kids is the one that improves their confidence. After all, a confident kid feels ready to take on the world, and the more they put themselves out there, the better opportunities they get in life.
Social interaction, by itself, and making friends already are a massive confidence boost, especially to young, impressionable kids.. Add that to the fact that BJJ provides an avenue for them to develop competence, your kids will grow up ready to take on life’s challenges.
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