Longevity and children in Jiu Jitsu

Kroyler’s Pro-Tip on longevity and children inJiu-Jitsu...

Lets just go from question to question.

1.How to keep children interested in Jiu-Jitsu? Well there are 2 questions here. 1, how to keep them interested while they are young? And 2, how to keep them interested as they get older?

a.How to keep children interested while they are young? There are several things that need to align for your child to remain interested:

i.Environment – The school they train at must foster a happy environment, meaning the child should be happy and excited to go to the gym. Not feel like when they get there that they are in a maximum-security prison. They should feel that they can have fun and enjoy themselves at the school.

ii.Teaching – Teaching children takes a special person, its difficult teaching children. I believe Joe Rogan said its like “trying to herd a pack of wild kittens”. The Instructor must be capable, have the personality for it, and they must make it fun. If the instructor is not having fun, or he is sucking the fun out of the room the children won’t want to be there. The best way to learn is to have fun.

iii.The other students–Kids will always have more fun if they are around friends and their friends are having fun. It’s a synergetic effect. The more friends they make and the more fun their friends are having the more fun they’ll have and in turn they’ll do the same for the other kids.

iiii.Parents – Parents need to shut the hell up. For real. You are not the coach, you may or may not train, you are not to ever coach over your coaches and/or add extra pressure to the children while they train. Like yelling things like don’t tap, or don’t lose etc. etc. You child is to have fun and not be pressured. Pressure makes children resent training.  You should be inspiring them to train or encouraging them to train not adding pressure during the training. These are children after all.

v.My advice? Having games every so often in class and gym events for children only is extremely helpful. Because they’ll identify each other as friends and develop a bond, this will make it easier for them to have fun, it'll make it easier for the instructor as the kids will be generally happier. Children or rather people learn best when they are enjoying themselves.

b.How to keep them interested long term, meaning from 6 years to 18 years of age:

i.Do all the things we discussed above.

ii.At home don’t bring up training unless its in an encouraging or inspiring way. Example, if your child is frustrated because it can’t understand or execute a move share a story that they can relate to.

iii.Make it about spending time together with each other. Not about who’s better. You shouldn’t ever want to compete with your child. If you do you’re an idiot. Inspire, drive, and encourage, not belittle, talk shit, or create a pissing contest with your child.

iiii.Don’t force them to train all the time. Make it so that they want to go train and then you wont ever have to force them to train. No one likes being told what to do. Better to, if they are having a bad day, let them not train if they don’t want to. Encourage them to want to be there. You can even tell them you wish they would train more. Example, Dr. Howe told his daughter that she couldn’t drive (she was 15 at the time), she started training when she was 9-10 years old, until I thought that she was proficient enough that whoever tried raping her wouldn’t think it was worth it. She didn’t want to train anymore, in fact she hadn’t trained in 1 or 2 years prior to that. But she really wanted that license and the ability to drive. That girl was in class every day for months.

But don’t ever let your child be lazy. Its easy to be too laxed and allow your children to not train at all. They need to have jiu-jitsu in their lives all the time so that they know they will always have that to go back to. There’s a difference between a child needing a day off or wanting one. You’re the parent, figure that shit out. But I feel that you ought to make jiu-jitsu a constant in their lives.

v.16… There’s something about the age of 16. If you can keep your child interested until they are sixteen, they wont, generally speaking, ever leave or quit jiu-jitsu. By that point it has become a huge chunk of who they are.

2.Tips on coaching a kids class

a.Fun. Have fun. IF you are having fun the kids will have fun. If kids have fun, they’ll want to be there, and they’ll improve.  So, enjoy yourself.

b.For the younger children, motivate them with games every so often. For pre-teens create an eventevery once in a while aimed for them. Like a movie night or a pool party. This as a reward to good behavior, attendance, etc. etc. Example: tell them that at the end of the summer you’ll have a pool party for the kids that attend at least X number of classes. And make the pool party for the kids. Meaning parents don’t drink, parents don’t make it about them. Make the pool party about the preteens and teens. Or the same for the younger folks where you reward them with a game of dodgeball or a movie night at the gym if they attend so many classes. It’ll give them incentive to come in. But if they don’t make the cut don’t let it slide. They need to understand that just as there are rewards there are consequences.

c.Keep the techniques simple and efficient. Your child does not need to learn reverse DLR. Your child needs to learn to have a solid base, a solid foundation, good balance and coordination.

d.Don’t pit kids against one another. Rather teach them as early as possible that in the school they are family and that they are going to grow and improve as a family together. Minor friendly rivalries will happen on their own, ask anyone with a younger or older sibling, those are okay and healthy. But its important that we keep those in check as well.

3.What to do if their interests wane and they want to quit?

a.Don’t let them

b.Literally don’t let them.

c.Let them attend fewer classes if they want but don’t let them flat out quit. Children quit because they don’t like something, in a jiu-jitsu class that can usually be easily fixed. As an example:  If a child doesn’t like rolling with a specific kid, the coach can ensure that doesn’t happen for a period of time.

d.Help them see the fun in the art. Don’t ask the kids how class went. Instead ask if they had fun. Don’t ask if they did well or if they won. Ask them what they learned instead. Don’t ask if they submitted a kid they may not particularly like. Ask them instead what they think they’ll learn next. As a parent don’t add pressure, add encouragement.

e.Again,don’t let them quit.

4.Benefits of knowing Jiu-Jitsu during school years?

a.Jiu-Jitsu creates, builds, instills confidence in all practitioners. Confidence is the single most important thing to get a child through school. More importantly the confidence Jiu-Jitsu gives comes from within, not on the clothes or the leather jacket that you may wear. It’s permanent.

b.Jiu-Jitsu also teaches troubleshooting, under pressure troubleshooting. It will teach your children to solve both social and academic challenges they may face in school.

c.The ability to defend themselves. Even if your child is unaware that they are learning to fight, or they don’t understand the purpose of the self defense techniques, or they see grappling and rolling as a fun game, your child is actually learning to protect themselves. This means should someone try to hurt or bully or take advantage of your child they won’t even be able to. Your child may react out of instinct or reflex. Meaning your child will always be able to handle themselves.

d.Your child will learn discipline as Jiu-Jitsu ranking is far longer of a process than it is in other martial arts. This means no instant reward. No short cuts. Its always about earning your rewards instead of being entitled to them.

5.How to keep their interest at home as a parent?

a.I think we already answered this one. Make it a family affair, be encouraging.

b.Make it fun

c.Oh, and yadon’t let them quit.

d.Lessen frequency of attendance but not quit.

6.How to encourage them to face opponents more athletic then them and they keep just getting smashed?

a.Again,make sure they understand that losing is only losing if they don’t learn from it.

b.Help them see the small victories.

c.Teach them that quitting when things get tough gets them nowhere in life. But that to overcome tough challenges you must figure a way around the problem. Find a solution. Then it becomes a game. A puzzle.

d.They only get discouraged if they feel they are disappointing you. You should then reevaluate your parenting. Your child feels they need to make you proud, losing or a loss, may mean to them that they failed to make you proud. Teach them better. And if you’re ONLY proud of your child in their successes then you are garbage and you are the problem.

7.As a sport that isn’t seasonal they never get a break like you do in order sports. How do you keep them engaged and not bored?

a.Well this one is tough for me. Because I never understood seasonal sports. It’s a silly idea to me. In Brazil that doesn’t exist. Seasonal sports that is.

b.I mean why is basketball only played in the spring? You literally play in a weatherproof court…. Why only in the spring?

c.Or swimming being a fall/winter sport? Weird just weird.

d.To me I think we may condition our children to only have to focus on an activity for a predetermined amount of time. And maybe that is our fault. I believe we should make jiu-jitsu a lifelong pursuit. An endless journey so to speak. A lifestyle. We do that so they wont ever stray from the path and wewon’thave to worry about the seasonal sport idea. It will simply be something that they just do. It’ll be a part of who they are.

e.Particularly I feel the seasonal sport idea is moronic. All the best athletes in any sport do it all year long. They find a way. So why do we teach our children to be an average jack of all trades?

Kip your funeral is this Saturday. Don’t worry no one will shed tears for you. There may be a party if anything.

Paul you ought to quit and have Nicole read for you. Although I was impressed you could read abhorrent.

Good luck Claude this weekend on your competition and good luck Morgan and Jamahal on your upcoming fights.

Kip Dice