So you’d like to train BJJ with your kid at home? Fantastic! This is a great opportunity for your child to start learning Jiu-Jitsu and fall in love with it, as well as for you to become a better Jiujiteiro yourself… Through the power of learning how to explain techniques and adapt BJJ to them!
But, in all honesty, how are you supposed to adapt Jiu-Jitsu training to your children?
It isn’t as tough as it may seem to be!
SAFE ENVIRONMENT FOR YOUR KID
The most important thing when training with your kid at home is to provide for a safe training environment. They’re not as coordinated as you are, so what may be safe for you doesn’t have to be safe for them – keep that in mind!
Therefore, remove absolutely all sharp-edged objects from the room you’re training in, and pad the walls as much as possible. You never know if your five year-old will stumble by mistake.
Secondly, always remember to keep it playful and fun during training. They’re a kid, not a grown-up who runs on slow, detail-oriented explanations. So, find ways to keep them engaged!
You can do this by playing BJJ-style games, both during warm-ups, drills, and „rolls“ alike. Make funny sounds, tickle them, tell jokes. Create imaginary aliens, who can only be kicked off of Earth if they’re submitted by a proper Armbar.
Just keep it fun!
DON’T MAKE IT TOO FUN, THOUGH
But on the other hand, don’t make a clown out of yourself. You’re supposed to teach and train Jiu-Jitsu with them, after all – so they need to actually learn BJJ.
But what should you teach them?
BASICS – THE DETAILS CAN COME LATER
Focus on the basics! Teach your kid the basic positions, what to do from them, the basic escapes and submissions… And then let him/her try what they’ve learned when you roll.
But also, don’t teach too much at once. Prioritize one set of positions and techniques first, before moving on to another. Your kid (like all kids) has a shorter attention span than you do – so too much stuff at once, and too many details can make them disinterested in training!
Whenever they do something particularly well, or when they place a lot of effort into it, reward your kid for it. This will get them to associate good feelings with BJJ even more than before!
But don’t reward them too much. You don’t want them to continue training just because of the belt promotion one day, do you?
BE KIND WHEN POINTING OUT MISTAKES
Your kid will make a ton of mistakes. Sometimes you’ll explain the same thing a million times, and they still won’t get it right.
When this happens, and it will happen often, be kind. Have patience, correct them with a smile and understanding… And think: would you continue training BJJ if your instructor lost his nerve whenever you did something wrong?
DEDICATED TIME SLOTS
It would be ideal if you could train Jiu-Jitsu with your kids, on the basis of a predetermined schedule every week. This will not only make it easier for you to organize yourself, but it will also instill a sense of habit into your child!
BRING THEM TO CLASS
And finally, you should try to bring your kid to class. If there’s a dedicated kids’ class, maybe you could roll him/her up into it. If not, perhaps they could sit on the sidelines and watch you train.
With this, they’ll develop a deeper understanding and appreciation for what Jiu-Jitsu really is – and why it’s so great.
Learn games, drills, and techniques designed for your kids to have fun, while at the same time sharpening their Jiu-Jitsu skills.
- Build a constructive environment for your child to flourish – this one of a kind instructional lets you introduce Jiu-Jitsu to your kids without the intimidation of a larger group class!