7/05/2014 4:56pm, #11Falling for Judo since 1980
7/06/2014 9:21pm, #12
I guess I am just looking for BJJ specific stuff we could do together that would help reinforce what he's learning at class. As we've discussed I am not a big believer in leaving MA in the classroom, but making it the "spice" of life.
BJJ training is hard, but I think if I bring it into the "home" so to speak, it'll help.
What would Helio Gracie do in my situation? What kind of games do you think he played with his little ones? If I was further along with my training I'd know more, but life is short, and I know this time with my boys will end before I am ready.
7/07/2014 5:08pm, #13
Today they are in the first day of the British Soccer Camp(yes, even in Boundary County ,Idaho).
They absolutely love it, and will play in the local rec league in August-Early October. They were totally psyched to get going this morning, and happy as clams when I picked them up at lunch.
I played soccer when I was a kid and in high school. I was pretty damned good at it too. I've tried for several years (my 10 year old started when he was 5 or 6) to work on soccer skills with them, even to the point of going and watching the camps in Canada (where they started out). Their grandma got them a mini soccer goal, even.
Not much interest in practicing out side of the camps with me, and of course competing (which is what they really love to do) in the league each fall.
So, I tried, and I dropped it. If they ask about kicking the ball around, I'm all for it. If not, I let it slide and we make a decision about what we want to do.
My point is, just don't go all gung ho on BJJ training at home. Kids interests and viewpoint are a lot different than adults. Hell, even adults have different levels of dedication and interest for that matter (see my posts about coaching non-judo crazy kids or adults). Let your son's attitude and interests guide what you attempt to do.
For kids, I've found often it's more about the social interaction than learning stuff. A sense of accomplishment, yeah, they get that, but it's not exactly the same as for adults.
YMMV, Rabbit, keep up the good work .Falling for Judo since 1980
7/07/2014 8:33pm, #14
7/07/2014 8:44pm, #15
SO tonight was his first class. I didn't train tonight afterwards, wanted the night to be just for him (not to mention my body needs another day to heal after building a 25 square foot replica of Mordor yesterday at Asbury Park beach).
Couple of observations.
He started out shy and embarrassed, I think because all the other kids were lively and talkative. He's the smallest in his class, but makes friends quickly. He was very quick to tell me the exact number of friends he made during class (3).
Endurance he made it through class without puking or passing out or giving up. All good signs.
He worked with a brown belt and a kid his size, separate from the main group, to learn some basic stuff.
On the ride home he informed me that while the chokes he learned hurt a little, he was OK. And that he now has a "technique" he can use on his older brother.
That, I was very quick to put a stop to.
I realized that aside from some basic home workouts together, I needed to set the "groundrules" for BJJ.
I came up with 5 so far. If anyone else has an interesting rule to add, feel free to suggest one (appropriate for a 2nd grader, please).
Rule 1: Listen, ask a good question, but don't talk out of turn.
Rule 2: Sip water, don't chug it
Rule 3: If you feel sick or dizzy, stop and tell
Rule 4: Don't get angry, or try to hurt anyone
Rule 5: No jujutsu on your brother until purple belt.
7/08/2014 6:46am, #16
- Join Date
- Apr 2014
- Melbourne, Australia
8/24/2014 9:57am, #17
- Join Date
- Apr 2014
- Atlanta, GA
Wow, I wish I hadn't been in the middle of moving when you first posted this. I think this may be the only topic ever discussed here that I have first hand, expert level knowledge of, lol! That said, the following is just my opinion and philosophy of what has worked for me as a father up to this point.
When starting your kid off early, there are a lot of dynamic variables you have to try your best to keep in balance at all times. It can be tricky, that said, I'll try to run down the list of all the...points of attention (I don't like the term 'rules' unless it's something concrete like "No Jiu Jitsu on your brother" or "When your training partner taps, immediately let go" as most of this stuff can be slightly flexible depending on the exact context) I think you should keep in mind. Also, I apologize in advance, as a decent portion of this is going to be me venting about stuff other parents do that irks me.
Now, I'm assuming due to you saying that you have high hopes for the kid that you're similar to me in that you want them to have fun, but you also don't want to waste your money and this is more than just something for him to do and you want him to reach his full potential in it, so all this crap I type here will go above and beyond "ways to make it fun" for him.
1. If something hurts, TAP....but once he hits 8 or 9, depending on his maturity, make him understand the difference between "oh crap, if I don't tap, this pain is signaling that this could lead to a broken arm" and "oh crap, let me tap as soon as someone whips their leg over for an armbar". You want them to be safe, but not pussies.
For example, where my kid practices now, there is a kid who taps as soon as he sees the setup coming for anything, be it triangle, armbar, americana, etc. That kid is 11 years old if I'm not mistaken. His dad swears up and down he's taught him leglocks, heelhooks, and all this other good stuff you can't actually do in class, but apparently, he hasn't taught him any basic escapes or anything about basic toughness, as his son is taping to my daughter as soon as she gets s-mount with his arm. That's defeating the purpose of learning Jiu Jitsu.
This is one hell of a fine line to walk...sometimes I've seen my daughter get her arm bent too much for my tastes, but she says that it didn't hurt. Now I trust her judgement on that more as I see her tap to these more advanced kids she's rolling against now (and that makes sense, as their armbars would probably be technically perfect, so all the pressure is attacking where it should be), but it took a long time and a lot of talking to get me more comfortable with that. Even then, you have to know when to call tap for them.
Think Rocky in Rocky IV and knowing when to "throw the damn towel!" Rocky had to walk that fine line between his friend's safety and his friend's pride. Obviously, Rocky waited too long. I guess you have to let them experience some pain and it can hurt to watch, but you have to know where to draw the line.
This situation was apparent with my daughter's first opponent at her event yesterday. My daughter had an armbar put on pretty damn good and the girl wasn't tapping, but her coach tapped (or attempted to tap, as this referee was a bit too liberal in his pain/risk assessment management for kids) for her. The coach's move was spot on, as that was a bad situation that wasn't going to get any better for his fighter. It looked pretty bad, but the girl didn't seem all that hurt by the armbar once she sat up. My daughter is freakishly athletic and strong for her age/size/gender, so I was afraid for the other kid's safety once it had gone too far due to the ref ignoring everyone (including the coaches of both teams and the parents of both competitors) screaming desperately for the tap.
Since I can't post links yet, youtube Amelia Copa Gi Gracie Brandon 1st match and you'll see exactly what I'm talking about. This was a situation where everyone did everything right except the ref. Her coach first yelled out instructions for an armbar escape, then waited maybe one second tops to see if there was going to be any wiggle room out of it, then once he saw it wasn't happening, he called the tap for his fighter. I understand the girl not tapping if it didn't hurt, but here's the key: she has to understand that her coach and parents are just doing what's in her best interest at this point, and they will do the same thing 100 out of the next 100 times it happens. If the child doesn't want that to be the outcome, then the child has to focus on not being in that situation, so work on your armbar escapes...as no one is going to sit here and watch her get her arm bent into something that resembles the shape of a rainbow.
YOU have to put that in your son's head. Not his coach, not anyone else. He has to understand that even taking the parental love aspect out of it, you have to protect the fighter so the fighter can fight another day. My daughter was mad at me for tapping for her once, and I broke it down to this: "It's like this, would you have rather kept trying to fight it and had a greater than 90% chance of breaking your arm and not rolling for the next six months to a year, or just tapping now and still being able to go to practice three times a week to get better so you won't be getting armbar'ed as much?" She got it.
2. Once he becomes competitive at it and wants to 'win' more while rolling in class, you MUST emphasize "You don't LOSE when practicing on the mat, you LEARN." This falls in line with #1, as you have to address the pride factor. It's always there, and it always has to be addressed. After reinforcing this for awhile, they begin to ask how to do certain escapes or what to do while in certain situations. When my daughter used to come off the mat fuming for having 'lost' to a kid she probably shouldn't have, instead of giving her speeches about getting better or how it's ok, I started asking her "How did you get in that situation?" After waiting for an answer there, the next question is "What can we do next time to not be in that situation?" then go home and drill it.
In the beginning you have let him know that if he isn't losing, he isn't learning. The father of the best Gi Jiu Jisu kid I know told me during my daughter's first week of class that his son lost every match for a year before he started to get better. Now this kid is sick. He's 11 years old and actively works on his De La Riva and X-Guard while just about every other kid in class doesn't even have a quality spider or butterfly guard. He's leagues beyond any other kid his age I've seen in a gi.
It' impossible to imagine him losing to anyone in his age range, much less losing everyday for a year, but it happens. So once his urge to win kicks in, quickly start drilling it into his head that the best guy in Jiu Jitsu has been tapped thousands of times. He won't beleive it at first, but once it's reinforced by the coach, and the best kids and their parents, it'll start sinking in and he won't think every roll is a life or death, must win situation even though you want to do your best.
3. Be realistic about your child's ability, both as a Jiu Jitsu practitioner and their natural athletic ability. The best kid I know in Gi Jiu Jitsu I spoke about in #2 is the most nonathletic kid in the world, according to his own father. Kind of crazy for a dad to say, but by him acknowledging that early on, he's been more patient with explaining things to his kid and emphasizing technique to where this kid is an 11 year old Orange belt genius.
In some cases the other kid is just better. When my child is rolling against an orange belt, or some talented yellow belt, she isn't supposed to win. I still look for obvious mistakes that can be fixed, but I have no false expectations of her tapping an orange belt.
The other side of that is you have to hold the kid accountable for his ability as well. If he is naturally inclined to learn it, then make him work on his mistakes. Like I said, I hold my kid to a higher standard because everyone isn't born with those physical gifts, so she should try to maximize the potential of them. I tell her that if you're going to be upset when you 'lose', but it's due to you making the same mistake over and over again, how about putting more effort towards thinking and executing smarter next time? Once he gets mad at losing once you know he's good enough to be better but just isn't focusing, that's when it becomes time to get more serious about getting better, IMO.
Gotta run for now...but I'll continue this with more later unless you see no need for it.
9/20/2014 10:43pm, #18
- Join Date
- Sep 2014
- Las Vegas
The Gracie Bullyproof DVD set is excellent! My kids, 3yo and 2yo, love playing Jiu Jitsu and the Gracie games are fun and educational. I love rolling with my boys and it's one of our favorite activities together.
I'm taking them both to the Gracie World's tournament here in Las Vegas tomorrow. :)