What to do if your child want’s to quit Jiu Jitsu? – Part 1
Benjamin Franklin was quoted saying, “nothing in life is certain except death and taxes”. I’d like to add to this and say that success and failure is also certain, and all we want in life is to be successful but success means different things to everyone.
It is tough being a Jiu Jitsu parent, but it is even tougher when your child tells you they want to quit and you see the benefit of what the sport has to offer. As a parent, all I want in my life is to know that I have given my children opportunities that will empower them for the future and know that there will be times where they will fall and rise. This has been the most important lesson I have tried to give them.
However, quitting has never been an option in anything they have done and they have always been required to see everything through to the finish.
In today’s society as a coach I’d like to say I’ve seen everything (clearly not) but when I see parents ask the child or allow the child to make financial decisions, I shake my head and wonder where did this come from?
These financial decisions I am talking about are related to the sport of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and it is from the purchase of uniforms to allowing the child to quit! As a parent it is our job to make financial decisions for our children, sure there might be times where you would like to give them a feeling of ownership within the decision however, it is the parent that is going to hand over the credit/debit card or cash.
The sport of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is hard. It is unlike Australian Rules Football, Rugby Union or Netball as it is combat based. It is all about time spent on the mat, learning, refining and testing oneself under pressure. The child is going to be sore, tired, lose and win. They will feel like not going at times or may even be intimidated by one of their teammates because they always get beaten by them. If it hasn’t happened to your child yet, it will. They may even want to quit.
Our question has to be why they want to quit and how can I get them to remain focused and stay with the sport.
Before you allow your child to quit, as the parent or guardian you have to ask yourself these simple questions;
Sometimes our children start Jiu Jitsu because their friends participate in it which is fantastic as it can help take the anxiety away when they first get on the mat, other times it is because the parents have heard from other people about the sport or even the child has indicated they would like the opportunity to experience the sport. Very soon the realisation sets in about how difficult the sport is when they may be being bested on the mat. The child may feel as though they are no good and compare themselves to their friends forgetting that that person may have been at training for a considerable amount of time longer than them.
The sport may not be in ‘vouge’ as their friendship circle changes and other external influences dictate what the child may be interested in. However, if you the parent or guardian sees the benefits that the sport of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu provides then you need to formulate some strategies that will see your child move past this change in attitude.
Parents pushing their children either during or after training, badgering the child asking questions why they didn’t do this or that when they have no idea of what it is like to step on the mat and experience being dominated by another human. Or parents just allowing their child to stop so they can try new things (which is fine but if this is a regular occurrence we may be allowing a bad habit to creep in).
So your child wants to quit, what can you do to change this attitude?
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