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YOUTH JIU JITSU TOURNAMENTS
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YOUTH JIU JITSU TOURNAMENTS

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Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has become an international icon, as the popularity of the Brazilian art is reaching bold new heights. With the rise of high level grappling on promotions like the ADCC, Who's Number One, Polaris, and subversiv bjj, students worldwide have a clear indication of the level they need to achieve to be successful on the professional world circuit. Training to become a successful competitor takes hard work, extensive concentration, and consistency in a student's mat time. Students that begin their journey as a child have a greater advantage of achieving technical proficiency, then students that begin at later stages in life. Learning the art over a longer period of time will be more beneficial than students that progress too quickly, as the art can take a significant amount of time to master.

What This Article Covers:

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BUILDING A COMPETITION GAME STYLE

Becoming a successful competitor begins inside of an academy, and this is where students can hone in on improving their skills. First of all every young student needs continuity, training once a week just won't cut it, as students will need multiple sessions every week to discover the flow of Jiu Jitsu. Once a student can understand how their body can move, and what techniques they are proficient with, then building a game plan becomes achievable. Learning how the mechanics work is important for finishing submissions, but even more important to know how to defend them. Building offensive attacks can start by having a solid defense system, and this is the backbone to having a strong competition game. It is important to know how long is a jiu jitsu match, so students can replicate this in their training sessions. There is no real trick when it comes to training for a competition, students just need to put their heads down and train hard. Repetition is vital, and this can be for learning a technique, or for getting in some serious rounds with their training partners.

Help your youth competitors develop and become more successful BJJ athletes with the help of champion Vagner Rocha!

competing at the youth level

Another important aspect of training for competition is understanding the points game. To some competitors this can be boring and methodical, but it can also be extremely advantageous when they are in the middle of a competition match. In modern grappling we tend to see a lot of stalemates, and this means competitors going the distance, as one of them will win on points. Students will need to become masterful at controlling the position so they can neutralise their opponent. This includes understanding how to transition from one control position to another so they can rack up the points. If the student is dynamic with their movements, then this style of fighting can still be exciting to watch, as there are many intricate ways to sweep opponents, pass opponents guards, or even take the back of their opponent. In training it is important to explore these positions, and practise maintaining control so that when they are in a BJJ tournament, their skills will be extremely proficient. All students should have an aim to submit their opponent, but the necessity of securing control positions ultimately will lead to victory when a submission is not possible.

COMPETING AT THE YOUTH LEVEL

Teenagers that begin to compete in BJJ tournaments will often discover a passion for competing. Being a teenager can be tough at the best of times, so they will need to bolster their confidence levels, and use the inspiration of the older and higher ranked members inside their academy. Competing is a great way to battle test a student's game style, and can be just plain fun. One of the most important reasons for a young student to compete is so they can enhance their ability to defend themselves in a real life scenario. Even though young students have many different restrictions on the rule sets during their competitions, they will still learn a serious amount of skills, and gain a huge amount of fight experience. There are many different competitions that young students can enter on their local BJJ scene, as well as state, and national championships. After these levels students can compete in the pan am brazilian jiu jitsu championships, and then the world championships. The infrastructure is there for kids divisions, giving them a unified platform for them to achieve success.  

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ENABLING THE RIGHT MINDSET

The most important aspect that a young BJJ practitioner needs to encompass is having the right mentality towards their training. Teenagers can often be distracted by many different aspects of their personal lives. Young students are constantly fighting against peer pressure, and the warped mentality behind their image. It can be easy to get caught up wanting to look good in front of other people, but teenagers must learn to be humble. Showing humility on the mats is like embodying the spirit of the warrior, as this is a mental ability that will serve teenagers well. An important factor in what may hinder a teenagers mental capacity, can be an abundance of mental health issues like depression, anxiety, and low self esteem problems. Training in BJJ will give teenagers an excellent schedule they can focus on, which can help distract them from their problems. Spending time surrounded by good people inside of the BJJ community will have a long lasting effect on the mental aptitude of a teen. Finding a place inside of the community will help teenagers to work through their problems, and this will effectively help them to harness the best of their abilities. 

Winning competitions is all about having the right mindset, as the rigorous training process can be grueling, and teenagers will need to persevere while maintaining a sufficient balance to help them thrive. One of the most common questions that young people in BJJ will ask is can you make money in jiu jitsu, and even though they can, it will take some serious training, hard work, and exposure to make this a reality. This comes back to the mindset factor, as a student must develop an incredible mindset, and a strong work ethic if they want to excel in the art of BJJ. Once they have put their best foot forward, and given themself an opportunity to gain significant notoriety, they will need to take their opportunities and win competition to make a name for themselves. A successful grappler in the modern day has an extreme amount of confidence, an outstanding technical proficiency, a vast amount of technical knowledge, and has an ability to win in the big moments. This is achievable for any student, as all they really need is self belief, great training partners to practise with, and a professional bunch of coaches to guide them, and to inspire them.

PROGRESSING THROUGH THE BELT RANKING SYSTEM 

Progressing through the belt ranking system is never an easy feat for anybody, let alone a child. As they will start off extremely young with no idea about the mechanics involved with BJJ. The start of the journey for a child is mostly about engaging in playful activity, as this is the building blocks to helping them understand how to work together in a team environment. They will learn behaviours that will enable them to confidently, and successfully defend themself, as well as showing a duty of care towards their training partners. In the children's belt ranking process, the belts are achieved quickly, and this is due to the nature of a child's mentality. Children can be distracted quickly, and can often get bored with activities they participate in. This brings about a need to keep them excited, and engaged so they can easily move up in rank. From an extremely young age children will ask what is a bjj tournament, and after experiencing that first competition match, the majority of them are hooked. 

There are many ways to progress through the belt ranking process, but above all else consistency is the key. Students that start to continuously train, and put in hard work, and focus will ultimately find it easy to move up through the ranking order. Most instructors have their own set of criteria in order for a student to progress, as this can range from a different series of techniques, to their basic mentality towards their training partners. In most cases students need to be humble, and show integrity if they are to represent the next belt rank of a black belts academy. Understanding the mechanics of Jiu Jitsu is non negotiable in moving up the ranking order, as the whole point of becoming a higher level athlete in BJJ, is to be competent in many of the different movements available in the art. Instructors will add stripes to a student's belt, as they begin to understand the techniques that are taught, and once they have earned four stripes on each belt, they can then move on to the next coloured belt in the series.

The belt ranking system works in different belt groups, as each belt colour has three separate belts attached. Once a student has turned 13 they can then be promoted to a green and white belt, this is followed by the solid green belt, and finally the green and black belt. This belt colour signifies that the student has an outstanding form of Jiu Jitsu, a vast amount of technical knowledge, and is becoming even more competent in teaching, and guiding the younger students of their academy. Watching green belts compete at BJJ tournaments is a special sight to see, as it usually involves highly fast transitions, dynamic guard passes, extremely creative sweeps, death defying submission escapes, and extremely advanced submission finishes. When the student turns 16 years of age, and has impressed their instructor with their technical capabilities, they will skip the adult white belt. Students will be promoted from the green and black belt straight to an adult blue belt, and this can be an extremely exciting time for the young student. Quite often they will jump straight into BJJ competition as a blue belt, and even though they are usually out muscled by other older practitioners, their technical proficiency is slick, as they have an outstanding capability for winning.

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WHY YOUNG PEOPLE NEED BJJ

In today's modern era there is an overwhelming need for young people to learn self defense. Teenagers are in a vital transition period, as they are maturing and looking to fit into the world. Nowadays the world is ruled by image, as bullying and shaming plays an unfortunate role in many young people's lives. Teen suicide is high, and the notion of a parents teen hurting themself is unbearable. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu plays a significant role in combating many of these feelings that a teenager may go through. BJJ is a Martial Art that helps a child build confidence, and make plenty of friends, and building the self esteem of a child is extremely important for them to succeed in any part of their life. The learning process of BJJ will help a young student align their focus, and put their energy into a better way of living.

The world can be an extremely dangerous place, and understanding how to navigate through this world only comes through life experience. What BJJ can offer a teenager is not only to defend themselves, but understanding two aspects, how to identify danger, and how to de-escalate a dangerous situation. BJJ will give teenagers the tools required to stay safe, and understand how to take the appropriate precautions necessary. Another important component that BJJ gives a student is the strength and conditioning factor. Spending a significant amount of time training in BJJ will turn students into athletic beasts, as they will increase their strength, their cardio, their agility, their flexibility, and their dexterity. The rigorous training processes involved with Jiu Jitsu are well known amongst the BJJ community, and even though it can be a tough workout, teenagers will thrive in this kind of atmosphere.

Help your youth competitors develop and become more successful BJJ athletes with the help of champion Vagner Rocha!

youth jiu jitsu tournament

Another good reason why teenagers should train in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is for the academic challenge. BJJ is a game of strategy, and has a lot of similarities to the game of chess. Teenagers will be able to use their creativity to solve many of the BJJ problems they may encounter. This is another good reason why teenagers that train in BJJ should be competing in tournaments, as they will learn how to strategize their way through a real life fighting scenario. During live rolling rounds in BJJ, teenagers will be put under highly stressful situations, and even though this sounds scary, it is exactly what they need to be able to improve their ability to make the right decisions while under pressure. This is an important component of learning BJJ, as this is how students will save themselves in a real life altercation. BJJ is a Martial Art that anyone can learn, and to watch teenagers participate, and evolve because of its teachings, is amazing to see for the whole BJJ community. 

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