I always ask parents what they are bringing their kids to Jiu Jitsu for. Its a weird question. When you sign your kid up for soccer, nobody asks why you “really” signed him up. You hope he or she learns the game and has fun. But martial arts has long been viewed (and rightfully so) as a way to help its practitioners become the best version of themselves. So before a kid ever steps on my mats, I want to know why.
There is no wrong answer. Fun, discipline, fitness, all these buzz words come up all the time and martial arts teachers are happy to use them in their sales pitch. But confidence, how in the world do you teach confidence?
The short answer is you can’t. Confidence is something that comes from inside a person, no one can gift you confidence. To me, confidence is knowing that I have what it takes to not only survive a challenge but overcome it. The challenge always changes, but the skill of self reliance doesn’t.
So if you can’t teach confidence, how do kids obtain it from the martial arts?