Thursday, August 25, 2011

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Masters Helping Kids Fight Bullying In School

The idea of training kids in an MMA fighting form would seem, on the surface, to be a very poor idea.

The Gracie Family, however, would disagree with you.  Legends in the UFC, the Gracie Family created their own style of Jiu-Jitsu 100 years ago and have taught thousands of students around the world since.  As a martial art, its is more about wrestling/grappling and subduing an opponent rather than harming them.

So when some younger members of the Gracie family heard how bad bullying was for thousands of kids across the United States (greater than 160,000 kids miss school a day for fear of bullying), they decided to take action.

Rener and Ryron Gracie are grandsons of the original creator of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, Helio Gracie.  They have created an at-home program called Bullyproofing, but have also been teaching young and old alike how to deal with bullies for many years.

I read this amazing article about how this program helped one young boy deal with a particularly nasty and persistent bully.    Not with the use of hitting or kicking, but with improved self-confidence and the knowledge and ability to simply restrain a physical bully.

These kinds of stories can only illustrate the more positive side to MMA fighting, and will help the sport grow as time goes on.  However, the real winners here are the kids who learn how to stand up for themselves with courage and honor.

No comments: