Competition is healthy. It encourages growth, respect and teaches patience and sportsmanship among so many other essential qualities necessary for tackling life.
Subjecting children to a bit of competition through sport is a great way to aid in developmental problem solving and self-acceptance.
There are so many benefits as to why competition is fantastic for kids, here are our top 5 reasons.
Top 5 Reasons Why Competition is Beneficial for Kids
1. Encourages Social Interaction
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a one on one face-off between two opponents who are equipped with skills and training through their teachers, mentors and peers.
Competing in this fashion requires an understanding of skill as well as the ability to read an opponent's behavior and body language to ultimately use the proper skill when necessary. It encourages kids to read their competitor and deploy appropriate reactions.
Working directly along-side other kids requires social skills due to constant interaction. It allows for children to read body language, take verbal ques from their instructors as well as spar and train with peers in a fun and interactive way.
2. Fosters Cooperation
As with any competitive sport there are judges and referees to balance fairness and reward a winner. Every athlete must comply and cooperate with the decisions of ref’s and judges in a sportsmanship way.
Rules and regulations are put into place for safety and the wellbeing of all individuals participating in competition which is why cooperation of every athlete involved is extremely important.
Cooperation shows respect for the sport, the other competitors, as well as everyone who is involved, including themselves.
3. Develops Emotional Control
Winning and losing can come with extreme emotions. Some may include over-excitement and others of anger or sadness.
Competition between two athletes will result in one victory, ultimately meaning one opponent will not be victorious. Either way, it’s critical for young children to win or lose anything in life gracefully.
Losing a match to a better skilled opponent may not be easy to accept, but losing or winning in the most sportsmanship behavior is an extremely important skill to learn and teach as this emotional control will be utilized in every aspect of life.
Self-composure, especially in the world of mixed martial arts is embedded within the teachings and in every class. The ability to control internal emotions of anger or extreme excitement is a tool that will extend beyond the mats and carry on into children’s every-day life in school, other extracurricular activities and even at home.
4. Improves Self-Esteem
We know winning can build a strong self-worth, but you’re thinking, how can losing through competition build self-esteem?
Losing can be dissected into pieces in which the child can improve on. Maybe it’s a specific skill or technique or perhaps it was not listening to their coach which costed them the win. After reviewing the match, he or she knows that a specific skill needs to be refined which can be placed on their goal chart in order to perfect.
Turning potential negatives into a positive will encourage children to strive toward that outlined new goal and work harder to achieve greatness. This will ultimately improve self-esteem as self-growth will flourish from hard work.
5. Inspires Creativity and Quick Thinking
Through competition, each child is faced with numerous situations in which their skills and specific techniques should be used in order to gain points and win the match. These skills are not systematically or routinely deployed. The child needs to think on their toes and use techniques they have learned in class against an opponent in quick deciding moments.
This creative approach allows the child to select tools from their mental tool belt against a specific move which encourages creativity and quick thinking.
Overall, competition provides children with feedback that can be addressed in the moment as well as after. Behavioral, psychological and social skills can be refined and developed through competitive sports with the help of dedicated teachers, parents and peers.