It’s been almost a year since my last entry, I took a little turn for the worse emotionally back then and needed to take a break from nearly everything that wasn’t school or training. After several months of study, work, train, sleep and repeat, it’s gotten better. A lot has happened in the time since I last wrote, I aced my exams, I picked up extra work around the gym, I now help teach the wee ninjas class at our club. Between 18 and 30 kids aged 5 to 12, training has been better that ever and in the same time I have also achieved my blue belt and a few stripes to go with it. It was all going so well and I’ve been so busy, I forgot to write about it, but I figured I have a few days free, let’s see if we can get this going again.
Our wee ninjas class has been going for a few months now, it all started because 1 little 5 year old boy wanted to have some fighters come to his birthday party. Our coach and a few of our younger guys went along and did some flashy tricks for the kids and a bit of parkour, you know the real impressive stuff, the kids loved it. After the show one of the kids parents asked if we would be open to starting a kid’s class, the other parents agreed it was a good idea and over the next few weeks we had 12 kids signed up.
As it stands now we are up to 28 to 30 students on a good day, each one a different and unique personality It was tricky at first, I had absolutely no experience working with children, so I was simply in an over watch role. Watch the kids and make sure they don’t break each other so we can send the home in 1 piece. Easy, actually very easy, there is just something about grappling that kids love, jumping all over each other with absolutely no technique involved was the height of hilarity to them, so when we taught them simple yet nifty tricks to hold each other down, or some simple sweeps, they were all over that, they couldn’t get enough. We have 1 kid, he’s only 6, but he is just a master at the single leg, he even gets us adults with it.
We also have a whole team of girls in our kid’s class, quiet and shy girls, boisterous and loud, girly girls and tomboys, the team I’ve always wanted to be a part of. Sure I’m still not technically a part of this team, but these girls are future champs, every one. We have a tiny little 5 year old girl, she’s so sweet off the mats, but as soon as it’s her turn in the middle her entire demeanour changes and she just goes into beast mode, I don’t think I’ve seen her lose the entire time I’ve been there. Another who was shy and quite, crying her first couple of classes, but how she’s blossomed. She’s such a chatterbox at times, always telling us how her day was and when it comes to the drills, though she still stumbles, she never gives up and her technique is getting better and better each time.
We brought them to a competition back in April, after only having the class for 6 months. It was just a trial run to see how far they’d come in such a short time. 11 children competed and though we didn’t do exceptionally well I am very proud of each and every one that took part. They showed great heart and though there were a few tears, it was a great day and a real learning experience for which they couldn’t be happier. Out of the 11 we brought home 2 silver medals and 9 bronze.
Just recently we had their first grading, a whole day set aside to test our wee ninjas and to let them show off all they’d learned to their parents and coaches. I was so impressed with each and every one of them, they were on their best behaviour all day and attempted everything to the best of their ability, each and every one deserved their promotion, and I hope it lights a little fire in them to continue to progress in BJJ.
This past year has been amazing, I myself got my blue belt back in march, which was such a shock I couldn’t believe it. As a club, we were all expecting this 1 guy to get his for sure, he’s progressed so much we were rooting for him so hard and when his name was called the cheer that went up was deafening, he really deserved it after all his hard work, then my name was called. All I could think was no, that’s not me. A few hands shoved me and up I went to receive my blue belt, I don’t really remember the walk or having it tied on, but the next thing I knew I was sitting back down with a fresh blue belt around my waist getting hugs and handshakes from everyone.
I guess that means I should change my profile pic.
I feel like this was a big rant and babble, I have a few more things to talk about that happened this past year but I’ll leave them for another post and see how things go.