Thinking of enrolling your child into a Kids Jiujitsu school in Toronto, or any kids Martial Arts program?

Great! It is no secret that martial arts has so many amazing benefits to kids. Combat sports like Jiu-jitsu, kickboxing, muay thai, or hapkido are also gaining mainstream popularity.

So how do you decide which dojo has the best kids jiu-jitsu Toronto lessons. How do you know which studio is the best fit for your little ninja to be?

Or, is this one system of martial art better than the others for kids. Do you base it on the rank, reputation, or accolades of the instructor?

Truth is, there are more important factors to consider. While questions like these are valid, they may not necessarily help in finding a program that would be the best fit for your child.

Here are 4 important things we recommend looking for in any Toronto kids jiu-jitsu, kickboxing, or children’s martial arts program in Toronto.

1. What is the kids Jiu-jitsu Class Environment Like?

Where we are usually plays a big role to our focus and energy level. A kids jiu-jitsu Toronto class is no different.

Think about other kids activities in Toronto like dance classes, gymnastics, or team sports. What are the common elements to look for in those environments?

With training space, a couple of things that you want to watch for are its cleanliness, neatness, and “floor management”.

Are things well organized? does the place looks inviting enough that you would want to stay and exercise?

When we say environment, we do not just mean the physical location, but also by the people in it. Having friendly classmates to interact with completes the experience. This way, your child will feel welcomed and comfortable.

2. Are the Jiu-jitsu Lessons Age-Appropriate?

Every child is different, but generally, kids hit certain developmental milestones at specific ages.

The motor skills and emotional maturity of a 6 or 7 year old are miles apart from a 9 year old, let alone a 12 year old.

So, it is important to find an age-appropriate program that is tailored to your child’s stage of development. Evoke Martial Arts, for example, curated a Lil’ Dragon classes that caters specifically to children ages 4 to 5 and another for 6 to 7 years old. We also have a separate class for ages 8 to 12, and a martial arts class that is exclusively for teenagers.

This ensures activities, skills, and vocabulary of instruction is appropriate for their age, and so they can have fun with peers their age and be appropriately challenged.

3. Who are Instructors teaching the kids classes?

The instructors teaching a kids jiu-jitsu Toronto or any kids martial arts classes are CRUCIAL!

They are the people that your child will be looking up to – not just when it comes to their martial arts training but also as adult mentors.

That means, you want the instructors to not only be skilled, but also embody life-skills values you believe to be important.

A good kids jiu-jitsu instructor should be able to build connection with your child, and demonstrate a morals you can trust. Remember, instructors will provide guidance and at the same time be individuals your child will want to emulate.

Your child should also be comfortable, feel safe, and able to learn without feeling like their learning. This way they will enjoy themselves and be able to incorporate the lessons into their everyday lives.

4. Does It Have A good Kids Class Structure?

Repeat it again: Structure! Is! Important!

How are the classes run? Are they using a structured lesson plan(s)? Is there a here-to-there process in what they are learning? What type of visible or quantifiable results can you expect from enrolling in the program.

The type of martial arts style or discipline being taught (kids jiu-jitsu, youth kickboxing, teen mma, etc.) will only have relevance when all these considerations have been met.

You want your child to learn martial arts, but whichever studio you choose to go with should have a proven structure.

There is so much to learn in martial arts. And some martial arts discipline, like kids jiu-jitsu Toronto, have strict requirements in other to progress.

Contrary to to popular perception, this is the norm for a good kids martial arts program. This is achieved with structure.

In our kids programs at Evoke, for example, we use a different rank structure for the different age groups. Our 6 and 7 year olds are only learning a fraction of the kids curriculum, and the kids (8 to 12) learn a fraction of the teen program.

That way every warm-up drill, technique, or skill is only related to what they need to know for that level. Using well-structured lesson plans also ensures there is consistency with disguised repetition, so they are learning without getting bored.

This allows them to practice in a way that sets them up for success and ensures they only level up when ready.

Bonus Consideration: Social Proof.

Most kids jiu-jitsu Toronto programs or martial arts schools in general will have some type of trial offer.

Starting with a trial allows you to discern if the program will be a good fit for your child before committing to a membership. During this period you can also interact with other parents there to see what their experience has been in said program.

A kids jiu-jitsu Toronto school with mostly beginners may suggest the program is new or kids aren’t staying. A program with a very small number of kids could also suggest the same even if many of the kids are highly skilled. The balance is somewhere in the middle.

Social media is also a great way to observe what type of digital footprint exists for the program. Check out their posts, comments, and take a pulse on how their community  feels about them.

And lastly… go with your gut. What is the vibe you are looking for in a kids martial arts program?

We invite you to try our kids programs here at Evoke. We might just be the perfect fit for your child.

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Training at Evoke has been a truly wonderful experience. As an adult engaging in martial arts for the first time, the environment has been ideal. All of the instructors have been motivating, knowledgeable, and supportive. The classes offer a great workout and a chance to feel a little bit badass. I look forward to continuing the journey!

Caitlin H.| Hapkido member