Choosing a Self Defense for your child! Words from a Singapore National Athlete

Choosing the Right Martial Art and School for your Child!

– Benjamin Ng
Singapore National Athlete and Instructor
While the techniques and values may differ between martial arts, grapplers with a strong base in say, Judo can easily grasp techniques from Wrestling or BJJ. Likewise, strikers who have a good foundation in Karate can easily transition into Boxing, Taekwondo or Muay Thai. It is more important to find a school that suits your and your child’s needs, and where you feel most comfortable.
Max- Judo Superhero
When you have a vague idea of what martial art your child should do, it is time to seek out the right martial art school for your child. This step is perhaps the most important part as it would shape the development of your child in terms of core values and basic athleticism. There are numerous factors you should take account such as location, cost, session availability etc. If you are planning for your child to enroll for a long-term, ensure that the class schedule does not clash with your or the child’s timetable; and then decide if the cost and the location of the school are acceptable to you.
The most important factor in deciding on a martial art school is whether its programmes are accredited. Make sure that the school is affiliated to a national governing body, preferably registered with Sport Singapore. For example, in Singapore, the governing body for Karate is the Singapore Karate-Do Federation (SKF), and for Judo is the Singapore Judo Federation (SJF). Belt promotions and certifications are very likely to be recognized worldwide ensuring that your child can practice anywhere without fear or possible embarrassment.
Different Types of Martial Arts and a history of Jagsport!
Next, find out what programmes the school offers based on age, experience, and other factors. Many martial arts have a competitive element to it, and if you want your child to compete in the eventually, choose a school with a strong competitive and safety track record. Schools will usually advertise their accomplishments, and it should be a good gauge of how capable the school is to provide your child with the necessary training to excel.

Visit the facility, speak to the instructors and other parents, and observe how the classes are conducted. Most martial art schools offer free trial sessions, use these to assist you in making an informed decision. If they have an online presence, look for online reviews.

Remember, it is more important for your child to enjoy the session, as it largely determines whether your child will stick with the martial art in the long term. Don’t make a long-term commitment until you are absolutely sure your child is enjoying training.

If you are still uncertain about your choice, I recommend you consider Judo with Jagsport. Our fully air-conditioned facility with layered regulation impact mats runs classes throughout the week for children and adults. Home to some of the top national athletes, our excellent student to trainer ratio, ensures excellent attention to details, to bring out the best of your child, while maintaining the highest standards of safety.

Benjamin Ng
Singapore National Athlete and Instructor