MMA for Kids

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rycanto
7/23/08 7:30:44PM
So I have seen a few television pieces on whether kids should be doing MMA. It's kind an easy topic to attack for outsiders that don't understand the sport.

I watched these clips: Espn's "Outside the Lines" looks at MMA for kids

It's kind frustrating to watch because of ignorance which still remains about the sport. Especially with the guy who debates in the 2nd clip.

Personally, I am kinda torn about this stuff. If I have kids, I think BJJ would be great for them to do but I just think MMA is too rough on a kids body. But I think you can still train kids in MMA without really hurting them.

What do you guys think?
postman
7/23/08 8:27:14PM
We teach kids at my gym, actually there are more kids that come regularly then adults. We also have a all girls class ages 7 to 12. They always have headgear, elbow pads, mouth gaurd, shin pads, cups, and gloves. If you forget your gear you don't get to train simple as that.

I don't get why if a kid were to train in BJJ, TKD, maybe take some boxing lessons, and be on the school wrestling team, we would have no problem but put it all under one roof and call it MMA and there is a problem. I didn't watch the videos, but I have seen videos of kids actually fighting with no gear on, I don't agree with that but for a kid to train and maybe take a smoker fight in full protective gear whats the harm?
DPimm
7/24/08 3:06:10PM
My concern about this is the relatvely unstructured nature of MMA in class form as apposed to traditional martial arts classes.

I think the formality, and respect and structure of traditional martial arts classes are good for kids.

As for 8 year olds going ground and pound on each other. NOPE

If you were to eliminate ALL strikes to a downed opponent I would consider it.
AchillesHeel
7/24/08 3:52:46PM
One thing they didn't touch on in that ESPN thing is the difference between studying a martial art and actually competing. Seeing kids in full-contact, competitive MMA tournaments with only the standard protective gear that an adult would wear (e.g. 4oz gloves) made me wince a little.
Buddharox
7/24/08 3:54:43PM
Training is fine, but I'm not sure about actually fighting. I've only seen a couple kid mma competitions, and they just beat the shit out of each other. Too weak to get the KO, so they just pound away with the fury of a kid gone apeshit. Looks way more brutal than adult mma.
papercut
7/24/08 4:30:09PM
I actually caught the interview today. and the basketball coach that was debating with shamrock didn't make too much sense with his argument. I have done TKD for 8 years. (started when I was 8) and his thing about injuries in MMA isn't entirely true. I have been doing BJJ and kickboxing for two years and I have to say I was injured more in TKD than either of the other two. I broke my arm twice while in TKD broke toes and fingers. but my training in the other two other than maybe a couple hyperextended muscles and a few bloody noses I have been fine.

I do agree that kids younger than I would say 10 shouldn't do MMA competitions. they can train sure, but I don't agree with the competitions for kids that young. they don't have the best control and they could easily hurt someone. but as far as them training, I see no problem with it as long as they wear all the proper gear. and do only light sparring in class. but thats just my opinion on it.
Rush
7/24/08 5:17:47PM
The main difference between MMA and TMA with respect to learning is that MMA seems to be the focus of people wanting to compete, whereas the TMA spans from casual to competitive.

Another thing is that why would kids need to train MMA? To me it's an artefact of the parents' interest rather than the kids' interest.

I don't like kids under 16 years old having joint locks applied to them. They do not have fully developed skeletons yet and joint locks just increase the risk of injury or development problems.

All in all I don't necessarily have a problem with kids in MMA, but it is quite circumstantial.
AchillesHeel
7/25/08 11:06:42AM

Posted by Rush

Another thing is that why would kids need to train MMA? To me it's an artefact of the parents' interest rather than the kids' interest.


That guy who wanted his son to learn MMA because he'd been bullied as a kid really annoyed me. And then when the reporter asked the son whether his dad would be okay with him deciding to do something else, the kid clearly thought not, and was afraid to say so. But that's not about MMA, it's about parenting...


Posted by Rush

I don't like kids under 16 years old having joint locks applied to them. They do not have fully developed skeletons yet and joint locks just increase the risk of injury or development problems.


Right, that's a question in my mind too. I believe, for example, that Little League coaches who aren't allowed to teach kids under 12 to throw a curveball, or any other pitch that stresses the arm or shoulder in odd ways (professional pitchers get surgery almost routinely now). And there is increasing evidence that sports coaches have to re-learn how to teach girls, in particular. Female soccer players in high school and college, for example, are experiencing an alarming rate of hip injuries. I forget her name, but one of the most promising collegiate players not only had her career wrecked, she may not walk normally the rest of her life.
warglory
7/25/08 12:20:47PM
Kids under 18 should not compete, simple as that. If you want to train in the correct environment with the right protection, I see nothing wrong with that.
Rush
7/25/08 2:39:47PM

Posted by AchillesHeel

That guy who wanted his son to learn MMA because he'd been bullied as a kid really annoyed me. And then when the reporter asked the son whether his dad would be okay with him deciding to do something else, the kid clearly thought not, and was afraid to say so. But that's not about MMA, it's about parenting...



For sure.


Posted by AchillesHeel

Right, that's a question in my mind too. I believe, for example, that Little League coaches who aren't allowed to teach kids under 12 to throw a curveball, or any other pitch that stresses the arm or shoulder in odd ways (professional pitchers get surgery almost routinely now). And there is increasing evidence that sports coaches have to re-learn how to teach girls, in particular. Female soccer players in high school and college, for example, are experiencing an alarming rate of hip injuries. I forget her name, but one of the most promising collegiate players not only had her career wrecked, she may not walk normally the rest of her life.



Well another example we could use is competitive gymnastics. Look at the impact that type of training has on those kids, particularly the girls.
AchillesHeel
7/25/08 3:07:08PM
"The Uneven Playing Field", by Michael Sokolove, The New York Times, 11 May 2008

This article mainly focuses on ACL injuries among high-school age girls, which are roughly five times more prevalent than among boys playing the same sports at the same age. A team of 18 girls playing a typical schedule of soccer games can expect one season-ending ACL injury to a player every year. One team cited in the article had 6 players in varying stages of recovery from ACL injuries, two of whom had had surgery on both knees. The article also notes that concussions are roughly 1.5x more prevalent among teenaged girls than teenaged boys (high school girls playing soccer suffer concussions at the same rate as high school boys playing American football).

One possible reason for the discrepancy is the growth hormones during adolescence, when boys get more testosterone and girls get more estrogen. Of course, prior to adolescence, boys and girls are much more the same. Interestingly, testosterone typically causes a reduction in flexibility as it increases strength, so teenaged girls might actually have an edge over boys in jiu-jitsu.

Things that make you go "ew...": Apparently, an ACL doesn't really tear, so much as it explodes and dissolves into a puddle of worthless goo, no longer connecting your thigh to your lower leg...
murphy_16
7/25/08 5:54:10PM
it was a good watch thanks for posting and i gotta say i disagree with kid MMA i think they should train do grappling tournament and submissions and stuff but no striking before 16 kids just shouldnt take those strikes to the head
Rush
7/25/08 8:45:32PM
I guess some people want to start them really young. Baby play pen??
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murphy_16
7/26/08 12:19:28AM

Posted by Rush

I guess some people want to start them really young. Baby play pen??



haha that looks like my old WWF cage toy except just shaped as an octagon

EDIT: well actually thats a hectagon
The_Ho_Bag
7/26/08 11:03:49AM

Posted by warglory

Kids under 18 should not compete, simple as that. If you want to train in the correct environment with the right protection, I see nothing wrong with that.



i compete and im 17 but i get what you saying, very dangerous

id say for kids MMA they have to wear head gear, no locks below the waist, no wrist locks, elbow, knees to the face or GnP to the face....

Kinda scary seeing 10 year olds who are better then me
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