How Martial Arts Can Dramatically Transform A Kid’s Life Forever


I just want to tell you about how martial arts can really transform a kid. It can really make a huge impact on their life for the better.

The Martial Arts Transformation

And I’ve seen that time and time again. A kid will come into the school and really just kind of be not very athletic, introverted, backwards, maybe even a little nerdy and then over time that just changes. So they train in Jiu-jitsu.

And now they’ve got a black belt and they’ve got some muscle on them and they walk with confidence and they kind of have this commanding presence about them now.

It’s totally different. It really does change their social life. And I’ve seen it.

I know a lot of parents say “Why don’t we see that?”. Well, you see your child as he is now. But I see what he can be, you see. I’ve seen it time and time again – this sort of a positive transformation that happens over time. I’ve been doing this for 30 years, so I’ve seen it.

From Skinny And Bullied Teen To Golden Gloves Champion

I remember one time this kid came in to me and he was being bullied at school. He was being beaten up. He got beaten up by two boys and the grandfather had enough, brought him into me to learn some martial arts. Really a skinny kid. And I’ve got to tell you – Physically speaking, he wasn’t very good. He was actually really bad. He had no athletic ability whatsoever. He didn’t have any good balance.

He was probably one of the worst students I ever had in terms of his physical abilities that he brought to the table when he first came into the school. Pretty poor.

However, the kid had dedication and he kept coming and kept coming and kept coming. He was doing kickboxing and got really good. He got super good, especially good with his hands – strong jab, could move, this skinny high school kid, 15 years old, can box now!

As a matter of fact, he went and entered the state Golden Gloves tournament and WON! That kid took first place! So in a matter of like, say three years or so, he came into the school, skinny little kid, awkward, no athleticism whatsoever, and he transformed himself into this muscular Golden Gloves champion.

And it was one of my proudest moments as a martial arts teacher when he brought to me this picture of when he won Golden Gloves. There he is in the ring, the referees raising his hand, his name was Ben. The referees raising Ben’s hand and, you know, both opponents were obviously very sweaty. Ben’s got a big black eye, right? But he won. And the referee is raising his hand. And man, there is Ben! Because I saw Ben when he came in the school, skinny awkward kid. And there’s Ben now – Golden Gloves champion.

Huge huge impact on this kid’s life, forever right? I mean, it TRANSFORMED his life. Imagine what that does for him when he grows up. He’s not the skinny little kid anymore.

I’ve seen it again too.

“I’m Really Worried About Him, He Just Likes To Play Video Games”

I had another kid that had come to me and kind of the same thing – awkward kid, kind of long hair, kind of those like heavy metal rock shirts on. And his mom told me “I’m really worried about him. He doesn’t like school. He doesn’t like athletics. He is the one doing anything. He just wants to sit and play video games.”

This was a tall skinny kid, probably 6″4 and like 150 pounds – super skinny kid. So, he came into the school. Now he wanted to do Jiu-jitsu.

This Kid Was A Natural At Jiu Jitsu

And I’ve got to tell you – this kid was a natural jiu-jitsu!! He never did anything else before. He wasn’t in academics and he wasn’t into sports. But he had this tall skinny build and just took to jiu-jitsu and he became very very good at jiu-jitsu. He started going to tournaments and racking up medals. He started tapping out higher ranked people.

This kid went from a skinny little long-haired kid in his face, who kind of walked in with his back hunched over, and not very confident, again, to a very very skilled guy and jiu-jitsu and it really transformed his life.

Imagine: What This Does For A Kid’s Confidence Over Time

So you got to imagine what this kind of thing would do for a kid’s confidence over time. It’s just HUGE. I can’t tell you how much this can impact a kid’s life way into the future when they become an adult. I’ve seen it. I’ve seen kids go through this training. It really does alter their life for the better.

And that’s why all of the stuff is really very important.

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Father of eight, Dr. Scott Sullivan is the chief instructor at Bam Bam Martial Arts in Houston, TX. He holds a doctorate in philosophy from the University of St. Thomas and is a seasoned martial arts instructor with over 30 years of experience. A firm believer that martial arts really does help people become more fit, safe, and happy, he remains vigilant about helping people improve their lives through martial arts.