I have done voluntary work now for a number of years as a volunteer instructor at a Judo and Jitsu club in the town near where I live in Lewes. Its a community club working out of an old school building called the Lewes new school. Its great helping kids, working with parents and supporting the community. It gives an added dimension to work life and enhances skills and values in the work place
Although I am tall and have always been strong, as a child I was bullied at school, and later in life I seemed to attract angry people. If I was in a pub and a fight kicked off then the first blow always seemed to be aimed my way. The aggressive person would sit next to me on the night bus. That is until one day I was in the local leisure centre having a swim and I saw a new class starting in traditional JuJitsu. So I went along, I also started an Aikido class as well. I did well. The interesting thing was though I have only once used self defence practically, it changed my life. I suspect I started to hold myself differently, give off a different vibe, but things would kick off around me and it was like I was in a calm centre while a storm raged around me. No one ever picked on me any more, threw a punch my way or looked at me askance. It changed my life, ‘the code’ the techniques, the friends I made, all enhanced the experience. Eventually I moved away from the area, stopped doing martial arts but the sense never left me and I picked it up some 30 years later helping kids. Helping them get the confidence, build respect for themselves, make friends, understand courtesy, honesty and honour are things worth offering.
The club I work with is a small community club, no one is paid, everyone wants to ensure we have high standards, then insurances, the checks, the backing of the right organisations.
Part of a childs education
It is not a coincidence that martial arts are fast becoming seen by many parents and carers as part of a childs education. Clearly, it is an activity which can bring so many positive things to a child’s life and the life of children in general creating a space that makes for better mental as well as physical health. If their parents do it as well then we have a circle of well being.
Judo and Ju-Jitsu are world-wide known martial arts disciplines and sports. For anyone making the choice of Judo for themselves or their child or perhaps both, Its important to understand it involves strength, tactics, endurance and strength of will
Starting at an early age a martial art can be very useful for the development of children, whether it considers their body or their psyche. The voluntary work of so many instructors, to get active self confident kids is an important contributor to our communities.
Yes it will help you get fit and lose body weight if you are practicing regularly and for many this also has a knock on effect of helping self esteem and alleviating depression. Ok, but we are talking about something here that involves the martialling of a violent nature. But as we learn to defend ourselves we also do this in a friendly environment. Children are exposed to each other, sharing experiences relying on each other while training. Also, if one child shows violence to another, the other will not respond in the way expected and the violent child is disciplined, making children realize that the harm to others may be punishable and that violence, as such should be avoided. But this is a rarity as the structure and formality of the teaching arena (Dojo) teaches respect and courtesy as a must.
This formality, courtesy and routine gives children and in fact gives many martial artists something they can organise their lives around, teaching them to be responsible for their actions and their arrangements as they move through life.
Then in Judo and Jitsu comes the grading and belt system. The coloured belts stand for different levels achieved by those training this discipline. This characteristic gives, especially for children a positive motivation and boosts their competitive spirit and skills while the courtesy and respect (bowing and formality) constantly puts the accent on fair play.
For many parents Judo and Jitsu’s concentration on self defence helps their children to be able to stand up against bullies which might have tortured them daily before. As an instructor, along with others offering voluntary work, the only payment is that the children enjoy and build confidence. This ability reduces the number of bullies and aggressive children in general since they are, most of the time fed on the fear of other children. That fear being gone and the child having enough self-esteem to stand up to the bully is another benefit our voluntary work can may bring to a child’s life.
The benefits of Judo and its cousin Ju-Jitsu are numerous and last long into life, the benefits you get you wish to pass on to others. It amazing to think that hardly any martial arts were fully known or understood outside Japan 75 years ago, yet now Judo as an example is a worldwide and Olympic sport and pass time.
If you are interested in one of our Tuesday night sessions in Lewes, East Sussex get in touch right here
voluntary work is an important part of our community and our work life, whether you are a solicitor, a nurse, a managing director or a builder, it does not matter we all have something to offer. Charities need trustees, community centres need volunteers, care homes need drivers, litter needs picking, land needs clearing. Its all voluntary work.