Do you have a child who desperately needs to burn some energy, but doesn’t have any interest in your typical, run of the mill, organized sports? I found myself in this situation this past spring. My older boys (eight and 10-years-old) were looking for some extra curricular activity to be a part of, but they had no interest in the spring sports offered in our area. As I was scouring the internet for some kind of organization for them to join, I was told about Agoge Combatives. It’s a gym in Chattanooga that offers youth combatives classes, youth Krav Maga, and youth jiu-jitsu. They offer adult classes as well, so it can be a family affair if you wish. My boys love any form of rough-housing and wrestling, so we signed up for a week trial and went to class.
They immediately fell in love with the combatives class, and we’ve been going twice a week ever since. Right now they are both doing the Krav Maga class, but they plan on adding jiu-jitsu into the mix in the future. The class runs for an hour, and with the great scheduling options, we can hit up morning classes or evening classes several days a week. Since our membership is paid monthly, they can attend as many classes as they want each month.
Not only have the boys learned some fabulous self-defense techniques through this class, but they’ve also grown tremendously in their self-confidence.
My oldest son is a bit shy and reserved, but he’s like a different kid in class. He leads exercises when asked, hits and kicks his muay thai bag with a force that would make me cry, and has made several new friends. My middle son is a little spitfire and loves hitting things as hard as he can. He goes 110% the entire hour, and he’s exhausted when it’s over. They went into this knowing nothing about Krav Maga, and after a couple of months, they’ve become really good at it. Their instructor is great, and thanks to him, they now know the correct techniques and what to do if they come across a bully or predator. He’s encouraged them so much along the way, and that’s been great for their self-esteem.
This gym and these classes aren’t limited to just boys; they have several girls in their class as well. There are even classes that my five-year-old can take, so I’m sure he’ll be joining in sooner rather than later. The gym is always spotless and there’s plenty of seating for parents and spectators. It’s located on the Georgia side of the Tennessee line in East Ridge, so there’s easy access coming from all directions. If your child decides to do jiu-jitsu, there’s no fee for belt testing. They sell any supplies you could need there as well. Since there’s a week free trial, you have nothing to lose by trying it out.