Jiu-Jitsu for kids with developmental differences

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WHAT WE DO

Bel Air Learning Center is a Jiu-Jitsu program for kids who aren’t yet ready or simply need a little bit more support to join a regular martial art program. Our small group classes accommodate our student’s interests, strengths and challenges—all in a safe, fun and collaborative environment.


OUR MISSION

“To prepare kids with developmental differences to transition to a traditional Jiu-Jitsu program by connecting to their world, inspiring them to move, play and learn with others.“


POSITIVE ENVIRONMENT

Create a welcoming environment where each child’s individuality is recognized and affirmed.

ROLE MODELS

Serve as role models, exhibiting behaviors that children will want to emulate.

SKILLS

Provide the type of training that will foster independence as well as cooperation with others.

WHO IS IT FOR

Bel Air classes are designed for children who are continually distracted, withdrawn, defiant or prone to emotional outbursts. These traits exist to some extent in all children but when expressed continuously to a high degree, they create a barrier to learning. At Bel Air we do not focus on these visible challenges but rather on the root causes. Understanding each child’s profile is key to developing an effective strategy.


VISIBLE CHALLENGES


DISTRACTED

Child is easily distracted by the environment, especially sounds. Hyperactivity and compulsive actions also hinder focus.

WITHDRAWN

Having no interest in an assigned activity and might perform repetitive motions or actions.

DEFIANT

Frequently argues and ignores requests. Can lead to hurtful words and annoying behavior.

EMOTIONAL OUTBURSTS

Meltdowns or tantrums that can lead to aggressive behavior.

COMMON ROOT CAUSES


SENSORY

Child is hypersensitive or unresponsive to things in the environment. Normal sounds or a light touch can be overwhelming.

ANXIETY

Feeling distress, nervousness or fear in everyday situations

EMOTIONAL SELF-CONTROL

Inability to regulate emotions and is often stubborn

WEAK MOTOR SKILLS

Difficulty with balance, core stability, coordination, flexibility and strength.


STUDENT’S JOURNEY AT BEL AIR

Students start their Jiu-Jitsu journey with a 1-on-1 assessment class. If the prerequisites are met, they join the recommended class (Beginner, Elementary, Intermediate or Advanced) and then work towards transitioning to the regular jiu-jitsu program at our partner school within the same location.

FIRST CLASS 1-on-1 ASSESSMENT
An informal assessment will be made to determine a child’s readiness for Jiu-Jitsu as well as his degree of interest.



ONE-ON-ONE INSTRUCTION

BEGINNER – PHASE 1

1-on-1 sessions with an instructor helps the student with high support needs to become familiar with Jiu-Jitsu.



PARTNERING

ELEMENTARY – PHASE 2

Small group class up 4 students with moderate support needs.



SMALL GROUP CLASS

INTERMEDIATE – PHASE 3

The student joins a class up to 6 kids with some support needs.


PARTIAL TRANSITION

ADVANCED – PHASE 4

Group Class for students with few support needs and close to transitioning to partner academy.


FULL TRANSITION
Student graduates from the Bel Air program and joins the regular program at a partner school.

BENEFITS

Jiu-Jitsu can seem like a game to kids as they’re on the floor sparring or “live rolling.” The many benefits of Jiu-Jitsu include:




FITNESS

Jiu-Jitsu builds strength and promotes core stability and agility




FOCUS

By being engaged in a highly technical activity, students are
forced to pay close attention in order to execute the necessary steps




SOCIAL SKILLS

Kids interact with each other as they join in a fun activity




CONFIDENCE

As kids meet the physical and mental challenges of Jiu-
Jitsu, their confidence grows along with their abilities


WHAT OUR PARENTS SAY

This program has been developed in close collaboration with parents.



LEA

“Using the martial arts as tools, kids are being taught discipline, respect, dedication and love. The instructors are great. They never give up. They teach patience, dedication and endurance by living them. I am very fortunate to have known Alex Truong who have been training my son beyond his call of duty.“

ARGELIA

“My son has been practicing jiu jitsu for a couple of months now and I am truly impressed of his progress. For those parents with special needs kids I would truly recommend this place it is beyond awesome and the staff and their dedication it’s impressive.“

ROCHELLE

“If your child has special needs, and you are interested in finding an extracurricular activity that will be beneficial AND be able to accommodate his/her needs, look no further. I feel so fortunate that a place like Bel-Air Learning Center exists. My older son has been taking classes there for the past few months, and he is engaged, happy, and learning at a pace that works for him. Alex, the owner and lead instructor, really takes the time to get to know your child. He is a nurturing, flexible yet firm instructor. I highly recommend Bel Air Learning Center, and feel that Alex and his staff are dedicated and well trained.“

ELIZABETH

“I recommend Bel Air Learning Center – Jiu-Jitsu for so many reasons! Alex Truong is a great instructor and I admire his patience and ability to teach special needs children. My son has learned so much since he joined. Jiu-Jitsu classes have helped him during his Physical Therapy sessions. He’s now able to accomplish more tasks and keep his stamina up. Also, a big thank you to Eduardo for always keeping him moving and helping him finish what he started.“

WHAT SETS US APART


Only program of its kind

We’re the only martial arts program in Chicago designed specifically for youth with special needs.

Attuned to kids with special needs

Our coaches are creative, experienced and passionate about helping kids with special needs.

Alliances

We match our students with neurotypical students from our partner academies who volunteer to help out.

Small class size

We offer one-on-one training as well as small group classes. Students receive the individual attention they need to learn and progress at their own pace.

Collaborative

We work with parents, schools and caregivers to ensure that our training is aligned with each child’s goals.

Pay-as-you-go

Students take one class at a time, with no contract or long-term commitment required.