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Dragon Fire BJJ hosts tournament for young members

Dragon Fire BJJ
Posted at 7:09 PM, Feb 24, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-24 21:09:59-05

GREAT FALLS — Children ages three to 14 got to take part in the Dragon Fire Brazilian Jiu Jitsu In-House Tournament, where they got to show off the skills they've learned on the mat. Running the event was Preston Bludworth, the owner and head coach of Dragon Fire BJJ, who has been teaching in Great Falls since 2011.

“Every year we do an in-house tournament where we let our kids from our classes sign up and we have them all kind of compete against each other,” Bludworth said, “Just to give them a taste of competition and build a little sportsmanship and camaraderie and just kind of see what it's all about.”

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu emphasizes leverage over striking. Usually when two people fight, the bigger and stronger person will win. Jiu Jitsu is about taking away the leverage and distance between opponents, and using all of your strength on one isolated part of the opponent’s body.

“Ju Jitsu is amazing. The fact that it's like you very quickly begin to realize that it impacts every aspect of your life outside of Ju Jitsu,” John Harris, Administrative Assistant and Assistant Coach at Dragon Fire BJJ said, “The whole thing about Jiu Jitsu is we get put into really uncomfortable, difficult situations and it's like a puzzle. We have to start to think outside of the box of how we're going to get out of this situation and how we can work and navigate through it.”

Tournaments and sports like this are not only beneficial in teaching children self-defense. A program like this helps them learn the importance of sportsmanship and picking yourself up even after you get knocked down.

“You know, our big focus is to make these guys better people,” Bludworth said, “You know, we understand that jujitsu is great, and being able to protect yourself is really important. But you're going to be out in the world just trying to be a good person and, you know, if you can really help someone and help them be better, that's what we really want to pass on to these guys.”

Even if you know nothing about Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Dragon Fire BJJ thinks it is something everyone can enjoy and benefit from.

“I would say the hardest bell to get in jiu jitsu is the first one just going from the couch to stepping in to here,” Bludworth said, “Because it can be intimidating when you don't know what you're walking into. But we're very family oriented and we're very community driven, and we want to make sure everybody has a place here, old, new, it doesn't matter your experience, you can come and try it and you'll be amazed at what you're going to find here.”

Dragon Fire BJJ is dedicated to not only making better fighters, but better people, no matter their age or experience.

“I think it's a great mindset to just start to apply and work through things to better your mental health and your physical health as well,” Harris said.

If you are interested in joining Dragon Fire BJJ, they offer three complementary classes for children 12 and under, or one complementary class for adults to help find out if they want to pursue Jiu Jitsu without heavy commitment.

 Dragon Fire BJJ is located in the Holiday Village Mall at 1200 10th Ave S, Great Falls, MT.

You can follow Dragon Fire on Instagram @DragonfireBJJ, Facebook here, or go to their website here.