Yet another mother came to me the other night very pleased saying "we know that he does the front break falls correctly now".
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Apparently one of my youngest students had decided that he would jump from the jungle frame. As do most, if not all 5 years old's he thought he was superman or whatever superhero is now popular. As he was falling according to him thought better of it did a front breakfall.
From his description, he was very calculated about it as we had been practising this particular break fall for several weeks beforehand and he was not getting it right. He spent a great deal of time, for a 5yo, outlining every detail of how he set himself up to fall as he was heading for the ground.
I am always amazed at how quickly the mind thinks when it in danger.
Interesting this child has had the front breakfall correct ever since.
The whole thing must have been pretty impressive because the parents of this child have four boys and not only did the mother come to me to tell me about it but the father came to tell me about the incident the very next week.
Children of This Age Are Very Pliable
I suppose it could be said that children of this age are very pliable and may not have hurt himself anyway with such a fall. It probably could also be said, as I have often said that children tend to fall correctly as infants and they unlearn it as they get older. I think they unlearn it because we as an adult have such an adverse reaction to them falling they get frightened off it; but as I watched my own boys grow up and because I know how to fall I avoided teaching my boys to fall incorrectly. So much so that when they came to start Judo my Sensei was very impressed and asked if I had been teaching them how to fall. I said no I just had not taught them how not to fall.
Taking all this into account did better pliability and his youth have more to do with his good falling than his breakfall technique. I have no doubt that it did play a part but remember he did not have this break fall correct before he took this other fall and he thought it through as he was falling. It seems to me that his front breakfall had a lot to do with his being unharmed when he hit the ground.You can see more stories about a breakfall saving lives here