Bigfork, MT, AUGUST 15, 2017
Bigfork is about to see it’s first ever martial arts school.
Town locals Cody and his wife Mya Bessette are opening up the newest facility of Straight Blast Gym, which specializes in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for kids and adults.
For now, SBG Bigfork will only offer kids martial arts, but that is a major development for a town with limited options for after school programs for youth.
Cody and Mya are hoping this new martial arts school will make it easier for families who are already stretched to their limit commuting to Kalispell to keep their kids in sports and other extracurricular activities. Those who are unable to make the drive due to work schedules miss out on valuable opportunities for their kids.
The Bessettes would know those challenges facing Bigfork families. With two children of their own, Nevi (8) and Lex (6), Cody and Mya have spent a lot of time driving them into Kalispell to participate in SBG Montana’s Growing Gorillas program.
They decided to start SBG Bigfork after witnessing the profound growth that their children experienced in Kalispell’s Growing Gorillas program.
Cody discovered BJJ over three years ago, and it was a life-changing event for him. He joined SBG Montana, where he trained with Head Coach Travis Davison. He has since received a belt promotion, medaled in national tournaments, and received his coaching certification through SBG’s Coaches Course. Having personally experienced the transformative powers of BJJ, Cody was eager to get his children involved as well.
As a Montana native raised in the Flathead Valley, Cody wanted to pay it forward and extend those life-altering benefits to the Bigfork community.
Growing Gorillas is unique in that it is more than a martial arts program. Designed by Davison and his wife Kisa, the program’s primary objective is teaching children life skills that will help them be successful at school, in the home, and in relationships.
The curriculum combines drilling and play-based instruction to build motor skills and physical awareness. Students also complete monthly homework assignments to skills like courage, respect, perseverance, and kindness, which help them build strong relationships.