3:00 PM – 4:00 PM

@ University of Hawaii – Manoa
Athletic Complex, Studio 2

The Beginner Series will now run concurrently with the 3:00 Sunday class at UH – Manoa.

Does learning karate, kung fu, judo, or any other martial art really help a child to defend him or her self?

It is important to point out that fighting in the street or the playground is completely different to in the dojo, there are no rules, and there are no special suits or protective pads. The environment is different, it may be hot, cold, windy, light, dark, icy or wet outside when a confrontation may take place. Whereas the dojo is usually well lit, clean, warm and accommodating. The fighters will not be evenly matched as in tournaments and the bully will usually be always bigger than the person they are picking on.

From a physical point of view taking part in sparring, and learning to take some degree of punishment will definitely help the child to deal with a certain amount of aggressive behavior. From a psychological point of view, the child will be helped to a certain extent through taking part in the grading process, and the confidence building exercises that takes place within the dojo this should help the child gain more self confidence in themselves. A child who feels fitter and stronger is far more unlikely to be bullied by anyone.

The adrenaline rushing through your body, and the feeling of fear of being hurt by your opponent, are things that most younger martial art students are not taught to cope with. Dealing with full out blows to the head and body is usually discouraged in the Majority of clubs, but can be expected in the street.

The style of fighting in the street is different, grappling, kneeing, head butts, strangleholds, pulling hair are all things that happen in the street but not in the dojo (training area) The rough kid on the block, who is streetwise and has had many confrontations, is more likely to succeed in a real fight.

Who does a bully usually pick on?

  • A smaller child
  • A sensitive child
  • A child from a different cultural background
  • A child who may stutter or have learning difficulties
  • A child who is from a different social class
  • A child who seems to lack self-confidence and esteem.

Through training in a martial art, the child will become fitter, stronger, and will gain more confidence and self-esteem, as long as the instructor is sensitive to the children’s needs. The instructor needs to give positive feedback all of the time to all students, to help them achieve their goals.

Children need to be reminded that they are becoming stronger, fitter, and quicker.

An instructor who belittles, humiliates, shows up or makes fun of the child will have the opposite effect, the child will lose confidence in themselves and will probably give up.

It is easy to upset a sensitive child within the class, and make them lose confidence. Sensitive children require a little more thought from the instructor to help build up their confidence.

For more advice and help regarding bullying go to our contact page.