The Academy Martial Arts and Fitness


Anti Bully Workshop

Bullies look for passive behaviors as they select their victims.  The assertive training at The Academy will reduce bullies from selecting you.  The students get hands on practice.  Here is an example of the assertive verbal skills in action:

To set up a program or to attend the next one at The Academy contact [email protected] or 989-631-5960.

Children Self Protection Program

This class uses scenario based training to devleop assertiveness and self protection skills to effectively protect our children from Bullies. Using simple and effective non violent conflict resolution skills, this class playfully gives children ages 6-12 the tools to stop bullies in their tracks! And the confidence gained from the experience empowers them in all other facets of their lives!

 In a fun and safe environment, this dynamic 1.5 hr. program effectively teaches our children how to skillfully deal with bullies:

§         Avoiding common playground altercations

§         How to handle name calling and teasing

§         Protecting personal “space” and possessions

§         Assessing appropriate defense and how NOT to start a fight

§         Verbal skills to back off a Bully

§         Team strategies to work together to stop Bullying

§         Physical escapes from grabs or pushes

§         Confidence and Assertiveness Training for all walks of life!

Here is a clip on the program.

What: A 1.5 hr Assertiveness and Confidence Training for Kids ages 6-12

Contact: Craig or Laura Sira at 989-631-5960

Class size limited to 20.

10 Safety Tips for Children from FAST Defense

1. Don’t look like an easy victim. Present assertive, self-confident body language and eye contact, not passive, not aggressive behavior.

2. Know your numbers. Memorize important phone numbers, address, and practice how to make phone calls from a payphone.

3. Have a Password, and family strategies for being home alone and answering the phone, and the door.

4. Never go anywhere with a strange adult or child. Also, never go anywhere with anyone you do know without your parent’s permission.

5. Have a strategy for getting lost. Empower your children to practice designating “safe places” like a store clerk or security station whenever you go shopping or to other places.

6. Know your neighborhood and other common routes. Designate safe places to go to in an emergency, (a neighbor’s house, store, etc…).

7. Never accept anything from a stranger. Always trust your guts whenever anything feels funny to you, and be on alert!

8. Fire Proof Your Children. Work out an escape plan and basic fire strategies.

9. Unwanted Touch. No one has the right to touch a child in a way that feels uncomfortable. Empower children to say “No” to an adult or another child in this situation.

10.Teamwork Rocks! There is safety in numbers. Watch out for your friends and each other. Report anything strange that happens, to your parents, a teacher, or principal. NO Secrets!

Anti bully Advice for Parents from The Academy Martial Arts and Fitness

Bullying is an all too common occurrence today.  Bullies like to push their weight around and take advantage of perceived weakness in the people around them.  The good news is we can take steps to reduce the likelihood of being bullied.

Can steps be taken so bullies will not select my child?  Yes there are many steps that can be taken.  Bullies, like all predators, look for easy victims.  This is the number 1 anti bully defense.  If your child carries himself with his head up with confidence, bullies are less likely to select him as a victim. 

How does my child gain confidence?  Practice.  This is why the physical martial art training is so important.  If your child knows how to physically defend themselves then they will have the confidence to use the non-fighting skills.  It does not take much.  Simple training using palms, knees and elbows is all that is needed but it must be practiced.

If my child knows how to fight, wouldn’t they just become a bully themselves?  I have been teaching children self protection since 1986 and my experience shows that a child trained to protect themselves actually reduces bully behavior around them.  They become a positive example to other children.  Martial art skills provide the foundation to use the non fighting skills.

What are these non fighting skills?  At The Academy, children are instructed and practice being aware to their environment.  They learn where to set boundaries and how to enforce the boundaries that they set.  They learn and practice, using verbal skills to de-escalate a situation before it become physical.  This is powerful training and greatly decreases having to fight a bully.

Will the martial arts make my child aggressive?  Not with proper training.  We categorize 3 types of response. 

·         The first response is passive behavior.  This behavior actually increases bully behavior since it is seen as a weakness to his predator mind.  Unfortunately, this is often the behavior schools mistakenly would like the bully victims to behave -  ‘just ignore the bully and he will leave it alone’ or ‘just toughen up and do not let it bother you’.  This type of behavior actually has the opposite effect, hence the major bullying problem in the schools. 

·         On the other extreme is aggressive behavior.  This is not desirable either since it is like pouring gas on a fire.  We do not want potential victims just decking the bullies since it may lead to an escalation of inappropriate behavior.  For example, let’s say the potential victim was aggressive and gave the bully a black eye in front of a group of people for a minor insult.  The bully will likely leave the victim alone at that point in time but revenge will be on his mind.  He will want to save face.  Next time he may try to use a weapon to even the odds.    

·         The third type response is being assertive.  The children learn how to use non verbal and verbal skills to set and enforce boundaries.  Boundaries they are ready and able to defend if the bully continues to advance. 

We show examples of passive, aggressive and assertive response to the children, then they practice it themselves before applying it to different scenarios.  They see for themselves the power of being assertive.

You get to apply the material in simulated scenarios.