The following call to be a GUARDIAN and Holiday Safety Tips are courtesy of Mr. Dave Young, the founder of the U.S. Fighting Systems Program. He has spent the past 25 years teaching military, police and corrections officers how to stay safe and defend themselves. For more information, sign up for his free safety tips here: Your Family Defense
Dave Young’s End of Year and Holiday Safety Tips
- Increase your level of AWARENESS.
- On your morning run or ride to work through the neighborhood, take “brain pictures” of cars parked in the street that may not belong to a neighbor.
- Carefully screen friendly knocks at the door – it may not be the person you think behind it.
- Watch hands as people approach you, they may not have something good inside their pockets.
- When shopping, be conscious of people spending more time watching you than the items they came to buy.
- Pay attention as you walk into stores – make sure people from the outside don’t follow you in.
- Keep your personal belongings close and your family members even closer.
- Discuss your “Family Action Plan.” Know what will family members do and where will they go in case of an emergency.
- Before you sit down at a restaurant, coffee shop, concert, theater or any other place, make sure you identify your escape routes, positions of cover possible, and weapons of availability if needed.
- Do not count on the call for help to be your safety plan!
As Martial Artists we try our best to make good food choices. What we eat is part of our overall self defense!
This Tuesday we are helping to celebrate National Healthy Lunch Day in support of National Diabetes Awareness Month.
According to The American Diabetes Association:
Nearly 30 million children and adults in the United States have diabetes.
Another 86 million Americans have pre-diabetes and are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
The American Diabetes Association estimates that the total national cost of diagnosed diabetes in the United States is $245 billion.
American Diabetes Month takes place each November and is a time to come together as a community to Stop Diabetes®!
May is National Physical Fitness Month!
As martial artists one of our goals is to work on maintaining a healthy lifestyle. That includes exercise both in and outside of class.
Every week in May we will be issuing a new challenge! All students, parents and siblings are encouraged to participate!
Week One (May 3-9): SIT UPS! Do 100 sit ups (vary them) daily. It doesn’t have to be all at once. If you need to, spread them out through the day.
Week Two (May 10-16): LUNGES! Do 100 lunges every day! They can be varied (stationary, walking forward, jumping) and spread throughout your day. Keep up the good work!
Week Three (May 17-23) CARDIO! Add an extra 10 minutes of cardio to your daily routine. It’s your choice – running, jump rope, fast feet, etc.
Week Four (May 24-31) PUSH UPS! Do 100 push ups every day. Again, it’s okay to do them a few at a time. Let’s see how many the school can do!
Have fun! Remember if you have questions about adding to or improving your fitness routine, please see one of your instructors. We are here to help!
We begin each class with some meditation time. Students sit cross legged, eyes closed for anywhere from 1 to 5 minutes. Deep breath in, deep breath out. Breathing in the positive, breathing out the negative.
Doing the best we can to clear our minds of all the chatter.
We meditate to help us focus. It encourages us to be present in the current moment. Letting go what happened earlier today. Letting be what may or may not happen later. Numerous studies on meditation comment on its benefits. Even a short daily practice can significantly reduce stress, improve focus, increase awareness, and aid productivity and performance.
It’s often hard for students, young or old, to sit quietly for even a short period. Like anything we want to improve, we practice. There are many different guided audios, videos, classes and articles about ways to meditate. Start slowly, try not to judge yourself, and persevere. Find what works best for you!
Here are some helpful links: 5 Tips on How to Meditate for Beginners, How to Start a Beginners Meditation Practice, Best Meditation Podcasts 2015, Meditation for Beginners
March is National Nutrition Month!
What you eat and drink is as an important part of your self defense practice as your blocks and strikes. Good food choices make your body and mind feel better!
Everyone is different. There is no diet plan perfect for everyone. Make sure you listen to your doctor and pediatrician.
1. Be mindful of what you are eating! Try not to eat while you are doing something else. Think about why you are choosing a certain food over others.
2. Read labels! Watch for added sugar and ingredients you don’t recognize.
3. Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables! Spend more time on the grocery store perimeter than in the isles.
4. Drink plenty of water!
5. Check out farmers markets, co-ops and other natural food stores!
This week we are celebrating, along with the entire nation, Random Acts of Kindness!
Kindness is something you do for someone else. It’s not a requirement, like a chore, homework or practice but takes a little bit of extra action. Complimenting a stranger, giving up your seat, or sharing a treat are all super examples of kindness. It is the ultimate act of self defense!
We encourage our students year round to keep track of all the kind things they do every day. We log them into the student website, keep a daily notebook or simply write them on any scrap paper. This helps us to be mindful of what we do and aids us in noticing when others our kind to us. We read Kindness sheets in class to give us all ideas in ways we can be kinder to others.
Students who log the most Kindness Acts in a testing cycle are awarded with our Action Hero Patch!
Would your child’s classroom benefit from an infusion of kindness? Please talk with us about our school kindness challenge. It’s simple: students write down all their Acts of Kindness, over a one-week period on supplied sheets, and then turn them into their teacher. The class with the most acts turned in wins a pizza party at their school! Individual students can earn medals! The challenge can be completed by an entire school, grade level or individual classroom. We provide all materials and incentives! Our instructors are happy to schedule a visit to your school to talk about the importance of kindness.
We encourage all our students, children and adults, to make being part of our Demonstration Team a goal.
Our team performs at parties, schools, and a variety of community events throughout the year.
Performing in front of any audience helps promote practice and builds confidence. Students learn to work together, build on strengths and help others overcome challenges. Social anxiety, on both a large (public speaking) and small scale (making friends) afflicts 13% of our population. A welcoming and supportive environment allows our students to improve both here at the Academy and at their schools or work places.
For more information on overcoming social anxiety visit these websites: http://www.anxietybc.com/resources/social.php
Happy New Year to our Students, Parents and Families!
The New Year is typically a time for resolution and setting goals, even though as martial artists we are taught to continually be resolute with the daily practice of goal setting.
We would like to encourage and support all of our students and friends by helping everyone realize their goals. The multitude of self-help books and articles found in magazines and the internet recommend being realistic in your goals:
- Set small bench marks and be specific.
- Think of alternatives to behavior, not just a list of what not to do.
- Make sure the change is important to you and not others.
We’ve created a goal sheet to help. Click this link: Goal Sheet to work on line or print out the attached copy. Focus on the three main areas in your life – physical, work/career/school, personal. Write down one goal in each area. Be as specific as possible. Make an action plan and develop a time line by listing three specific steps with a target completion date that will help you reach your objectives. Record a means of support: an accountability partner, person, group etc.
Remember set backs can be lessons for growth and the practice of framing your thoughts in a positive manner. We are here to help!
Again, have a Happy, Healthy New Year!
The Kiap Carol (to the Carol of the Bells)
Hark! how the yells
All seem to say,
“Great class today!”
Working out here
Brings us good cheer,
Both young and old,
Meek and the bold.
With every chop
In sparring rings
Kicking back swing
Words of support
Never run short
Oh how they shout,
Sharing home rules,
Be at your best
White belt through black
Always give back
Pilsung! Pilsung! Pilsung! I can do it!
Pilsung! Pilsung! Pilsung! I can do it!
Seeds that we sew
Through Tae Kwon Do
Setting the tone
In ev’ry home
Over the holidays we are focusing on FAMILY! One of the best things about the study and practice of Martial Arts is that it’s something children and adults can do together!
Children are working on earning their FAMILY patches for their uniforms. Think and talk about what you can do to help your family. Some ideas from our mat chat yesterday included: Listen the first time! Play nicely with cousins (even if they’re not your favorite). Help with cleaning and cooking. Visit relatives and actually talk with them – not just play on your phone. Say please and thank you.
To earn the badge, students can write us a short paragraph about what they worked on and how it helped!
If you are new to our academy, Merit Badges compliment our life skills education for children. It’s another innovative Learn to Earn character development system for our students in preschool through 6th grade. Like many of J.K. Lee Black Belt Academy’s programs, the merit badge program introduces and reinforces valuable life skills such as Focus, Discipline and Confidence in a manner that is age specific and fun! Merit Badges are much more than badges. They motivate your child with the incentive of earning through the life skills they learn. It builds their self-esteem and inspires them to always do their best!
Adult students don’t typically earn badges but we do take time to reflect on ways we can help and nurture our families. We encourage you to share ideas and suggestions!
All of our instructors and staff are thankful for all of our wonderful families! Your commitment and support help make teaching joyful!