Holiday Safety!

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

Guardian Traits

Dave Young’s End of Year and Holiday Safety Tips

  1. Increase your level of AWARENESS.
  2. 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.
  3. Carefully screen friendly knocks at the door – it may not be the person you think behind it.
  4. Watch hands as people approach you, they may not have something good inside their pockets.
  5. When shopping, be conscious of people spending more time watching you than the items they came to buy.
  6. Pay attention as you walk into stores – make sure people from the outside don’t follow you in.
  7. Keep your personal belongings close and your family members even closer.
  8. Discuss your “Family Action Plan.” Know what will family members do and where will they go in case of an emergency.
  9. 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.
  10. Do not count on the call for help to be your safety plan!

 

Advertisements

National Physical Fitness Month Challenges!

sit ups

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!

Beginning with Meditation

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.

dom meditating (2)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 PracticeBest Meditation Podcasts 2015, Meditation for Beginners

Celebrating Kindness!

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!
IMG_5188
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. 

 

On Demonstrations!

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.

1897759_819522064787205_8597328945283284029_n

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.

10409647_819522141453864_2074439016458111600_n

For more information on overcoming social anxiety visit these websites: http://www.anxietybc.com/resources/social.php

http://socialanxietydisorder.about.com

 

Resolutions and Goal Setting!

Happy New Year to our Students, Parents and Families!IMG_1288 (2)

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!

Happy Holidays!

NutcrackerThe Kiap Carol (to the Carol of the Bells)

Hark! how the yells
Strengthening swells.
All seem to say,
“Great class today!”
Working out here
Brings us good cheer,
Both young and old,
Meek and the bold.

Kiap, Kiap
With every chop
In sparring rings
Kicking back swing
Words of support
Never run short
Constantly learn
Mastery earned

Oh how they shout,
Vanquishing doubt,
Visiting schools,
Sharing home rules,
Sabonim says
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

Focus on Family!

Family CollageOver 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!

Top 5 Things We Learned from Tournament!

Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance

Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance!

The week following Tournament we reflect on what we’ve learned. The emphasis is always on learning rather than winning. Here’s our top five answers:

5. People are helpful! Staff and high belts were in abundance to answer questions but it’s also wonderful how supportive and encouraging people can be even when competing against them.

4. Holding is key! A properly held board can be the difference between breaking and not. Make sure to check the holds.

3. Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance! A quote from a 6 year old student, “It was just like you said, practicing made it easy!”

2. We learn by watching what others do! Whether in sparring, breaking or forms competition, seeing what others do well helps improve our own techniques.

1. I can do it! Most of us are nervous prior to competition (children and adults) but we persevere. It’s a super reminder that a POSITIVE ATTITUDE is key.

Thanks to everyone who helped and competed! We are super proud of all our students and families!

Tournament Ready: Exploring the Five P’s

TournamentWe are working in all of our classes to get ready for the upcoming Fall Tournament of Champions. Our Academy hosts two annual tournaments which take place in the Fall and Spring. We encourage everyone to participate, beginners through Black Belts; children and adults. Tournament is not about winning and losing.  It is about learning how to compete, deal with pressure and use self-discipline to achieve a goal. Participation builds patience, self control, confidence and good sportsmanship.

Our discussions with all students have emphasized the 5 P’s: Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance! In order to do well at anything, we need to practice. We don’t merely go through the motions. We practice how we would want to perform. It’s important to find time every day. Even 10 minutes helps! This adaptation of an old military adage is also a good reminder that our self defense fundamentals should be practiced with that same intensity. It’s difficult to think under stress, but your muscles will remember what they’ve done.

Investigating the 5 P’s  led us to review what it means to be a good student, whether at Tae Kwon Do, grade school, college, music lessons, continuing education, etc. A good student is:

Present – Physically and mentally. Let all those other things wait. Focus on the here and now.

Prepared – Review the previous lesson on your own, with your family or in a study group. Bring all materials or equipment.

Productive – Stay on task. Ask questions. There’s time before and after class to visit and sometimes play!

Polite – Showing courtesy and respect to everyone, including parents, teachers and peers, is part of our core values. Be welcoming and encouraging to others.

Positive – At our Academy “can’t” is considered a bad word. Our school greeting is “Pilsung!” A Korean word meaning “certain victory” or for the children “I can do it!”.

We encourage you to take stock of where you are in relation to the 5 P’s as a competitor, student, parent and professional!

If you want to learn more about our Tournament click here: http://jkleeblackbelt.com/tournament/