Bullying is an unfortunate experience in many childhoods. Though we may not be able to always prevent these occurrences, we CAN empower our children to take control during these situations. Gracie Barra Long Island is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu school that teaches anti-bullying techniques for kids. Owner Joe Scarola and his instructors teach both verbal and physical techniques so kids can protect themselves.
Speaking at a level that kids could understand, the Gracie Barra Long Island instructors use an anti-bullying system that includes three levels of reactions.
1) Step One: Walk Away and Ignore
The instructors advised that when a bully calls your child a name, teach your child to “catch the comment” and then “throw it away.” After that, you child finishes by saying something nice about herself. For example, if someone calls your child ugly, you child should mimic catching the comment with her hand and throwing the comment in the trash with her imagination. She should then say something positive about herself like, “I am beautiful.” Your child should also tell everyone – teachers, parents, friends – about the bullying.
2) Step Two: Stand Up for Yourself
If the verbal bullying doesn’t stop, your child must now stand up for herself to show she is strong. Bullies tend to target others they perceive as weak. Your child needs to use a strong voice and body language. Stand up straight, shoulders high, chest forward and head up. Look the bully in the eyes, and using a firm voice say, “Stop this now!” or some variation of this. It’s not what your child says, but how she says it that will portray her as strong.
3) Step Three: Self Defense
When the bully becomes physically aggressive like pushing, kicking or punching, it’s time for your child to use Jiu Jitsu for self defense. The purpose of Jiu Jitsu is not to encourage fighting or to hurt the bully, but rather to get free and escape to safety. Often when a bully sees a child knows how to physically defend herself, the bully will see her as a strong person and leave her alone. If the bully continues to physically assault your child, the Jiu Jitsu skills will come in handy for taking down the bully.
Self-defense is not something that can be learned in just a few days, so to have your child’s defense mode become second nature, you should consider enrolling them into Jiu Jitsu classes. To find out more about anti-bullying programs and classes at Gracie Barra Long Island, please visit gblongisland.com.
Gracie Barra Long Island
24 Jericho Turnpike
New Hyde Park, NY 11040
Related Post: Bullying Resources on Long Island