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Stop School Violence with Martial Arts
Part 3: Martial artists learn that violence is not the answer.
 More of this Feature
• Part 1: Introduction
• Part 2: Building Self-Esteem
• Part 3: Violence Not an Answer
• Part 4: Stop Bullying Early

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"I've never really met anyone who's gone to a good instructor who hasn't become less violent; I don't really think MA promotes violence as such. It's a bit of a 'Just because I don't like fighting doesn't mean I'm not good at it.'"

Studying the martial arts involves much more than learning how to punch, kick, or throw someone. At its core is martial knowledge--the understanding of conflict and its resolution. As students gain this knowledge, they become more at ease in conflict situations--they know that physical force is not the only way to resolve a problem.

Most martial arts instructors include training in resolving situations without resorting to physical force. Sometimes the lessons are simply awareness--common-sense street smarts. Sometimes they include assertiveness and bully resistance training as well.

Universal, though, is the notion that the martial arts knowledge bestowed upon the young student is a powerful resource--to be used only in definitive self-defense situations.
A Kid's Viewpoint

About's Job Search Canada Guide, Brian Mairs, is also a yellow belt in chito-ryu karate, and the father of two martial artist sons, David, 15, and Steven, 10.

Brian recalls a tournament where his father attended to watch his grandsons compete. Grandpa Mairs expressed his displeasure at the kids "learning fighting." David, then a 10-year old yellow belt, smiled and calmly stated, "Grandpa, I do this so I don't have to fight."

Brian's entire family is involved in the martial arts. All of the Mairs have medaled at regional, provinical, and even national competitions.

Meet Brian at About Job Searching in Canada.


Martial arts emphasize inner calm and meditation--it's one of the intriguing paradoxes of the martial arts that in order to execute really fast techniques, you have to be relaxed, calm, and focused, rather than excited, or high-strung.

Deep breathing exercises allow students to calm themselves if necessary, helping to manage anger. In addition, martial arts practice, with its kicking and punching and kiai, or spirit yells, allows kids to release tension and aggression in a controlled environment--the martial arts school.

Humility and respect are at the core of martial arts philosophy. The self-esteem gained by learning martial arts gives kids the confidence to walk away from fights without feeling like a coward.

Next page > Stop Bullying Early > Page 1, 2, 3, 4

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