Back to School: Children’s Self Defense Tips

martial arts instructor kneeling while teaching two students in blue uniforms self defense tipsBack to School: Children’s Self Defense Tips


coach sitting in group circle educating children about self defenseSelf-defense comes from being educated

Summer is over! And now it’s time for your child to head back to school. This blog will help parents navigate some difficult scenarios that may happen regarding children’s self-defense. It is important to educate your kids on how to communicate effectively, set boundaries, and defend themselves in a safe way. Parents should also educate themselves on their school district’s policies regarding these matters as well.

Preventing dangerous situations at school

Your child is learning many things at school. One thing not often discussed is situational awareness. This is a very important skill for your child to develop. Your child needs to know what type of people or situations to avoid. Your child also needs to know what type of people to trust. Talk with your child about what to look out for and what to stay away from, before things escalate into a dangerous self-defense situation at school.

kids coach in bottom side control position teaching student how to communicate with confidenceChildren communicating with confidence

You have probably heard it before – bullies like to prey on other kids who they know are “easy” targets. Educate your child on communicating with confidence. Your child should have a strong, clear voice when needed and body language that also shows confidence. Examples are eye contact, upright posture, and facing a kid directly when communicating. When your child can communicate confidently, it will reduce the likelihood of dangerous self-defense situations.

two children practicing jiu jitsu and learning about setting boundriesChildren’s self-defense: knowing your boundaries

Discuss emotional and physical boundaries with your child. What situations warrant your child simply ignoring a bully? What situations warrant your child setting a boundary by saying no? When should a child talk to a teacher or parent about a situation? When should a child have to defend themselves physically? Let your child know the emotional and physical boundaries that should not be crossed and how to respond appropriately.

female jiu jitsu student in top mount practicing how to physically defend herselfWhen should children physically defend themselves?

In our kids jiu-jitsu classes, we tell our students “your body is your body.” No other person has the right to touch, hit, push, or spit on your child. If this is happening and your child has tried to communicate with the person, attempted to set a boundary, or tried to communicate with a trusted adult or teacher, it may be time to use skills learned in a children’s self-defense class to physically defend themself.

Why is BJJ the best martial art for children’s self-defense?

Many martial arts teach striking as their main form of self-protection. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, however, is a martial art focused on grappling (similar to wrestling or judo). Your child will learn how to defend punches, kicks, biting, shoves, etc. They will learn how to take a fight to the ground and control a bully. They will be able to defend themselves without having to hit someone. This will reduce the chances of your child and the bully getting injured. This will also help to show the school district that your child was using self-defense rather than violence.

flier with details about an upcoming bully defense seminar in fort collinsSelf-protection through education

At McMahon Training Center, we have heard countless stories about how kids educated at our academy have been able to defend themselves effectively. In almost all of these cases our students have not only come out unscathed, but the bully involved was not seriously injured as well. These children’s self-defense concepts are important so your child can have the confidence needed to have safe and healthy relationships. Any child 3 ½ or older can come and try 2 free weeks of classes at our academy and learn the skills they need.

We are also offering a Free Bully Defense Seminar this Month!

See you on the mat!