Knife Fights And Hugs

April 19, 2013

The other day I overheard quite the conversation between my instructor and the father of a six year old white belt. It went something like this:

Dad: Will you teach my son how to defend against a knife attack?
Instructor: Well, we do that in higher belts. Timmy*, you having a lot of trouble with knife attacks at school these days?
Timmy: No sir.
Instructor: Let’s work on getting everything we need for white belt first.
Dad: Okay.

*Name changed to protect the weaponless.

It amazes me how many parents put their kids in martial arts with the main goal of giving their child the best chance at defending themselves in the worst case scenarios. I guess I understand, especially because of what is in the news these days, but in reality, worst case scenarios are few and far between. Much more prevalent are playground punks that get pushy with a game of tag or a hyper friend that hasn’t learned that squeezy neck “hugs” are not okay. This is were kids martial arts self defence really has a chance to shine.

When my daughter came home today and told me: “I had to elbow Jane** in the ribs today. She was squeezing my neck so hard I couldn’t use my voice to tell her to let go, but it’s okay, we’re still friends.”, that’s how I know my child’s martial arts training is really paying off. It’s not a knife fight, it’s her friend not respecting her space. She stood up for herself and used a level of force appropriate to the situation. Well done my girl, well done.

**Name changed to protect the over-zealous hugger.