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Everyone is looking for a healthy lifestyle these days. Personal trainers, aerobics, CrossFit, yoga and the like are all booming. Martial arts too are on the rise but are often not the first option and for easily apparent reasons. Based on the movies and media, it takes a high degree of flexibility to perform in the martial arts. High kicks are the norm and deep splits are an absolute necessity, if film and TV are to be believed. Thankfully this is not the case. Few martial artists over the age of 40 can achieve anything like full splits or kick to head height. Neither is necessary anyway and whilst good flexibility is developed through proper martial arts study, if you can’t perform a full-splits, it will never be an issue. Low kicks are better anyway in terms of self-defence.

Martial Arts Develops Great Flexibility

However, as I said before proper martial arts training should develop good flexibility. A problem with most people is that through normal life we don’t use our flexibility much. We spend our days sitting in front of screens, bent in half as we sit, hips fully flexed for so long that they become like rusty hinges. By the time we’re in our 30’s we’re all as stiff as boards. This might put prospective black belts off stepping over the threshold of a martial arts academy, but it shouldn’t.

Unlike many other sports (I hate linking the martial arts to sport. They are not a sport, they are a way of life) and activities which fail in the area of flexibility, the martial arts do not. Dynamic warm ups and static cooldowns are the norm in dojos across the world, which accounts for the lower levels of sprains and strains in the martial arts than in other physical activities.

There are very good reasons too, to be more flexible, for one, they help to keep us looking and feeling younger. The standard image of old people is one of stiffness in muscle and joint but that needn’t be the case. The martial arts will build better ranges of motion than most hobbies that you’ll come across.

On top of that, the combat arts also build muscle and cardio fitness at high levels too. When you add in the skill element, that keeps people practicing for years, you have a real winner in terms of holistic health.

The Key to Maintaining Life Long Health & Fitness

The key to maintaining life long health and fitness is twofold; the first reason is the skill element which is far more motivating in the martial arts than simply humping iron around or the monotonous demands of a Step class. Resistance training is essential for building strong muscles which improve posture and help carrying on our tasks of daily living, such as carrying the shopping, but lifting weights, for the most part doesn’t interest many for very long. A skill on the other hand keeps us challenged and whilst I fully acknowledge that there is a good degree of skill in lifting weights, especially, as they get heavier, for the average punter however, that skill is hardly necessary when you’re swinging an 8kg kettlebell. Those activities that develop skill keep us motivated for much longer. The martial arts obviously have that covered in spades, yoga, dance and those sports that are lower impact are good too. The problem with most sports is they tend to be high impact and competitive which is an invitation to injury and long lay-offs as we age.

The second reason is the ability to adjust your training load to suit your body’s capabilities as you get older. CrossFit is great as are gymnastics and the like, but as you age there demands become too much for the aging frame. I never take on any activity that I can’t imagine doing when I’m 80, and while I’m nearly 60 now, and still able to train at a good level, my motivation for the kind of wipe out workout of my 20’s and 30’s is dropping rapidly. High impact and high intensity sports are difficult as you get older, partly because we can’t be bothered and partly because the effort level required is just too much.

If You Can’t Imagine Doing  the Exercise at 80 – Why Bother?

The intensity of martial arts training however, can be adjusted to both your age and motivation. The image of the sage-like master is a true one. Gichin Funakoshi, Morihei Ueshiba and Jigoro Kano all trained throughout their 70’s, which was when they passed.

So, if your level of flexibility and or fitness level is putting you off getting involved in the martial arts, then set those fears aside. If you’re looking for lifelong fitness that is not a chore or requires placing twice your bodyweight above your head, then seek out a reputable martial arts academy and give it a go. A good academy will offer a free 121 lesson with a trained and qualified instructor in nice surroundings that you’re sure to find much friendlier, than you’d probably expect. Go on, give it a try.

Thanks for reading.

Tony Higo January 2019.

Tony Higo is an 8th degree black belt master of the martial arts and founder of the AEGIS system. He has written several books on the martial arts and works with many of the top martial artists and instructors in the UK. For more details on the AEGIS system go to www.aegismartialarts.co.uk.

The post Martial Arts, Yes you can! appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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There are two types of old people; those who think they are old and those who think they’re not. Nearing my 60’s myself, I count myself in the second group. As far as I’m concerned, I’m still only 28. I hit that age, decided it was a good fit, and decided to stay there.

I can maintain this self-image if I don’t go near any mirrors. Mirrors are tricky and try to break my delusion. Also, I tend to blame any injuries or conditions that I suffer from on old age. It’s funny but when I suffered from the same injuries and conditions in my 20’s, I blamed them on the activity or genetics or just bad luck. But now I blame my age. Funny isn’t it?

I know that I can still hold my own with the young ones but for those not already practicing the martial arts it must be quite daunting and off-putting to consider martial arts for getting fit. The media and the movies only have two images of martial artists; Bruce Lee types, young fresh and tough or Mr. Miyagi’s, older sage like types. The problem in their portrayal is that to become a Mr. Miyagi, you first must be a Bruce Lee. You must pass the Bruce Lee phase before you become a Miyagi, and that takes years. Basically, start when you’re young. This doesn’t help more mature athletes turning to martial arts.

What do I mean when I refer to mature people?

Good question, I would say that the rot sets in during our 40’s kids and careers take precedence during our 20’s and 30’s and keeping fit often has to take a back seat. By the time we hit our 40’s those years of no exercise make getting back into condition look like an uphill struggle and any injuries that weren’t resolved at the time start to make us feel a little creaky in the joints.

The truth is, being in our 40’s can be a great time physically once we get started. After a few weeks we realize that we’re not that old and our vigor is still with us. Even in our 50’s, the same is true. The most difficult thing is to get started. Once we do, we again, realize that peak fitness is still within our grasp. Muscles get firmer, lungs get stronger and joints get nice and flexible. We might be a bit older, but we’re far from finished.

I like teaching older people, or shall I re-phrase that and say, people in their prime? Because they try hard, have the maturity to not expect too much and best of all they have a ‘don’t give a damn’ attitude that younger people could benefit from.

Something else that can put ‘prime timers’ off is the image of the martial arts. In the media it’s either blood, snot, shaved heads and huge tattoos (and the men are no better – ha ha) or serene sages throwing attackers about without touching them. Neither of which is reality. The good news is that most martial arts academies take great care of everyone who trains with them irrespective of age, sex or creed. Even the most hard-nosed cage fighting club will be friendly and look after you. There are only those on the fringes who won’t and in my experience they are rare.

Obviously, if you want to be sure, you can visit a few clubs and see whether they fit your bill. If not go elsewhere. Look for places with a written curriculum, trained instructors and a good reputation.

‘But I don’t want to fight or be hit!’

I hear you say and quite rightly too. Whilst many people would rather not fight, that’s ok because martial arts academies probably don’t fight any where like as much as you think. Only about 10% of any class is based on free-sparring and good academies will never force you to fight if you don’t want to. What often happens though is that even the meekest of students at the outset eventually want to test out their skills through sparring. Still, if you never want to, you don’t have to.

Most of what we see portrayed as martial arts, shows the most extreme elements, so don’t let that put you off. It’s a safe activity and in fact, cricket, aerobics and football are much riskier when it comes down to it.

What benefits have martial arts versus gym or a yoga class?

The simple that for old and young alike, the martial arts provides balance in fitness. There are basically 4 parts to fitness; stamina, strength, suppleness and skill. Stamina is cardio endurance. The ability to run for a bus for instance without blowing a gasket. Strength deals with the muscles. Staying strong enough to be able to easily carry bags of shopping to the car. Suppleness is joint health. The image of old people is there stiffness of joints and slow movement. Good joint health is essential as we age. Nobody wants their range of movement to be limited or painful. Skill of course is key to the interest that the study brings, an activity that challenges motor skills and coordination keeps us motivated to continue longer.

Most sports and physical activities bring only some of these benefits, and some require a competitiveness that we can do without. So, the martial arts are not just for the young, they are for everyone. Sure, we will perform them to the level that we can physically, but the mental challenges are often more suited to the older student.

You’re not old, you’re in your prime

If you’re in your prime, 40, 50 and more, the martial arts should be explored as a way to stay the effects of old age. It’s safer than most other sports and activities, brings new friendships that will last a lifetime.

The key is, are you going to set as ide the number that is your age and recognise that it is just a number? Age is just a number, so if you’re in your prime maybe it’s the time to expand your horizons and consider the Martial Arts.

Thanks for reading.

Tony Higo January 2019.

Tony Higo is an 8th degree black belt master of the martial arts and founder of the AEGIS system. He has written several books on the martial arts and works with many of the top martial artists and instructors in the UK. For more details on the AEGIS system go to www.aegismartialarts.co.uk.

The post Martial Arts – Not for Old People…? appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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In answering this question last time, I focused on what we try to achieve with children in terms of physical and mental outcomes; confidence and athletic ability. Today, I’d like to focus directly on the question ‘Does martial arts training make children more violent?’

The short answer is no, but obviously you’d expect me to say that, being a lifelong martial arts instructor, but I want to go into this question more thoroughly for those of you who may not find that answer convincing.

Here it is. It’s easy to think that an army is prepared for war and violence and soldiers train to fight and kill. On one level this is correct, they are always ready to fight but fighting is the last resort and never the first. The purpose of an army is to be ready to defend the country against threats to the population, but they avoid fighting for several entirely valid reasons.:

For one, war is expensive, it causes lots of damage to people and property and for years after trauma to those affected by it. Secondly, there is no guarantee that your army will win and losing might mean you lose your country. To counter this armies, instead of jumping into a risky and expensive war, use threats instead. They train their soldiers and show off their weapons, marching them around and doing maneuvers to show how tough they are as a deterrent to other nations.

A martial artist, like an army, too must consider the risks in fighting. It’s not like the movies, fights rarely have outright winners and the winner is often the one who is the least hurt, not the completely unhurt. No injuries at all would be very rare. So just as for armies, martial artists make combat the last resort and never the first. These are strategic reasons for avoiding violence, now let’s have a look at some emotional reasons.

My experience is that martial arts training makes one calmer, not more violent. Once again, let me justify this:

What kinds of people are violent? Often it is those who are afraid. Look at those men who walk as if they are very tough, swaggering as they go to prove they are tough and that others should keep out of their way. Why? Because they don’t feel tough. In fact, they feel fearful and threatened so they act tough to put people off from being threatening to them. It’s what we in AEGIS call a Toughness strategy. Acting tougher than you are to put others off, much like the doormen on night club doors, they employ the biggest and ugliest guys they can get as a deterrent to trouble makers. Are the doormen tough? Hopefully, their mean looks mean they don’t have to show how tough they really are.

On the other hand, people who are not fearful don’t need to do this because, well, they’re not afraid. Martial artists are like this. They burn off all their aggression in the dojo and when they are finished their emotions are quiet and calmed. You could think about it like with children. When it’s raining, they stay inside but after too long thy get stir crazy and must burn off their excess energy. In fact, parents use this as a strategy to calm their children down. It’s the same with martial arts, but more so, because in the martial arts we burn off our energy through combat.

We know what we are capable of and this brings a sense of responsibility toward the safety of others. Furthermore, in the martial arts we teach a higher than normal level of courtesy and respect and that training which is sadly lacking in other sports and activities, makes all the difference. Instructors, also, live by this high level of respect which reinforces the message because students learn, not just by being taught, but by copying the actions and modelling the behavior of their instructor.

So, the answer to the question ‘Does the martial arts make children more violent?’ is No, and now you know why. Thanks for reading.

Tony Higo January 2019.

Tony Higo is an 8th degree black belt master of the martial arts and founder of the AEGIS system. He has written several books on the martial arts and works with many of the top martial artists and instructors in the UK. For more details on the AEGIS system go to www.aegismartialarts.co.uk.

The post Martial Arts Make Kids More Violent? Part 2 appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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Many people appreciate what the martial arts offers children but many more don’t. Does the martial arts teach people to be more violent? If it doesn’t what does it teach children? How does it compare with other activities such as football or dance?

Sometimes I speak to the mums of a bullied child fearful that we’ll teach their child how to be as violent as their bully. Sometimes I speak to parents who want me to teach their child how to beat up their bully!

Neither way is either the right way or true. The martial arts do focus on what on the face of it is violence and we do teach children how to fight back but how we do it and how it expresses itself is quite different from what you might expect. Here’s what happens…

Consider the biggest thing that separates people; difference, kids who are bullied are different. It could be race, religion, looks, intelligence or ability, but what marks them from their bully is that they are different. Being different can cause us to lack confidence because we are different, rather than to embrace our difference, we fear it and our confidence suffers for it.

So how do the martial arts help to stop a child being bullied without violence?

First, we focus on ability and communication. We teach children how to be courteous and respectful. Sometimes shyness, which is a lack of confidence, expresses itself in poor communication. They break the first rule of socialization which is to not speak or make pleasant eye contact. This immediately sets them apart and it’s easy to upset a sensitive person by showing them what at first glance may look like disrespect. And yes, bullies are often very sensitive and easily offended. They have a different kind of communication issue.

We teach children to show everyone a high level of respect even though they may find this uncomfortable at first. Uncomfortable because they must set aside their discomfort and step into the discomfort zone. By doing this the child becomes less of a target, their body language changes and they become less ‘small’ like they’re trying to hide and assume a more comfortable way of moving because they are more comfortable socially. The way that children move often marks them as different. Confident kids have confident posture, smile more and fear less.

Next, we teach them how to move

Some kids have great natural, physical intelligence and they are usually strong, fast and coordinated. Because they are physical, they tend to be more physical and that gets them stronger and better coordinated. They can run, jump, throw, roll, climb and lift. All these things are basic skills and abilities that we all need, and which develop in us when we are very young. When we are babies the first thing we learn to do is roll from our back to our side to our front. When we eventually learn to roll, we then start to push up with our arms, then crawl, then stand and eventually walk and run.

These are not only physical skills, they also affect our mental development too. They must be learned in the right order too or the child’s development can be retarded. A child that doesn’t learn these skills at a young age and at a good level can find sports and physical activities more challenging. Also, because they don’t get as fit and strong as their physically gifted counterparts, they fail to develop good posture because their muscles are weak. Poor posture and stance will set the child apart, making her more different and this exacerbates the problem.

In martial arts we seek to achieve balance, strength, timing, speed and spatial awareness. We teach children how to move with purpose and confidence (there’s that ‘C’ word again).  Good movement is an acquired skill. Therefore, we need to learn it early and well. But it’s more than that too good movement signifies good health, strength and presence.

Gradually, and sometimes, suddenly the child stops being bullied. Subconsciously, to the bullying mind he starts to become less visible. Bullies need kids who are different, obvious targets. They need others to support their abuse of the person who is so obviously different or less. They are like heat seeking missiles, only their seeking is not heat, its confidence, or lack of it. The martial arts taught properly, with a deliberate curriculum, delivered by highly trained professional instructors who know what their outcome is and how to achieve it. Sadly, not all martial arts instructors fit this description, so you may have to shop around till you find one.

Now, in some cases the bully still sees the child and carries on his bullying. In these circumstances the child can fall back on to using physical force using skills acquired through his martial arts training. There’s no guarantee that they will defeat their bully, but it’s amazing what a punch in the nose will do for an aggressor. Bullies want easy targets, not those that fight back.

So, look beyond the combative side of the martial arts through to the development side of skills and balance that the study of it brings; confidence, empowerment, skill, strength, stamina and suppleness. Don’t be afraid to put your child with a trained instructor, take that free lesson, watch that class and see your awkward duckling transform into the confident swan that lies within.

Tony Higo January 2019.

Tony Higo is an 8th degree black belt master of the martial arts and founder of the AEGIS system. He has written several books on the martial arts and works with many of the top martial artists and instructors in the UK. For more details on the AEGIS system go to www.aegismartialarts.co.uk

The post Martial Arts – Teaching Kids How to Be Violent? appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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We wanted to congratulate our student Jake Frood from our Leeds North Academy for being selected to help promote the new Lego Ninjago movie.

Chosen because of his status as the world’s youngest black belt, Jake has had some great experiences as a result.

He got to meet Olympic Gold Medallist Jade Jones, even getting to do a seminar with her and spar with her as well!
 
 

 

The post Worlds Youngest Blackbelt, Trained by AEGIS, Selected to Promote the New Lego Ninjago Movie appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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Tactics over Techniques

I see lots of examples of martial arts and what I see is just a repetition of what everyone else is doing, which is acquiring more techniques. More techniques means more complication, more to memorise, more to practice and this leads to a diffusion of ones skill and you risk becoming ‘a jack of all trades and master of none’. The more different things we practice, the less good we can be at any one of those things.

Today’s martial arts masters don’t understand the difference between tactics and technique and seem only to encourage their students to acquire more techniques rather than how to apply them in more situations. There’s an old proverb in the martial arts which says ‘one technique mastered is worth a thousand sampled’ and this means we can be great if we master a few techniques providing we have good strategies to apply them.

The law of predictability says ‘if you keep on doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep on getting what you’ve always got’. This works fine if the result you get is a good result, but even then, we must progress, evolve and adapt if we are to be effective in what we do. Science is evolving, sport is evolving, technology is evolving yet the martial arts are acting as if nothing has changed.

The law of leverage says ‘create more with less’ and this means being efficient. Efficiency should be the goal of every martial artist, to get the best result possible in any given situation. Basically, to avoid conflict and if it can’t be avoided, to emerge safely from it. This is not easy as every situation brings its own challenges to overcome but it is predictable in that most situations bring up the same types of challenge. This is where tactics come in.

A tactic is like a hammer and a technique is like a nail. The technique is the fix for a situation which in carpentry is to fix two pieces of wood together. The nail only works in a small number of situations. It is only fit for one purpose which is to be knocked into wood and it only needs to be fit for that purpose, such as being long enough and strong enough to keep two pieces of wood together. The hammer though is more adaptable, it can be used with other types of nail and in other ways, such as heavily, lightly, quickly, angled and even to remove the nail if it goes in wrong.

The nail is useless without the hammer and once it’s used it’s pretty much useless as a nail anymore but the hammer can be used with 1000’s of other nails. It’s important therefore, to know the difference between using hammers and nails (techniques and tactics). The hammer is how we use the nail and, the tactic is how we use the technique. Tactics are more important than techniques because if you have only one technique but many tactics you can win but if you have many techniques and no tactics you will more than likely lose.

The key then, is in the balance of tactics and techniques, combining them together, to get the best result. For example, the right cross is a technique and our hammer, the tactic, is how we use that right cross. The right cross has the power to knock someone out but only if it can be landed well. It needs a good tactic to set it up. The tactic could be a left jab which is fast and hard to defend. If the jab lands well the cross is more likely to, whereas the right cross alone has more distance to travel which means more can go wrong on the way, like it being seen and defended against. Here then, the tactic is to prepare the way for the cross using a reaction strategy (the jab) to create an opening for it.

Any technique is only useful when it is backed by the right tactics and those tactics are a combination of distance, leverage, timing, speed and the balance of these 5 factors in cooperation. These tactics apply in carpentry as in combat but unlike carpentry, combat has added complications. The wood that we hammer the nail into will not try to resist our efforts except to the degree of the hardness of the wood but in combat our opponent will actively, try to defend against the right cross being hammered home. Combat tactics must be broadened to meet this extra challenge using feints, fakes, draws and duplicities because our opponent, unlike wood, has, in most cases a desire not to be hit.

This reinforces the fact that tactics are more important than techniques and this can be summed up in the phrase ‘it ain’t what you do it’s the way that you do it’. However, too many martial artists forget that combat is not so much an exchange of techniques, as an exchange of tactics. It is strategy that wins, techniques are just part of the strategy.

In summary, if you want to become a better martial artist, you need techniques but more importantly, you need the tactics of how to apply those techniques in more situations. The best martial artists, sportspeople, actors and scientists don’t look for more techniques, they look for a few techniques and use superb tactics to adapt those techniques to many situations. This is the secret to martial arts greatness.

The post It ain’t what you do it’s the way you do it appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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AEGIS Martial Arts » Blog by Aegis Martial Arts Leeds - 10M ago

As a keen observer, judge and critic of the martial arts I’m often, if not mainly disappointed by what I see of hoe they are practised and taught. I almost used the word study there but I corrected myself because in the main, martial arts are not studied. They are instead copied and repeated, there is no study, no experimentation no testing or proving; just acceptance and repetition of that acceptance.

Why is this? The answer to that is ‘I’m not sure’ but I think it is because of the nature and motivation of the type of people who take up the martial arts. Many people take up the martial arts because they are afraid, lack confidence and self-esteem and most, in my opinion, never lose this. They are enrolled by an instructor who seems tough and knowledgeable and they put their trust in him, that he knows what they need to learn to overcome their deficiencies. But where did the instructor come from and what was his reasons for enrolling in the martial arts? Did he do so for the same reasons as his students? And if he did, has he overcome those deficiencies or is he simply hiding them behind a faced of ‘toughness’?

What happens next is that the student mainly believes in the instructor and what might be his ‘facade’ of toughness and because they never doubt what he teaches, they never think to adapt what he teaches or question its efficacy. There is a point where this should be the case as in Socrates’ 3 A’s of learning: accept, apply and adapt.

Initially when we learn we know nothing (presumably) and the best way of learning new knowledge is to simply put your trust in the teacher and do what he says based on the premise that he knows what he is doing and has taught many others in the same way that he is teaching you. This is the accept stage of learning.

This acceptance works for a while and enables us to build some basic skills and proficiencies but after a while we must apply what we have learned in our own practice, away from the instructor to improve our proficiency through repetition, in order to understand the skills we have been taught. This is the apply, stage of learning.

Next is the adapt stage where we begin to question and challenge what we have been taught. Most instructors hate this stage because they see the end of the relationship with their student who seems to be challenging his ‘rightness’. His attitude changes and the student’s attitude changes and the student quits believing his instructor didn’t know what he was talking about.

For most students I can agree with their reasons for quitting, though I suspect they do so without reasoning why. Instead they just ‘feel’ that they have gone as far as they can with this guy and that it’s time to move on.

This quitting might lessen if the instructor himself created the environment where it is accepted that he doesn’t know everything and that he too is still learning, but because the terms ‘master’ and ‘black belt’ are bandied about so much in the martial arts it suggests that these people have the maximum amount of learning possible and are therefore the font of all wisdom. But this dynamic allows no room for growth. Imagine if Einstein had accepted what he had been taught and never questioned it. We would not have what we have today with satellites, Iphones, laptops and all the other devices which make our lives so much easier than they were in the past.

Our teachers should embrace our questions rather than fear them. The fact that we question, test and challenge what we are taught is not to prove them wrong but to take what they have given us to the next level of understanding. We all stand on the shoulders of our previous generations and that doesn’t mean they didn’t know enough. It means that we couldn’t know what we know without they gave us what they knew.

However, as I have iterated earlier, the martial arts often preclude this deeper study, harking back to earlier ‘masters’ who knew everything and who every generation afterwards tries to understand what they taught, instead of standing on their shoulders to understand better even, than they did.

What then is the answer to this often repeated scenario? The answer is simple; accept what you are given, apply it through thousands of repetitions and gradually adapt it through questions, tests and challenges such as:

  • Would this work against a really fast opponent?
  • Would this work against a really strong opponent?
  • What strategies are at work here?
  • How can I do this better?

And many other similar questions. The key is to develop an incessant curiosity about what you do and know with a view to doing it better which means more efficiently. Don’t accept anything that you are taught without first testing and questioning it and if your instructor doesn’t like your questions and if they challenge or threaten his ego, then it is time to find a new instructor. However, if your instructor says ‘good question; let’s have a look at that in more detail’ then you may be in a place where you can truly develop.

Your instructor’s doesn’t know everything, he can’t possibly and you must accept it just as much as he does if you are to grow as a martial artist.

The post Accept, Apply and Adapt appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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Most school’s characteristics of effective learning are:

  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development
  • Communication and Language
  • Physical Development
  • Playing and Exploring (Engagement)
  • Active Learning

 

AEGIS Martial Arts can help develop these skills as well which means your child can be more prepared and progress even more at school. Check out how below!
 

  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development – By actively teaching socialisation skills we can help a child engage better with other children of a similar age. We also look at basic life skills such as courtesy and respect, which can help you child appreciate others and consider how their behaviour will affect them.
     
  • Communication and Language – As part of our programs we teach our students some of the most important parts of good communication such as eye contact and body language. By engaging students in class with questions we also encourage them to communicate their ideas and understanding on the exercises and drills they will do in their lessons.
     
  • Physical Development – Through martial arts training your child will develop a strong body and strong heart. It also helps younger child develop skills such as physical awareness, balance and coordination.
     
  • Playing and Exploring (Engagement) – AEGIS Martial Arts helps our students develop a ‘Can Do’ attitude. We encourage them to take on challenges and overcome obstacles in a safe environment as part of each lesson. This will help your child develop confidence to try new things and exploring outside of classes as well.
     
  • Active Learning – AEGIS Martial Arts provides your child the opportunity to learn by doing. By working techniques at the same time as an instructor and then having time to practice these themselves, they are engaged both physically and mentally during the whole process.

The post Martial Arts Can Help Your Child Perform Better at School! Here’s how…. appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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The Early Years Foundation Stage Framework (EYFSF) provides
the principles which guide the work of those working with children.

These principles believe that;

  • Enabling environments – the environment plays a key role in supporting and extending children’s development and learning
  • Every Child Is Unique – every child is a competent learner who can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured
  • Positive relationships – children learn to be strong from a base of loving and secure and loving relationship with a parent or key person
  • Learning & Development – children develop and learn in different ways and at different times; all areas of learning and development are equally important and inter connected.

 
All of these principle are present and are at the core of all our AEGIS Martial Arts Programs.
Check out our Core Values below and how they link with the EYFSF Principles;

Our Core 5 Values

  • Your best is our minimum standard
  • To help every student achieve first degree black belt – Enabling Environment
  • Recognise diversity and, as we are all different, award certificates and belts based on each student’s individual efforts and attitude and journey – Every Child Is Unique
  • Be professional, personable, integral, respectful and approachable-setting the example of a black belt leader at all times – Positive Relationships
  • Continuous professional and personal development through regular training and striving to always improve the AEGIS system – Learning & Development

 
As you can see, AEGIS Martial Arts focuses on providing a stimulating & supportive
environment to help your child perform well at school.

Find out how to get your child started in our trial program. Click here or call: 0800 092 0948

The post Give your Child a Positive Start at School this September appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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AEGIS Martial Arts » Blog by Aegis Martial Arts Halifax - 10M ago

As you might know, in the AEGIS system we use 25 elemental laws to guide us in getting the best out of our lives. These laws apply in both combat specifically and life generally and if you know what they are it gives you a greater understanding of how life works and how you can make it work better. One law that often comes to my mind is the law of expectation.

The AEGIS law of expectation says ‘you don’t get what you want or wish for, you only get what you confidently expect’. The question is – ‘what do you expect?’ do you expect the best or the worst? Think about it because we humans basically, have only 2 motivations – to move toward what we want and away from what we don’t want. This is why people get fat – they move toward chocolate and cake and away from salad and fruit. It’s the same with physical fitness – we can move toward it, which is difficult now but reaps benefits later or, we can avoid it, which is easy now but causes problems later as our bodies deteriorate, unable to fight the diseases that come as we age.

So back to the question – ‘what do you expect?’ and why do you expect it? do you expect the worst because that’s your conditioned state? You always feel things go bad so they do or do you always expect the best and seem to get it? it’s all about your perception – like the glass half full or half empty – it’s how you perceive it to be that matters. So if this is true; why don’t we condition ourselves to look for the best in a situation rather than the worst? It’s like worrying – I know people who worry about everything because they think by doing so they are less likely to be disappointed and upset when it does go wrong and they get a nice surprise if it doesn’t. But this means you have all the pain of worry and distress and then an outcome which you might or might not be right about anyway. Why not instead, NOT worry and then you’ll get the same outcome anyway but without the stress and pain of worrying about it beforehand?

Another way to look at it; if you think the worst will happen, how hard will you try to avert that outcome? Why try to avoid the inevitable? It’s like braking to avoid a collision when driving your car: do you think ‘there’s no point’ or ‘hit the brakes to save yourself being hurt?’ of course you brake, it’s natural to try to survive, it’s a physical response that’s built into us. Yet in life we create these scenario’s which are almost infantile in their nonsensical simplicity, that if we expect the worst, then we won’t be disappointed. But this is no way to live your life – this is just pain and hurt – no wonder so many people walk around looking miserable and carrying pained expressions, it’s become their defence mechanism for dealing with life.

For me, I was that way, sometimes at least – I used these same strategies, like don’t ask the girl out because she might say no and that would hurt my feelings, or don’t compete in that game because if I lose I will beat myself up too much about it. I decided instead on two things;

1. expect the best from every situation
2. care less if I don’t get it

This makes life so much easier. In fact, I know that if I don’t get something I really want that I might hurt for an hour or so, but after that I’ll turn the thing around and see a new opportunity instead. Many of the things I have really wanted in life that I didn’t get turned out to be blessings in disguise. So now if I don’t get what I want I think to myself ‘well, something better is probably lined up for me instead’.

Another way to look at it is to consider the worst thing that happened to you, at least at the time, and consider how you feel or felt two weeks later. It’s over and gone and its importance is so much less so why put all the worry into it in the first place?

For me, I’m going to expect the best from every situation – not, what if it goes wrong, but what if it goes right? And if I don’t get what I want I expect, then I expect that something better will come along shortly. I decided to think that life has good things in store for me and sometimes I can’t always see what that is, and that’s why I will get disappointed if I miss out, but when I look back, it will be for the best, in the longer term, that I didn’t get it.

So, try it, – invoke the law of expectation in its most positive form – expect the best and take action toward it like it’s bound to happen. If you don’t get it, think to yourself, great, something better is on its way’. This way you can’t lose, either way you get what you want.

‘You only get what you confidently expect’ so expect the best and that is what you’ll get.

Have a great day, have an AEGIS day

The post What do you expect? appeared first on AEGIS Martial Arts.

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