The Power of Flexible Thinking

Welcome to the first week of October!  Each month, we explore a new value, known to the kids as their “Superpowers” and we tie it in with a natural element.  This month is Water month! I think it’s perfect for this exact time of year. Many people, kids and adults, are beginning new activities this time of year, and going through the process of building a good group of friends around them.  At least, that is the hope we have for ourselves and our children.

Martial arts training helps us create better connections with people in so many ways.  First off, the classes in themselves are a great way to meet others and get to know them over a common interest.  But beyond that, the skills we learn in the dojo help us refine ourselves and clear away the things we may do that prevent us from having those great friendships we would like.

One of the things that can really get the best of us with our friends is our temper.  It is SO easy to want to retaliate if we feel the other person “started it” or is in the wrong.  But retaliation doesn’t really help us feel happy and fulfilled with our lives in the long run.

I think we retaliate because we are holding onto what we wanted that interaction to be like, or how we were hoping that other person would behave.  It’s like a misguided way to try to correct and get things back on track. After all, if we really didn’t care, we’d just let it go. That’s why our theme this week is “Flexible Thinking.”  We’re working on that important ability to adapt in the moment and allow our perspective to shift as things around us change or we learn more about them. A great mantra for this concept comes from Thomas Edison, who said, “Just because something doesn’t do what you planned it to do doesn’t mean it’s useless.”

That negative interaction you had may actually benefit you in some way down the road.  Maybe it helped you and your friend confront an issue that would have festered and ruined the relationship.  Maybe it finally let you see a side of that person you had been trying to ignore and let you move on.

Martial arts training helps us understand that being flexible is actually the best way to get what we need.  Being flexible is very different from being a pushover. As we learn in martial arts, we always keep our structure.  But we also learn to never stop moving.  We only hold our structure in a static position when we are learning how to do it.  Once we know it is strong, we would never be still while facing an opponent – we are always walking, moving, flowing to where we need to be, all the while staying in a solid, protected shape.

Isn’t this the exact balance we need to maintain as we dance through life?  It is so important to be solid within yourself, but equally important to remain fluid and flexible.  

In our Leadership Lesson this week, the kids will be learning and practicing what to do when someone is picking on you.  The kids will be introduced to the concept in our martial arts story and get extra chance to role play it during After School this week.

Our Martial Arts Techniques of the Week are…
Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri
Ukemi Zenpo Kaiten Zenpo Ukemi
Technique 1 Shuto and Sokuyaku Ken from Kamae Set 1
Technique 2 Jodan Uke Drills Zenpo Taisabaki
Technique 3 Sui no Kata

Kasumi Club: Shi Sai – “Finger Break” and Review

For Parkour This Week..

Kids will practice believing in their parkour abilities and visualizing their moves to help speed learning.  Specifically, Sensei Diego will be working with students on Cartwheels, Basic Parkour-Style Rolls, and Tornado Kicks.

In Yoga This Week..

Through challenging poses we are cultivating Patience, Flexibility, and Determination.  Patience we need as we’re growing. Flexibility we need to to work with wherever we are.  And Determination is vital to succeed in what we dream for ourselves. Specifically, Sensei Mike will be guiding students through poses that challenge core strength and balance, plus some fun eyes-closed balance games to improve instinctual coordination.

 

Thanks for reading!  See you in the dojo,

Sensei Nesta

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