Ju­nior Rene­gades learn to stand up against bul­lies in the play­ground

Pilbara News - - Sport - Ali­cia Per­era

Mixed mar­tial arts fit­ness club Rene­gade Kar­ratha cel­e­brated the hard work of its young stu­dents, who were in train­ing to be “su­per­heroes in the play­ground”, at a grad­ing day last Thurs­day.

About 30 chil­dren in the Ju­nior Rene­gades and Anti-Bul­ly­ing pro­grams were put through their paces for as­sess­ment by adult Rene­gade in­struc­tors to cap off their weekly train­ing ses­sions for this year.

Rene­gade co-owner Camerin Coles said the chil­dren’s pro­grams in the Brazil­ian Jiu Jitsu-fo­cused school had grown fast since they opened at the be­gin­ning of the year, which he at­trib­uted to good word of mouth and par­ents see­ing the re­sults.

He said the grad­ing day was a chance to cel­e­brate how far stu­dents had come. “The sig­nif­i­cance of to­day is not so much the kids demon­strat­ing their tech­niques, but the main thing is the con­fi­dence to come in and have a go,” he said.

“The kids aren’t go­ing to do the tech­niques per­fectly, but they don’t have to. As long as they can demon­strate that they re­ally want to have a go, that’s all we’re look­ing for.

“(That) and show­ing off the hard work.” Also in­volved on the day was a visit from City of Kar­ratha Mayor Peter Long and a gen­eral dis­cus­sion of re­spon­si­bil­ity and stand­ing up for your­self and oth­ers as keys to be­ing su­per­heroes in the play­ground.

Mr Coles said they had in­tro­duced the Anti-Bul­ly­ing pro­gram this term to help em­power young peo­ple against play­ground in­tim­i­da­tion us­ing ba­sic self-de­fence.

“One of the big­gest things we want to put into this pro­gram is just to build con­fi­dence back into kids and stop them from be­ing vic­tims,” he said.

“If you’re not con­fi­dent in the play­ground, a bully will pick on you. If you show that con­fi­dence, then they’re go­ing to leave you alone.

“And if they do come to pick on you, we show them the tech­niques on how to stop that as well … so these kids can step up.”

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