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From focus and goal-setting to self-discipline and self-respect, our Lessons in Mindfulness equip our young students to face life’s ever-changing challenges.
My name is Jerry Figgiani and I am the owner and principal instructor at East Coast Black Belt Academy. Since 1990, I have been sharing my unique approach to children’s martial arts education with the community. Since 1990, we've delivered practical, effective, and life-transforming skills to children, youth, and teens of the Middle Island area. In 2012, I was awarded the National Police Athletic League Mentor Award which recognized, on a national level, my Childhood Character Development Program. This Program integrates the values of our karate program with our student’s everyday lives. While this honor was humbling, to say the least, it pales in comparison to the look on a parent’s face when they share stories of their child’s elevated self-confidence; ability to ward off a bully, stay focused on a task, or set and achieve their goals. I want every parent to know how earnestly I value this sacred trust, that I feel so privileged to have. Our unique karate program is designed to incorporate your child’s ability to take the lessons of discipline, and respect for themselves and others, along with focus and self-confidence, out of the karate school, and into their everyday lives. By demonstrating these dynamic and constructive leadership skills not only at karate but also at home and in school, students and parents alike will experience the amazing transformation, both mentally and physically, that East Coast Black Belt Academy has become known for. Simply stated, my philosophy is that the best way for a student to demonstrate their karate skills is to be respectful and responsible, every day both inside the karate school and out. As a published author and featured columnist in Masters Magazine, I have published a body of work that focuses on guiding students of all ages through the immense benefits of enhanced character development through the study of Okinawan Martial Arts. My Mental Martial Arts program has received critical acclaim and has produced so many success stories. I encourage parents to watch this amazing process unfold from the comfort of our spacious, open, and accessible viewing area. From that unique vantage point, you will see first-hand as your child transitions into a more focused, confident, and disciplined individual. I promise you that the transformation will be amazing!
In creating our Children’s Karate Program, we developed a delicate balance between fun and clear structure that enables our young students to succeed, while keeping them excited about coming to class. Our amazing, patient instructors love to work with children, and they understand the various challenges kids this age face in wanting to become self-reliant, while also needing to develop self-discipline. To accomplish this, we establish clear rules of proper behavior in class and we encourage the same good behavior at home and in school.
In many conventional sports, there are always some children who do very well and others who struggle. We have a slogan, “there are no bench warmers in our school.” Every child excels in this program, developing their confidence in the process so that they will be able to deal with any situation life presents to them. Our objective is to help each and every child grow in a positive manner while equipping them with abilities that will help them in school, at home, on the playground, and of course, in situations where they have to stand up for themselves. Our ultimate goal is to help you raise children that are unstoppable.
One of the best things about martial arts is that it delivers an elite level of physical fitness while kids are having fun. Most of the time, they don't even realize they're exercising. But make no mistake, kids who take martial arts are some of the most well-conditioned children around. Martial arts provide cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, flexibility, agility, and balance. There are really no other sports or activities that can compare. Childhood obesity is at epidemic levels today. We work with students who need to lose weight to help them break unhealthy habits, and set realistic fitness goals. The lessons children learn will follow them into adulthood, setting them up for a lifetime of good health and a positive self-image.
At East Coast Black Belt Academy, we do not take belt promotion lightly. We do everything in our power to teach students to be patient, determined, and goal-oriented, so when they do earn their belts, they feel a great sense of accomplishment that really boosts their confidence and self-esteem. And unlike sports or other activities where only some kids score the points or get the medals, every student at ECBBA gets to experience the personal reward of advancing from one level to the next. Our ultimate aim is to help our students learn not only excellent martial arts skills, but also to set and achieve goals, be well-behaved, and work hard in everything they do.
Whether You Child Is Being Bullied, Or Bullying Others
Bullying hurts. It causes psychological and emotional scars that can last a lifetime. Regardless of whether your child is the victim of bullying, or the one doing it, low self-esteem is usually the source, and will eventually lead to poor school performance, depression, and labeling. East Coast Black Belt Academy has the solution. Our program builds physical, mental, and emotional strength, while our students learn both self-respect and respect for others. Children who believe in themselves not only make poor targets for bullies, they learn to stand up and "find their voice." At the same time, children who were inclined towards bullying learn they don't need to intimidate others to feel self-worth. Many parents worry that martial arts may make their child more aggressive, but in reality, it's the exact opposite. Martial arts teaches children self-control. Our students learn to stand up for themselves and their principles and to respond to bullying in the most effective manner, with physical force being the last resort. The advantage of the techniques we teach is that they are totally non-violent, and are only applied in response to physical aggression, ensuring that they are never used for the wrong reason. Most importantly, our students learn they can walk away from trouble with courage and authority.
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