Special importance for self-defence is understanding the normal response to extreme fear or surprise. This happens to everyone, but with training we can overcome these physiological responses faster and respond appropriately.
- We freeze – like a deer in headlights, or muscles just tense and we cannot move. This is not good when someone is running at us with a baseball bat.
- We get tunnel vision– we temporarily lose our peripheral vision and can only focus on what is directly in front of us. This is not good when there are multiple attackers.
- Our ears fill with blood – we temporarily lose the ability to hear, which means we cannot hear danger coming.
The entire purpose of EMA Self-Defence training is to wean the flinch response and overcome the fight/flight to respond quicker.
This is why self-defence day is not a class to be joking around in since we are trying to emulate the fear response when we are with
our training partners.
Helping children manage their fears is essential for their emotional well- being and development. Here are five simple ways children can learn to cope with their fears:
- Talk About It: Encourage open communication with your child. Let them express their fears and feelings without judgment. Listen attentively and validate their emotions. This helps them feel understood and less alone in dealing with their fears.
- Provide Reassurance: Reassure your child that it is normal to have fears and that you are there to protect and support them. Remind them of times they have faced their fears and succeeded. Emphasize that fear is a feeling they can overcome.
- Educate and Empower: Sometimes, fears arise from not understanding something. Provide age-appropriate information about what they fear. Books, videos, or visits to child-friendly educational sites can help demystify certain fears, like the dark or thunderstorms. Knowledge often reduces anxiety.
- Use Relaxation Techniques: Teach your child simple relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing or visualization. These techniques can help them calm their nervous system when they are feeling anxious or scared. Practice these techniques together during calm moments.
- Gradual Exposure: For specific fears or phobias, consider gradual exposure. Start with small, manageable steps to face the fear. For example, if a child is afraid of dogs, start with looking at pictures of dogs, then observing dogs from a distance, and eventually meeting a friendly, well-behaved dog in a controlled setting.
– Written by Kumar