The statistics are alarming: one in six 6th-10th graders are victims of bullying each year, and three of every five 6th-9th grade boys who bully are convicted of a crime by age 24. Since only a quarter of known victims report being bullied, the numbers are thought to be much higher. Even if your child has yet to experience violence they certainly know what everyday conflict is like. You may be the only one who can put Conflict Done Well within their easy reach and douse the fire of conflict before it escalates.
Peace Practices emerged from the world of aikido, a martial art with an innovative premise. Aikido is based on evidence that the cycle of violence can be broken by redirecting the momentum, rather than returning the force of an attack. Continuing the process of innovation, both physical and verbal self-defense results improve through integration of re-directive language with aikido's traditional techniques. These redirections prepare students to calm their natural fears and shift the unhelpful habits that are responsible for escalating conflict.
Ongoing learning allows students to process rather than avoid conflict. It arms them with strategies and tactics rather than weapons, so that they can mindfully manage challenges. Conflict is natural and inevitable, but violence is not. Peace is possible; it just takes practice.
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Brandon Sensei is a 5th degree blackbelt in aikido and head instructor of Free Aiki Dojo and Golden Bears Aikido at UC Berkeley. His students learn traditional aikido techniques paired with language that brings about the embodiment of aiki principles. His conflict facilitation method, called Martial Nonviolence, is the heart of the Peace Practices curriculum being practiced around the world by students from four to 74 years of age. He resides in Richmond, CA with his wife and two children.
Please contact us to learn what we can offer your community: firstname.lastname@example.org
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