Martial arts the focus of free anti-bully seminar - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Martial arts the focus of free anti-bully seminar

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AMARILLO - Self-confidence is the key to stop bullying according to a local fitness club.

Mixed martial arts is designed to help not only the victims of bullying but the bullies themselves. It's an option many victims of bullying turn to and it's not just about learning to fight.

"Better fitness, better self-defense, and it's helped me become a better person and better discipline," said one MMA student.

But mixed martial arts doesn't only benefit those who get picked on.

" We see two different sides," said Elite MMA & Fitness Owner and Head Coach Jimmy Boyd. "Sometimes we get the bullies and sometimes we get the victims."

Boyd started Elite Fitness about two years ago and he says he's seen the bullied and the bullies grow and mature while taking his classes. Confidence is key, for those insecure enough to pick on others, and those who fall victim to it.

"A lot of people will put their kids in here for discipline reasons and it's good because we provide a lot of structure and discipline to those kids and a lot of self-confidence. Which most people don't realize that a lot of bullies are actually insecure and that's the reason why they bully," said Boyd.

Boyd says classes for all age groups are becoming increasingly popular, even the class full of four and five-year-olds.

Parents of those future ninjas say it's never too early to start boosting your child's self confidence.

"If your children is walking around with confidence, confidence that they're not going to get pushed around, bullies are going to go look for someone else," said Katy Sewell who has a four-year-old son in a class.

Boxing, jui jitsu, muay thai, and wrestling are just a few of the sports that keep a child's head held high and the bullies looking the other way.

Elite MMA & Fitness is offering a free anti-bully seminar Sunday, January 27. Kids ages four to 18 can get a taste of martial arts while learning how to deal with bullies. The Amarillo Bulls players will also be there to help coach.