Helping Students Reach Their Potential by Instructor Ma
For your students to get the most out of their Martial Arts Training, they must want to give their all during every class. Remember: we must encourage each student to be his or her best and to reach their potential with realistic goals and lots of encouragement. Here are several techniques and principles that will help you get the most from your students.
Public Praise Private Reprimand. If you goal is to ruin someone’s day and lower their self-image, the fastest way to do that is to publicly humiliate them. Any kind of reprimand or disciplinary action should be given quietly and privately, away from the attention of others. It is said “Love the sinner, hate the sin.” Reprimand the student’s actions, not the students personally.
Tell them what you want them to do, not what you do not want them to do. It is impossible to concentrate on the negative of an idea. If I tell a baseball player not to get out, the first thing he thinks about is getting out; he thinks about not doing it second. It would be much more valuable to tell him to hit the ball. “Pay attention” could be replaced with “are you with me” or “does that make sense”. By the same token, instead of telling students what they WON’T get if they mess up, tell them what they WILL get if they behave. “If you are not sitting straight, you won’t get a turn,” can be replaced with “as long as you sit straight, you will be sure to get a turn.”
Set realistic goals, followed constant feedback. Students need to have a clear image of where they are going. It is important that each student sets specific goals. The instructor’s job is to help set these goals. Remember, each student has different strengths and weaknesses that should be considered. Feedback is the breakfast of champions. Once a goal has been set, constant feedback should be given to help keep each student on target.
About the author: Xiao Ma is a 3rd Degree Black Belt in the Korean self-defense art of Hapkido and a 2nd Dan in Traditional Taekwondo. She is a professional sports and fitness model and full time Nursing student. She is the Language, Culture and Leadership Development Teacher for the American Dragon Korean Martial Arts Academies and can be reached at www.AmericanDragonKoreanMartialArts.com