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Tyler Jiu-Jitsu gym fights back against bullying

Free classes for National Bullying Prevention Month
Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 6:18 PM CDT
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - October is National Bullying Prevention Month and East Texas school counselors say there are many different definitions of bullying, with a power struggle at the forefront of each definition.

“Someone being targeted by another person, repeatedly, on purpose, and there’s a power struggle,” Arp ISD school counselor Lara Parker said. “One’s trying to have power over another.”

“An imbalance of power, oftentimes it’s an ongoing or a pattern,” lead counselor at Whitehouse High School Alex Clark said.

To combat bullying, Gracie Barra Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is offering free classes for the month of October.

“When a kid needs to do a technique, and they think that it’s hard because it is hard, and when they show that they can do it, then they feel better and prepare for their life,” Gracie Barra Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Head Instructor Dionathan Santos said. As much as they focus on the physical training, Santos said mental growth such as confidence and self-esteem is vital to the program. Santos said some students come in shy with their chin down, and leave with their chin up, confident.

Which Parker said confidence is key for students. “Confidence and being proud of yourself,” Parker said. “Holding your head up high, and being able to stand up for yourself is very important.”

Parent Tuan Vo goes to weekly classes with his two children and wife. This week, they even brought their friend during the free month to show what the program is all about. His son Matthew said throughout his time in class, he has gained more confidence. Vo said he even noticed his children eating more and being more disciplined in school.

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