Taking a break from Martial Arts

Lisa

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My daughter has recently returned to Martial Arts after a few months off. In the fall time she decided that she wanted the opportunity to try different things and put more emphasis on her shooting training. Recently she returned to her old school and has truly been enjoying her return.

Throughout her absence her coach kept in close contact with her, talking to her about MA, staying interested in her other activities and she even would go to a few classes and watch the training. It was really good for her to keep in contact with her fellow classmates and through her coaches encouragement and the other students she decided on her own terms to rejoin classes.

My question is has anyone else had students that have left to persue other things and have they rejoined your classes? Do you make an effort to keep in contact with them to encourage their return? If so, how?
 

terryl965

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Lisa it does happen when we have student leave to try other option we alway stay in touch just so they can see that we really care about them.
terry
 

Flying Crane

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I have kept in touch with past instructors, and they have always welcomed me back. Keep in touch, stay on good terms, show respect, that is the key.
 

bluemtn

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It's happened to me (I'm a student). I was studying under my old instructor for a number of years, then something came up, and I had to change location/ time. I still see one of his instructors fairly regularly, and it's nice to know that they want to know how I'm doing. I also ask how they're doing, and let them know of any belt tests. They might be coming to my next test- looking forward to that (not to show off, but to say hi).
 

IcemanSK

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In my situation, I teach kids in a community center situation. I teach my own TKD class & then help in an Okiniwan Karate class. My other duties at the Center include helping kids w/ their homework. (They're grade-school age.) I have kids who I help w/ homework & then 15 minutes later I help them w/ side kicks. If they choose not to train anymore, they still see me in the homework room. Some have gotten really nervous when they stop training that I won't like them or help them w/ their homework. I work hard & often to re-assure them that I like them as people & to stay active no matter what they decide to do. For some of these kids, they've not wanted to come to the Center at all over this fear. (And I'm a really nice guy:) ). I have said more than once that I don't care if (a given child) never takes class again. And that I like em anyway.

I think its important that kids hear that from instructors. They hear the pposite enough places in their lives.
 
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Lisa

Lisa

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IcemanSK said:
In my situation, I teach kids in a community center situation. I teach my own TKD class & then help in an Okiniwan Karate class. My other duties at the Center include helping kids w/ their homework. (They're grade-school age.) I have kids who I help w/ homework & then 15 minutes later I help them w/ side kicks. If they choose not to train anymore, they still see me in the homework room. Some have gotten really nervous when they stop training that I won't like them or help them w/ their homework. I work hard & often to re-assure them that I like them as people & to stay active no matter what they decide to do. For some of these kids, they've not wanted to come to the Center at all over this fear. (And I'm a really nice guy:) ). I have said more than once that I don't care if (a given child) never takes class again. And that I like em anyway.

I think its important that kids hear that from instructors. They hear the pposite enough places in their lives.

IcemanSK you bring up such a good point. Children really do need their instructors to understand that sometimes they need a break. My daughter's decision was not an easy one for her to make and took a long time to come to. Subsequently, when she started thinking about coming back she made the decision once and recinded it. It was important to her that her coach didn't seem to mind. He just simply told her that she was welcome back anytime and when she was ready, the class would be there for her. His attitude not changing towards her because of the decisions she made was what, I think, made all the difference inthe world to her. It made her feel safe and comfortable with her relationship with him and she knew it wouldn't change, even if she was not an active member of his school.
 

Gemini

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We've had students leave because of extenuating circumstances that have returned. They are however. few and far between. Usually when they leave, they stay gone regardless of the reason. As far as staying in touch, we most certainly do. The comaraderie never seems to leave even if they do.
 

Kacey

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One of my students left for nearly 2 years and then came back and earned his black belt; 2 years later, he's still here.

A couple in my instructor's class who left when their first child was too old to be happy in the portable chair during class just came back after 10 years; she's tested from high blue belt to high red belt, their 2 kids are low and high gold belts, and he's still a III Dan (takes a little longer to work back up to that one).

But it's pretty rare - other students have come back every once in a while, tried a class or a seminar, and then vanished again. One man I know has done this at least 3 times... but he's always welcomed when he comes.
 

Fight with attitude

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I took a break from my dojo because well...I'm a broke student. Also because of me moving the travel time to get to the dojo would take a very long time.

I never wanted to give up MA so I started searching for other schools closer to me. My roomate is friends with a BB so when we want to grapple or do stand up fighting we can go to his house and roll on his mats, which is awesome because sometimes it feels like I'm getting private lesson from a BB for free :D
 

MJS

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Lisa said:
My daughter has recently returned to Martial Arts after a few months off. In the fall time she decided that she wanted the opportunity to try different things and put more emphasis on her shooting training. Recently she returned to her old school and has truly been enjoying her return.

Throughout her absence her coach kept in close contact with her, talking to her about MA, staying interested in her other activities and she even would go to a few classes and watch the training. It was really good for her to keep in contact with her fellow classmates and through her coaches encouragement and the other students she decided on her own terms to rejoin classes.

My question is has anyone else had students that have left to persue other things and have they rejoined your classes? Do you make an effort to keep in contact with them to encourage their return? If so, how?

Students will certainly come and go. Many times, especially during the Summer months, a decline in enrollment will happen. Sports are also at times, pose a conflict. IMHO, I feel that its never a good idea to force someone to do something, or make them pick between the MA's or something else.

The door is always open for them to return and the majority of the time, they do. Its good that she decided for herself. She seems to enjoy her training, so I certainly wouldn't worry about her giving it up anytime soon.:)

Mike
 

tshadowchaser

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Many younger students do this for a ye then want to try "that" or "this other thing"
It could be dance. or swimmin. or football or whatever but many just want totry new stuff. Some return most don't
 

karatekid1975

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I took a break a few times. Death in the family, ect. But this time I wanna take a break. I had surgery a few months ago, and I just blew out my knee. I want to let my body heal. Plus I just got back into music (drums). Plus a few other issues. But every student needs a little break. I need the break (i had other breaks that were my choice, and ones that were out of my control). But I always come back roarin' to go ;)
 

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I once left for a year and a half..took up the guitar..lerned more about my photography....learned to pencil sketch....and then returned fresh!

it was the best thing I have ever done for my MA!
 

arnisador

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tshadowchaser said:
Many younger students do this for a ye then want to try "that" or "this other thing"
It could be dance. or swimmin. or football

Or, it could be another martial art! How many of us stuck with our first choice?
 

Eternal Beginner

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arnisador said:
Or, it could be another martial art! How many of us stuck with our first choice?

True! My son took a break but then found a different martial art and has really found his thing. My daughter, on the other hand, took a break but has returned to her original art and taken on new ones to supplement it.

The break both did them a lot of good and they are much happier for it now.
 

tshadowchaser

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I ahve taken a break from the arts a few times but it was "in my blood" so I always returned. If your daughter has the desire to learn she will return. The best thing you can do is not force her to return
 
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Lisa

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tshadowchaser said:
I ahve taken a break from the arts a few times but it was "in my blood" so I always returned. If your daughter has the desire to learn she will return. The best thing you can do is not force her to return

Very true. I didn't force the issue with her and she returned on her own in her own time. She fully admitted it was in her blood too, just wanted the opportunity to try other things. I think having an instructor that understood that, encouraged her to seek out new things, really helped. So did keeping in contact with everyone from her school. :)
 

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My daughter is at this point now. She's 16 years old and a 1st dan BB. She's been training in the MAs for over half of her life, but recently decided that she wanted to stop training and try other things. I was really disappointed because among other things she's my training partner, and this is one thing we have in common. In any event, I stand by her decision.

I realize that now, for her the MAs are not everything. She's a teenaged girl with other interests. I really hope that eventually she'll come back into the fold, but I'm not going to press it. She'll come back when she's ready.
 
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Lisa

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cali_tkdbruin said:
My daughter is at this point now. She's 16 years old and a 1st dan BB. She's been training in the MAs for over half of her life, but recently decided that she wanted to stop training and try other things. I was really disappointed because among other things she's my training partner, and this is one thing we have in common. In any event, I stand by her decision.

I realize that now, for her the MAs are not everything. She's a teenaged girl with other interests. I really hope that eventually she'll come back into the fold, but I'm not going to press it. She'll come back when she's ready.

My oldest daughter left Air Rifle Competitions last year. She too wanted to try different things. She continues with her MA but felt that if she wanted to get a job and maybe try other things that the two were just too demanding on her time. Much to my husband's heartbreak she left shooting but he and I stand by her decision as well. At that age they need to spread their wings and find other things in their lives if that is what they want. I honestly believe that perhaps in a few years she will come back to the sport. Maybe, maybe not. Either way it is up to her and we will welcome her back anytime. :)
 
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