Monday, December 03, 2007

Toughening Up A Kid or Abusing It?

As most of you know, my little Ninja and I have been taking karate for almost two years. I love the discipline and self control that is extolled by the Senseis and expected of the students (karate-ka). I understand the need to toughen kids up --especially in this day and age of the no-dodgeball or tag playing pussification of our youth. But, IMO, this Sensei went too far...

"...Police say Bateman was teaching her students toughness, challenging them to take as many kicks as possible.

"Some students may have taken ten kicks, and some students may have taken fifty kicks. And two actually took over 200 kicks," says Debbie George, of the Suffolk Police Department.

One student, an 11-year-old, was injured. George says "he did suffer some internal injuries and possibly a fractured rib."

Bateman turned herself in last Tuesday on a Felony charge of Child Endangerment. But a conversation with Susan Bateman's brother sheds a different light on the karate instructor.

"I think everybody's jumping the gun," warns Charlie Walston, Bateman's younger brother.

Walston says the student could've stopped the kicking at any point. The student was in a push up position and Bateman would kick the student between the stomach and ribs 25 times before asking if the student wanted to stop. If the student said he would like to continue, Bateman would then switch to the other side for 25 more kicks before asking once again.

Walston says the student was trying to break a record set by a different student in the Hampton studio when he kept going for some 200 kicks..." (source)

We get hit in the stomach while doing crunches and kicked in the hamstrings while in a horsestance...but over 200 times...on a kid? I would hope the Sensei would know better regardless of whether the boy told her to stop. She's a third degree Black Belt and the adult and should know better...

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