Spectrum Skillz – Skill 3: Observing | Gentle East Martial Arts
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ACCESS OUR VIRTUAL SCHEDULE
& BOOK YOUR FREE VIRTUAL SESSION🗓️

Our Physical doors might be shut - but our DIGITAL DOORS are OPEN! Secure your spot & get started today with our FREE EXCLUSIVE online offer!

By opting into the web form above you are providing consent for Gentle East Martial Arts to send you periodic text messages. Standard rates may apply. You can reply HELP at anytime or learn more. You may opt-out anytime by replying STOP.
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I can’t explain just how amazing this place is! My daughter was born at just 23 weeks, 1lb. She just turned 3, and is doing well but had a long bumpy road. With said, she has some visual impairments, mild cerebral palsy, and severe anxiety issues. We are four classes in now, and although my daughter cries each time we get to the school, the instructors (every single one) ALWAYS treat her like their own and take their time with her. She comes out of class so happy and oh so proud of herself! They do not treat her differently because of her impairments, they are all patient and kind, and above all understanding. We are BEYOND pleased with GEMA, and the staff to include the wonderful families we have met. Thank you GEMA for creating a better world for my daughter!

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An awesome martial arts school that truly cares.

Hillary Hogan reviewed Gentle East Martial Arts
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I have had a blast. I look forward to continuing to learn each form.

Sharon Takai reviewed Gentle East Martial Arts
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We love the instructors and family atmosphere! Thank you!

Kathryn Carson reviewed Gentle East Martial Arts
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I've tried a bunch of martial arts over the years, but it wasn't until I got to Gentle East that I realized that the art itself doesn't matter so much--it's the attitude of its practitioners. These people aren't learning and teaching how to kill, but how to live. How to live despite trauma and illness, and to keep practicing their art even if it's just in their hearts. The tenets are courtesy, integrity, perseverance, self-control, and indomitable spirit, and they mean every word. They teach the kids that other dojangs won't. Autistic, physically challenged, special needs, you name it. They're fully engaged with the messy business of life. A whole lot of families are glad that Master Barbara Robinson followed her vision. Ours is one.

Melody D. Choate reviewed Gentle East Martial Arts
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Love, love, love this place! The staff is incredibly kind and supportive, and the family atmosphere is palpable the moment you walk in the door! I am so impressed with the work being done with autism spectrum kids, as well as other kids with physical challenges. No one is made to feel like they don't belong here! I even joined the mommy class and my toddlers are allowed to run around us while we work out. I've lost a few pounds, and gained some amazing (non-judgemental) mom-friends! An oasis of kindness and support in the middle of what is often a 'keep up with the Jones's " area of town.

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Spectrum Skillz – Skill 3: Observing

Gentle East Martial Arts in Midlothian, Virginia is proud to announce that we have added Spectrum Skillz to our class offerings! This program was designed to target children ages 7 and up who are on the autism spectrum. The program introduces specialized skill-based training for children who have limited physical, intellectual, social, and emotional abilities. With that said, more emphasis is placed on building fundamental skills training with a strategic balance of Martial Arts.

The Spectrum Skillz Ninja represents the ability of martial artists who are on the autism spectrum to achieve success

 

By understanding the needs of these children, we have selected 8 skills that make up the Spectrum SKILLZ Program.  The third skill we cover is Observing.  Observing is a skill that kids on the spectrum struggle with. If you’ve ever worked with someone on the autism spectrum, then you understand exactly what I mean, because you can see them constantly looking around even though they’re supposed to be watching you.

So, it’s our job in this program to help them learn how to observe the things in their actions that they should or shouldn’t be doing. We break observation down into four main parts

  • Observing Our Partners – When we do this we’re going to be having them working with another individual, it can be a teammate even an instructor, and having them do things with that partner while staying focused on that partner so that way they can pick up the things that both the student and their partner may be doing right and the things that they could be doing wrong.
  • Observing Basics – This is something that Spectrum Skillz kids get to do with an instructor. The student’s goal will be to get to identify different basic techniques that are being demonstrated. This is going to help build the student’s active memory because they’re going to start seeing things going on, and challenging their brain to help them remember exactly what the move is called. This may be difficult at first with all the different moves that they have to remember, being able to tell which one is which and being able to observe it in order to name it.
  • Observing in Groups – Group observation is one of the biggest challenges for this skill because now we’re asking them to take their eyes and instead of just watching one person like in a one-to-one partnership, we want them to be able to watch multiple people at a time. This is so that they can start to see the differences and the similarities that can be shared between others.  This is going to be a challenge for them, but also it’s going to help them boost their observation skills
  • Self Observation – This one is going to be an enjoyable one because this is going to be where they’re going to get to demonstrate moves themselves and be able to detail the things that they think that they’re doing well or enhance the things that they think they may have missed.

When we help the kids put all of these techniques together, they’re going to start to take their focus up to the highest level possible.  With our spectrum kids, it’s our goal to keep setting them up for success during class, but it’s also our job to maintain a high energy and fun format so that they’re excited and they want to stay focused.

As you can see we take Martial Arts training to a whole new level! Be sure to check our blog for articles on the other seven spectrum skills.

 

Ready to get started?  Click here to book your child’s free 1-on-1 session with one of our instructors.