Martial arts instructor Elliot Stone was at Scotts Valley High School nearly all day Tuesday showing P.E. students how to defend themselves if they are ever attacked, and even better, how to avoid the situation all together.
From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., just about every student at the school got a little instruction on punching, kicking and grappling, as well as using body language and good common sense to avoid confrontation. It was certainly a change from the typical P.E. class, but one that the school’s P.E. instructors said was good.
“It’s great skills for them to learn; it teaches body awareness and self-defense, and not only to protect yourself to prevent yourself from getting into bad situations,” said P.E. teacher and wrestling coach Jared Norman.
“It’s good to have something different,” said his colleague Lou Russo. “All the classes seem to be having a good time today.”
Stone, who owns Elite Martial Arts Academy on Mount Herman Road, said he was showing the kids these skills as a public service.
“I’m just showing them some things that could improve their chances — today — if they were attacked,” he said. “Basically just strengthening their default, natural defensive instincts.”
Stone said it was good instruction for both boys and girls, because while girls might seem vulnerable, guys tend to more often put themselves in danger of conflict.
Ninth-grader Daniel Kim said he had no plans to use anything he learned Tuesday, but he was happy to learn.
“We learned fighting tactics, like if you get bullied. I’ll know what to do if I’m getting attacked by someone,” he said.