The fight against bullying is an ongoing topic in the martial arts community. Terrence Fernandez shares how martial arts helped him go from a bullying victim to Commonwealth Championships and successfully running 6 martial arts schools.
.IN THIS EPISODE, YOU WILL LEARN:
How martial arts can help kids deal with bullying.
The anti-bullying efforts in martial arts schools.
The psychological and societal effects of bullying.
Martial arts vs. team sports.
The skills that martial arts teach you.
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I've been pushed around and grabbed before, but I never did anything. This was the first time I stopped and fought back. So it got to the point where I was in front of the canteen and I got put against the wall and exchanges happened and I don't know any boxing, so pretty much got bashed a bit first. And then I responded with a roundhouse kick to the head. And after that, the fight stopped. The person I was fighting, after the roundhouse kick to the head, stopped. And it was just a big shock, it was a shock to everyone around me, but more importantly, it was a shock to me. It was a shock to me that I finally overcame that choking feeling.
GEORGE: Good day, this is George Fourie and welcome to another Martial Arts Media business podcast. So I have a guest with me today, Terrence Fernandez and I was at The Main Event in Sydney, just a couple of weeks back and we sparked this conversation about the topic of bullying. And something I really wanted to speak to Terrence about, something he’s really passionate about, something he went through as a child, but then there's also things that I don't want to neglect, as a Martial Arts Media business podcast, that he's got six locations, just opened his first location internationally and opening another three next year.
So there's lots of value to this share on the business side, but we’re probably going to start more and talk about the bullying aspect, a topic that's always hot within the martial arts community. And, yeah, as always, we’re going to see where this conversation goes. So welcome to the show, Terrence.
TERRENCE: Yeah, thank you, thank you for having me.
GEORGE: Alright, awesome. So as always, let's just start from the beginning; a bit of background from you, who is Terrence?
TERRENCE: Yeah, I'm from Sydney Australia, and the sport that I do is Taekwondo. And my club is called Martial Arts Spirit, but basically, I was your average martial arts student, I was just trying to find a place to belong. And you know I tried that through group sports, like soccer and basketball and things like that, before I got enrolled into Taekwondo. And I didn’t quite find it in group sports I think, with group sports, there's a bit of pressure involved, and you're expected to perform, to achieve the goal of the team, whether it’s winning a match, or whatnot, winning the season.
And because I already lacked in confidence and I wasn’t really good at any skills or coordination, being put into that team environment, I felt like I was letting the team down. And through that, I experienced some bullying in the team as well. Remember, I was playing for a soccer team, and I didn't know anything about soccer. Don't know the rules, my family doesn't know anything about soccer, soccer was just running around a field, kicking a ball. And you know, I think I was probably about 7 or 8 and I still remember the Saturday game, when I was constantly offside and not knowing the rules.
The team were getting really angry with me, and their parents, the parents on the sidelines, were getting really frustrated with me, because I didn't know what I was doing and I started getting names. I was the only Asian person on the team. And it got to the point where I’d come to training and just really be outcasted and isolated and I used to get spat on by my own team…