Not Just Martial Arts

Olivia Roney Spahn, CEO and founder of Crouching Tigers, with two of her students. (submitted photo)

Olivia Roney Spahn, CEO and founder of Crouching Tigers, with two of her students. (submitted photo)

By Holly Demaree

Children are given the opportunity to learn martial arts and life lessons at the same time with the Crouching Tigers mobile program. Classes are held at different child care centers, after school programs and elementary schools around Fishers and have the main focus of teaching children, ages two to seven, how to build self confidence.

“We really started as a traditional martial arts company, but now we are using martial arts to teach them important things like life skills and listening to stories about how to become more resilient,” said Olivia Roney Spahn, CEO and Founder of Crouching Tigers.

Crouching Tigers is still considered a martial arts company, but it uses martial arts to incorporate more life lessons within the curriculum. Every class integrates physical fitness and a life lesson. This semester students at Crouching Tigers are learning about integrity and forgiveness.

“The children learn the definition of each life lesson and how they can be applied in their own lives,” Spahn said.

Some parents have expressed concerns about teaching their children martial arts because they already have issues with keeping their child from kicking and punching.

“That is what we are here for,” Spahn said. “We take those kids who have that kind of aggression and issues; they are punching and kicking in class, hurting their family members and we give them an outlet for all of that energy and aggression that they have.”

Spahn said Crouching Tigers’s biggest asset is helping children build their self-confidence. Spahn, who teaches some of the courses, said that is one of the biggest changes she sees in her students.

“We had an elementary student a couple of years ago that was making himself puke everyday so he did not have to go to school,” Spahn said. “He was being bullied so much it was an awful situation but it just came down to that he did not have any self confidence.”

After a few months of learning about confidence and resilience at Crouching Tigers the student was no longer a target of bullying, Spahn said.

Spahn said Crouching Tigers is looking toward offering classes to the public in Fishers. This would help make the program more accessible so parents could drive their children to the class.

The schools in Fishers that are currently offering Crouching Tiger classes are Community Montessori, Goddard School Fishers 2 and Rainbow Childcare of Fishers.

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