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Coaching for Children

Protecting Children from Sexual Abuse

In light of the recent Penn State scandal, many individuals are wondering how such a well-known, trusted public figure could have gone undetected for so long while preying on young children. Moreover, countless parents, in the midst of shock and anger, may be wondering if there were warning signs that might have indicated something was not right.

Unfortunately, the majority of children who experience sexual abuse, more than 90 percent, are familiar with and trust their abusers. Still not all sexual predators fit the preconceived profile that many individuals might expect. Many of the most serious predators work in trusted positions within churches, schools and athletic organizations. This makes it much more difficult to teach children how to avoid the dangerous situations in which they might be victimized.

The first line of defense for children is to explain things that would be considered inappropriate behavior in terms they can understand. Encourage them to speak privately with a parent or other adult when something or someone has made them feel uncomfortable in any way. Children are naturally very trusting and desire approval from the teachers, coaches, clergy, and other people in their lives. Therefore, it is understandable that they might remain silent about a someone whom they think they can trust. But if they understand that certain things are not okay, no matter who the aggressor is and that they will not be blamed, judged or punished for speaking up, they are more likely to confide in someone about such a situation.

However, this does not mean that children are solely responsible for alerting parents of a potential threat. In order to protect children, parents, as well as other members of the community, must be more vigilant and act on instincts. While it is important not to falsely accuse an individual without justifiable evidence, genuine concerns should always be investigated, regardless of someone’s personality, lifestyle or position in the community.

As a society, we tend to look away rather than confront someone or something that seems immoral or unethical, simply because we may not know all of the details and we do not want to jump to the wrong conclusion. People need to remember that apologies can always be made in the event an assumption is incorrect. However, if harm comes to a child simply because someone did not intervene on his behalf, it is too late for apologies. The scars left by sexual abuse run deep and never entirely go away. Traumatic events that happen during childhood will forever haunt the victim. So when an individual thinks

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a situation does not seem right, before he simply shrugs it off and assumes he is overreacting, he needs to ask himself, “Am I willing to take that chance?”

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Anti-Obesity Coaching for Children and Adolescents

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a startling 35.7% of adults and approximately 17% of youths aged 2-19 in the U.S. are obese. Alarming in and of itself, this frightening epidemic is showing no signs of decreasing in the foreseeable future. While society is not helpless to curb this trend, it is crucial that each individual takes responsibility for his role in the escalation of this terrible plague. Still, in a culture that places more value on standardized testing than on physical fitness and nutrition education, there has been a severe lack of attention to this matter. However, recently government leaders have begun to take action in efforts to reverse this dangerous trend.

childhood obesityWhile it is important to have the support of school officials and policy makers, the most significant factor in changing these statistics remains in parental responsibility. Parents must encourage physical activity and incorporate healthy snacks and meals into children’s routines. To accomplish this, it will most likely be necessary for parents to re-evaluate their own habits, but leading by example may actually do more for the cause than any other action.

There are numerous ways for parents to get their children involved in healthier lifestyles.

Plan Outdoor Activities

Though everyone seems to be busier

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and have more obligations these days, there are usually one or two days out of the week when there is some available down time. Parents can use this time to plan family ball games, bicycle trips or simple nature walks. The activity is not as important as the idea of being active.

Healthy Dining

After a long day at work many parents resort to fast food as a quick way to solve the dinner conundrum. However, with a little planning, healthy meals can be just

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as quick and more cost effective. By making casseroles and soups ahead and freezing them for later, a nutritious home-cooked meal can be as close as the microwave.

Alternative Snacks

When left to their own devices, children will choose unhealthy, easily accessible foods to fill the gap between meals. This unhealthy snacking can be thwarted by having a selection of raw fruits and vegetables or nuts pre-packaged. A platter of carrot stick and fat-free dressing takes mere minutes to prepare and offers much more sustainability than a bag of greasy potato chips.

Monitor Electronics

This does not mean parents need to be the “internet police,” but setting guidelines about how long children can be on the internet, play video games or watch television helps them find healthier ways to spend their time. This can also be used as a reward system; for example if little Billy keeps his room clean all week, he may play his video games an additional 30 minutes on Saturday.

These are some creative ways to intervene in children’s lives and help them make healthy choices. The lessons learned early will remain through adulthood and help them lead longer, healthier lives. The gift of health is the greatest thing a parent can give a child.

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Anti-Bully Coaching

[ilink url=”https://www.mycoachmatch.com/coaching-children-to-cope-with-bullies/”]Coaching Children to Cope with Bullies[/ilink]

Parents typically hope to promote a healthy self-image for their children. Offering the encouragement, love and support. The last thing any parent wishes is for his child to feel insecure about himself. Therefore, parents try to spend quality time with children, meet physical needs and occasionally cater to special requests for toys, games or whatever may be trendy at the moment.

Yet, sometimes a child may lack something, emotionally, from his home environment. When this need cannot be fulfilled at home, the child may begin to seek it elsewhere. This is not always a bad thing. A child whose parents work long hours may request additional homework help from a teacher, since it is unlikely that he will be able to ask at home. In another scenario, a child who is moving because his father’s job is transferring the family to a new city may consult his guidance counselor about ways to stay in touch with schoolmates and teachers. These are perfectly acceptable ways for the child to cope with a problem.

Conversely, a child may wish to project his emotional strain onto someone else. Perhaps because he feels frustration in the midst of his parents’ divorce or because his mother grounded him for teasing his little sister. Sometimes the reason may simply be because the child feels threatened by another student’s talent in a specific academic area.

stop bullying kids with bullying coachingWhatever the reason, some children feel the need to prey on others. To some it may seem like harmless teasing, but bullying can lead to depression, destructive behavior, emotional outbursts, school attendance problems, difficulty concentrating, lower grades, and in some cases, suicide.

Faced with incessant torment, the first person a child will likely approach for help is a parent. However, many parents feel helpless, not knowing what to do or where to go for help. The instinctive reaction may be to take charge of the situation and contact the offending child’s parents. However, this action is often ineffective and may, in fact, make things worse. What’s more, the wrong reaction could result in more stress and anxiety for the bullied child, causing him not to reach out for help next time. Another logical solution is to speak with teachers, bus drivers and school officials about the problem. Yet, with so many children to supervise, it can be virtually impossible for school staff to manage this issue at all times.

So, what can be done to combat this serious issue?

In difficult situations, it is extremely beneficial to speak with someone who can suggest appropriate techniques for coping. That is why anti-bully coaches have recently become so popular. An anti-bully coach works to neutralize the root of the problem, by training children to be virtually bully proof. With

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a combination of role playing and counseling, the anti-bully coach teaches children and parents what steps to take to prevent the situation and how to react in the event that it does occur.

It may seem extreme to go to a complete stranger for help with such a personal problem. But rest assured that these experts have helped countless families. There is no shame in admitting that this problem requires an outsider’s perspective. Unfortunately, bullying is a problem many children and adolescents will face throughout their school years. Still, it does not have to result in tragic circumstances or rip families apart. There is help for children and their parents. No longer do children have to suffer needlessly in silence.