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Three million children miss school each month in the United States because they are afraid of being bullied.

On Sunday September 30th, students and instructors from the Rogers, Arkansas Sheep Dog M.A.T. Kids program traveled to Edmond, OK to meet and train with the creator of the Gracie Bullyproofing program, Rener Gracie. He was there for a few days teaching kids on how to better “bullyproof” themselves. “It’s a program that teaches kids physical and verbal self-defense techniques, so they don’t necessarily have to get into fights,” said Gracie. “Ultimately, it serves as a way to build confidence and certainty within, self-confidence, so that a child can assert themselves verbally to the bully.” The program is geared for children ages 5 to 13 and does not promote violence, in fact, the bully is never physically harmed in any way by the techniques, only neutralized. “What we teach the kids is to learn physical self-defense techniques so they can be 100 percent certain should retaliation take place, you’re not going to get hurt,” he said. “Once they are sure of that physical safety, then the verbal assertiveness becomes easy.”

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Sheep Dog MAT Kids and
Instructors with Rener Gracie

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Bullyproof class with Rener Gracie in Edmond, OK

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Hosted by Redline Gracie Jiu-Jitsu of Edmond, OK the seminar was a lot of fun for the kids and adults. Our Sheep Dog M.A.T. Kids showed great determination with their intensity and their thirst for knowledge. Members had the opportunity to share the Sheep Dog Impact Assistance story, and talk about our M.A.T. Kids program and our efforts to combat bullying.

“Everyone walked away with more confidence, knowledge, and the desire to learn more. But the best part was that our Sheep Dog family just got bigger!” said John Pope, Training Director for Sheep Dog IA, and the founder of the Sheep Dog M.A.T. Kids program.