Archive for the ‘Cyberbullying’ Category

People are sending me nasty texts….

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

If you are receiving nasty or threatening texts or calls on your mobile, tell an adult like a parent or teacher. They can help you put a stop to this. If it doesn’t stop you need to tell the police.

All UK mobile companies are used to dealing with nuisance calls and will have people you can call who can help you deal with this. In the meantime:

  • •Don’t reply to any nasty messages you receive.
  • Keep the messages that you have been sent so you can show someone.
  • Don’t answer any calls that are from a withheld number, or from a number 
    you don’t know.
  • Change your mobile number and only give your new number out to close friends.
  • If the problem is serious, tell the police or you can call us and we can help.

Mobile phone operators can’t bar a particular number from contacting another phone, but you can do this on some handsets. Check your phone’s user guide to see if yours can. They can only take action about the bully’s account such as blocking it, if the police are involved. Find out more about being bullied through your mobile.

Tring Martial Arts Academy – Keeping our Kids safe!

What is Sexting?

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

‘Sexting’ is when someone sends or is sent sexually explicit pictures or videos on their mobile phone. You might be encouraged to take pictures of yourself naked or film yourself doing things that you may not be happy about and send them to people. There may also be pressure on you to look at explicit messages that people have been sent, and to encourage other people to get involved.

It’s important to only do what you feel comfortable with. Remember that once you have sent a picture or video to someone else or put it up online, you have no control about where it will go and who will see it. Before sending anything, take a moment to think how you would feel if it ended up on YouTube or on Facebook. If you wouldn’t want anyone else to see it, don’t send it.

If you are worried about anything to do with sexting or being bullied anywhere, you can talk to ChildLine on 0800 1111. Get information and advice about sexting

Tring Martial Arts Academy – Keeping our kids safe

Self Defence is not a hobby…

Thursday, March 15th, 2012

                                                                                                                                                                                   Self Defence is not a hobby, it is a life skill.

I was prompted to write this blog today as a result of recent chats with a couple of parents who have just withdrawn their children from our martial arts classes so they can concentrate on other “hobbies”.  I’m very open to children getting a wide variety of experiences in different past times and sports but I think as parents we should also be looking to equip our kids with a very important life skill – Self Defence.

But what constitutes self defence, well most peoples immediate thought would be physical confrontations, using physical skills to defend yourself, but I believe that 90% of self defence is actually in the mind, attitude and how you conduct yourself.  Self Confidence is the biggest skill to defending yourself, knowing that you can defend yourself physically manifests within the martial artist as self confidence but the discipline and respect tied into formal training is what stops that person crossing the line and using their skills in anger.

I get very dissappointed when I hear Martial Arts and Self Defence being lumped into the bracket of hobbies along with Street Dance, Choir Practice, Golf, Rugby, Cricket etc.  Now I love all of these things, perhaps not Choir as I’m not religious and not street dance as I look like a Lizard standing up right receiving electric shocks when I dance.  But each of these “hobbies” have their place and are great for our kids, the level of choice kids have nowadays is amazing, certainly more than when I was growing up.

But I want to urge all parents, let them have their hobbies but insist they learn the life skill of self defence.  If I were in charge of the national curriculm, I would make it part of school life.  If your kids don’t want to go to school, do you let them stay at home or make them go??  You make them go.  But why?  Because school is important for their future, for their lives!

Self defence cannot be a hobby that can be picked up and dropped, it should be a life skill, it should be the one or two days per week that we as parents say no, your’re going to class, the other three days are for your hobbies.

Tring Martial Arts Academy – Keeping our kids safe!

Written by Christopher Allen, Chief Instructor

Cyber-Bullying – an insight

Monday, March 5th, 2012

Cyber bullying is classed as ‘bullying’ but because it happens online or via mobile phones, it can happen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. If you are being bullied, you can usually get away from it at home, but if you are being cyber bullied, you simply can’t escape it. This might leave you feeling unsafe even when you are at home. It can also be difficult to see who is doing the bullying. People are able to cyber bully people anonomously by hiding their computer’s IP address or their phone number. The number of people being cyber bullied may also be much bigger than other types of bullying.

How can someone be cyber-bullied? There are lots of ways in which someone can become a victim of cyber bullying.

Email Sending abusive or nasty emails to someone. The emails might also go to a group of people who then may join in the bullying. Sending emails containing inappropriate things and computer viruses is also considered bullying.

Instant Messaging or chatrooms Using instant messaging or chat rooms to send threatening or abusive messages to someone and asking others to join in.

Social Networking Sites Creating fake profiles in order to make fun of other people. Using them to leave abusive messages or impersonate someone.

Mobile Phones Sending abusive text messages, video or photo messages as well as sharing videos containing abusive content.

I’m being cyber-bullied – MAKE IT STOP!

Although cyber bullying can’t physically hurt you it can still make you feel bad and is still a form of emotional abuse. No one has the right you make you feel like this. It might seem that there is no way to make it stop, but there are things that you can do to prevent it from happening or make it stop.

• Talk to someone you trust like a parent or teacher. They can help you to sort it out. Or you can call ChildLine on 0800 1111 to speak to someone who can help you. 
• Don’t reply to any messages you receive, as this may encourage the bullies.
• Keep a copy of the abusive emails, texts or messages that you receive and when they were sent to you. 
• Never give out any personal details on the internet such as your real name, address, age or phone number. Even telling someone which school you go to can help them find out information about you. 
• Change your online nicknames or user ID to something different. 
• Block email addresses and/ or complain to host website.
• Report the abuse through the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP) website.

We are able to teach your children self-confidence through our martial art programmes see

More on Cyberbulling…

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012

Recently I was a victim of cyberbullying – yeah crazy I know but I received a malicious email via my website where this person called into question my abilities and suggested we meet up for a fight, obviously I have no intention of meeting up with “Mr Softy” the name he put on his email, but it made me wonder just how many people suffer from this type of bullying which is really abuse?

According to the BBC ( The charity Beatbullying’s study for Safer Internet Day spoke to 4,605 young people aged 11-16 across the UK.

28% said they’d been bullied over the internet or a mobile phone.

One in 13 said they had been threatened repeatedly – suggesting that as many as 350,000 secondary school pupils have experienced constant cyberbullying.

Victims found the cyberbullying left them wanting to avoid school, suffering from lower confidence, and living in fear of their safety.

But it’s not just children who are victims of cyberbullying – one in ten teachers say they’ve been harassed too. Beatbullying is calling for internet and mobile companies to do more to support children and young people.

Have you been bullied online?

The best thing to do if you’re being bullied, whether online or not, is to tell someone, report it to your parents or if you are a parent then consider contacting the Police, no one should have to suffer from this idiocy.


Friday, January 20th, 2012

Text\Video Messaging

  • Don’t reply to text messaging (also known as SMS or EMS) or video messaging (also known as MMS) that is abusive or obscene. Your mobile service provider e.g. Orange, T-Mobile, Vodaphone etc. should have a number that you can ring to report abusive messaging. Try their web sites for details.
  • Be careful who you give phone numbers to and don’t leave your mobile lying around when you are not there

Chatrooms or Instant Messaging (IM)

  • Do not give out personal information
  • Give yourself an alias that doesn’t give out anything about your age, gender or location
  • Don’t respond to abusive posting – ignore them or log off. If you don’t take time off and calm down you’ll end up writing something you’ll regret which will only make the situation worse
  • Think about what you write – it is very easy for people to get the wrong idea about what you write or how you write it


  • If you receive a nasty or abusive email (known as being flamed), don’t reply. If it’s from someone you think you know, like someone at school, they’ll want some kind of reaction, just like they would if they were standing in front of you and bullying you. Don’t give them the satisfaction of replying, and they’ll probably stop
  • If they don’t stop then you need to find out where the email is coming from. Using an email client like Outlook or Outlook Express, clicking the right mouse button over an email will reveal lots of details about where and who the email came from. You can then get your parents to contact the school or the service provider of the sender of the email
  • The email can also come from people that you don’t know, (known as spamming) – email addresses are fairly easy for companies to obtain on the internet, using software called email harvesters. They are also surprisingly easy for specialist computer programs to guess. Under no circumstances should you reply to these types of email, even if they have a Click here and stop receiving this email link – this will just confirm your email address as a real one. The individual sending it can then sell or pass it on to other people and you’ll be flooded with even more junk and abusive emails
  • You can delete the emails, but if the situation becomes serious, you should save them or print them off so that, if you do need to take action, you have some evidence
  • Learn more about your email program from the Help menu – you should be able to find details of how you can create folders, email filters and folder routeing. This won’t stop the emails but it can help to shield you from them


  • If the cyberbullying is on a school or community website, do as you would do if the bullying was face to face – tell someone like your parents or teachers
  • If it’s on a site that you don’t know about, you have to do a bit of research to find out who hosts the website. There is a good article at Bullying Online about general online safety, with a section on how to get more details on possible owners of the website

Tring Martial Arts Academy – Helping to Keep our kids safe – see

Call to Change Anti Bullying Law

Friday, January 20th, 2012

Leading education lawyers and charities are calling for a change in the law to protect vulnerable young people from extreme bullying in England and Wales.

Head teachers are not being held accountable for violent and abusive pupils and anti-bullying guidelines should be strengthened, they claim.

The Children’s Legal Centre said more parents had been seeking legal advice.

But the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) said “hyper-accountability” already existed.

England Schools Minister Vernon Coaker said the government’s measures were working, but recognised procedures for parents needed to be strengthened. He said a bill to address this was already in parliament.

The call comes after the Westminster government launched a campaign to help tackle bullying against children with special needs.

Mike Charles, an education lawyer, said schools are too often trying to avoid responsibility.

“I’m seeing a rise in the number of people turning to the law, heads are not being held accountable,” he said.

He wants heads to be forced to report and act on all cases of bullying, and an independent adjudicator to access every school.

Physical and emotional

In a BBC Breakfast News report Debbie (name changed to protect her children) said she had no choice but to consider legal action against the school her two teenage children used to attend.

She claims teachers stood by and watched as her son was attacked – in front of her – by about 40 other pupils.

“They had these temporary metal road signs the triangular ones and they just attacked him with it, beating him.

“Watching your kids being persecuted for no reason – it’s heartbreaking,” she said.

She says her children have been kept out of class for nearly a year because of physical and emotional bullying by other pupils.

The school says Debbie’s child’s special needs were behind many of the problems, and any bullying took place outside the school.

Alison Fiddy, from the Children’s Legal Centre, backed the call to stress the responsibility of head teachers. “We need to see heads being held accountable,” she said.

But Mick Brookes, general secretary of the NAHT, said head teachers were already held to account in a number of different ways and “hyper-accountability [is] out there already”.

Mr Coaker said: “There is a bill before parliament at the current time which will allow those procedures to be strengthened in the small number of cases where things haven’t worked.

“That will allow parents to go to the local government ombudsman,” he added.

‘Distressed child’

The National Bullying Helpline has called for a new code of practice for schools, similar to one used in the workplace by the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas).

The helpline’s chief executive Christine Pratt said she wanted outsiders brought in to schools to investigate bullying claims and take pressure away from parents.

“We believe teachers are not necessarily the right person or individual to address a complaint from a parent,” she said.

“That just raises another issue of conflict and then the parent is in a situation where they’ve got a credibility issue and they’ve got a distressed child at home.”

Tring Martial Arts Academy – Helping to Keep our Kids Safe! – for more information on our classes see

Anti Bullying Advice

Saturday, December 17th, 2011

Courtesy of Bullying UK 

Bullies are very cunning and are expert at getting away with it.

We all know that bullying goes on in every school but it’s the way it’s dealt with which makes the difference between life being tolerable or a misery.

How to solve the problem

If you are being bullied, tell a friend, tell a teacher and tell your parents. It won’t stop unless you do. It can be hard to do this so if you don’t feel you can do it in person it might be easier to write a note to your parents explaining how you feel, or perhaps confide in someone outside the immediate family, like a grandparent, aunt, uncle or cousin and ask them to help you tell your parents what’s going on.

Your form tutor needs to know what is going on so try to find a time to tell him/her when it won’t be noticeable. You could stay behind on the pretext of needing help with some work. If you don’t feel you can do that, then go to the medical room and speak to the school nurse.

The best idea is if a teacher can catch the bullies red-handed. That way, you won’t get into bother from anyone for telling tales. It will be clear to everyone what has been going on. Don’t be tempted to hit back because you could get hurt or get into trouble.

Bullying includes:
  • People calling you names
  • Making things up to get you into trouble
  • Hitting, pinching, biting, pushing and shoving
  • Taking things away from you
  • Damaging your belongings
  • Stealing your money
  • Taking your friends away from you
  • Posting insulting messages on the internet or by IM (cyberbullying)
  • Spreading rumours
  • Threats and intimidation
  • Making silent or abusive phone calls
  • Sending you offensive phone texts
  • Bullies can also frighten you so that you don’t want to go to school, so that you pretend to be ill to avoid them
Hitting someone is an assault.

Try to stay in safe areas of the school at break and lunchtime where there are plenty of other people. Bullies don’t like witnesses. If you are hurt at school, tell a teacher immediately and ask for it to be written down. Make sure you tell your parents.

Bullying is upsetting

Bullying is very upsetting and if you feel you can’t cope, tell your parents and go to see your doctor. Many doctors are very sympathetic about the effects of bullying and yours may be able to write a note for the school explaining the effect that bullying is having on your health.

You could think about judo or martial arts classes so that you are confident you can look after yourself if necessary.

If people are making nasty remarks about you then it may be because they are jealous. Perhaps you’re better looking than they are or work harder or perhaps the teachers like you better. One way of dealing with remarks is simply to say …yeah, whatever, …. each time so that you show them that it isn’t having the effect of upsetting you in the way they think.

The bullies will have worked out what buttons to push to make you upset.

They may make remarks about:
  • Your weight
  • Your looks
  • The colour of your hair
  • Your family
  • Your schoolwork
  • If you are popular
  • If you work hard
  • If you have a disability
  • If you are a different religion, colour or culture
  • If you wear spectacles or a hearing aid
  • If you have dyslexia or dyspraxia
  • If you’ve been off school due to illness

Bullying UK gets emails from pupils who have stopped eating because they’ve been called fat, or stupid because they have dyslexia. One girl tried to burn her freckles off because of cruel remarks.

The thing all these pupils had in common is that they were perfectly ordinary, nice people who had the misfortune to come up against a very nasty person.

Tring Martial Arts Black Belt Academy – Striving to keep our kids safe!

How can I keep my child safe from online strangers?

Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

Excerpted from an article on –

Simple surfing and instant messaging with friends are common activities for kids — and generally safe, if you’ve discussed some rules of use with them. Chatting with strangers, however, may be a different story. Although there’s no way to know the actual risk, the FBI cautions that kids whose Internet activity isn’t monitored are most at risk for being exploited.

Keep the computer in a common room in the house, rather than in your their bedroom. Take an interest in the sites they are visiting and the people with whom they are chatting (some shady characters pose as kids or teens in chat rooms to seem less threatening). Warn him never to give out his personal information (his phone number, name, address, school name, etc.), agree to meet in-person anyone he meets in a chat room, or share any photographs.

Urge them to introduce you to any new “friends” he meets online and to tell you if they ever feel uncomfortable about conversations that take place. Most important, talk about the dangers of interacting with strangers online and remind them that people online often don’t tell the truth. The FBI also recommends that parents maintain access to young kids’ online accounts and randomly check their email.

Finally, you can use parental controls offered by your internet service provider or through blocking and filtering software.

Tring Anti Bullying is a free resource which aims to offer practical advice to help with all aspects of bullying.  It is operated by Tring Martial Arts – lets stamp out bullying forever!

Family Safety Online – Turn to Google

Sunday, September 11th, 2011

In my last post I covered some amazing facts of cyber bullying – now for those parents that are concerned I recommend that you check out Googles Family Safety Page – now I am sure that every search engine offers something similar but as Google is the most used search engine the link below should be a parents first port of call – see

Tring Anti Bullying is an initiative of Tring Martial Arts – please see our website or call us on 0845 094 8805.