Abishai Style of Taekwondo’s Christian Black Belt Academy Character Development Program: Examining our Effectiveness at Building Moral and Biblical Character through Martial Arts Education
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This thesis is a primarily qualitative study examining the effectiveness of Christian Black Belt Academy. Christian Black Belt Academy is a martial arts school consisting of nine locations in Lathrop, California, and surrounding cities located in the San Joaquin Valley of Central California. Christian Black Belt Academy is affiliated with Christian Black Belt Academies of America, a franchise martial arts company with over thirty locations that has been in existence since 1996. This study was guided by the following research questions: First, are we effectively teaching character development in our children’s martial arts classes? Second, are children being impacted and applying our character development curricular “mat chat” themes at home? Third, are our Christian Black Belt Academy franchisees implementing our character development curriculum? Data was gathered by collecting anonymous surveys from parents of current students. In addition to collecting surveys, interviews were conducted of CBBA school owners and instructors who are actively engaged in teaching CBBA Taekwondo including our Character Development Mat Chats. The final group that was surveyed was parents of students at random Christian Black Belt Academy schools around the country to see if the prescribed Character Development Mat Chats are in place and how effective they are. The data compiled from the surveys and interviews provided triangulating evidence that will be used to effectively strategize the future of the Christian Black Belt Academy Character Development program. The data revealed that CBBA is excelling in the area of character development within founder owned locations and that, while there were a variety of strengths about CBBA’s Character Development Curriculum, we do need to make adjustments to the curriculum to make it more user friendly for every instructor and school owner to implement. CBBA must consider shortening the proposed length of each ‘mat chat’ in order to be considerate of the instructor’s time constraints. It is likely that this study will have an influence on how CBBA structures its Character Development Curriculum implementation process. In addition, this research may be useful to the martial arts industry at large. These findings may be useful to other children’s athletic programs that desire to implement a structured character development process.
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