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  • Connecting with Your Ninja Kid: A Mom's Guide to Building Strong Bonds

    Being a mom to a ninja kid can be an exciting journey filled with obstacles, adventures, and plenty of surprises. Your child's passion for ninja activities is an incredible opportunity to connect with them on a deeper level. Check out these 10 tips to build stronger relationships through the sport of ninja! 1. Share Their Passion One of the most effective ways to connect with your ninja is to take a genuine interest in their passion. Attend their classes, watch ninja competitions together, and ask questions about their training. Showing enthusiasm for what they love fosters a sense of validation and support. 2. Participate in Their World Consider joining in on the fun! Many ninja gyms offer family or parent-child classes where you can try out the obstacles and challenges together. This shared experience not only strengthens your connection but also provides a chance for you both to learn and grow. 3. Be a Supportive Cheerleader Whether it's a small accomplishment in training or a big competition, be their biggest cheerleader. Celebrate their successes and offer encouragement during setbacks. Your emotional support can help them develop confidence and resilience. 4. Listen Actively Ninjas are often filled with stories of their training adventures. Take the time to listen actively and attentively when they share their experiences. Ask open-ended questions to encourage them to express themselves, and be present in the moment. (i.e. what was a skill you thought you couldn't master today?) 5. Create a Ninja-Inspired Space Transform a corner of your home into a ninja-inspired space. Decorate it with ninja-themed posters, equipment, or a mini obstacle course. This dedicated area can serve as a reminder of their passion and a place where you can bond over training and practice. 6. Teach Life Skills Ninja training goes beyond physical abilities; it teaches valuable life skills such as discipline, perseverance, and goal-setting. Discuss how these skills can be applied in everyday life, emphasizing the importance of hard work and dedication. 7. Set Goals Together Work with your ninja to set realistic goals for their training. Discuss what they want to achieve and help them create a plan to reach those goals. This collaborative effort can instill a sense of purpose and responsibility. Connecting with your ninja kid on this level helps them see your commitment to their success! 8. Encourage Balance While it's essential to support their ninja pursuits, ensure there's a healthy balance between training and other aspects of their life, such as school, social activities, and downtime. Help them manage their time effectively. 9. Be Patient and Understanding Ninja training can be challenging, and there may be moments of frustration or disappointment. Be patient and understanding when they face obstacles or setbacks. Your empathy and encouragement will help them stay motivated. 10. Share Your Wisdom As a mom, you have a wealth of life experience to offer. Share stories of your own challenges and triumphs, and how you've overcome obstacles. Your wisdom can be a source of inspiration and valuable life lessons! Connecting with your ninja kid is a rewarding journey that deepens your relationship and nurtures their growth. Embrace their passion, be their biggest supporter, and cherish the moments you spend together on this exciting ninja adventure!

  • The Science Behind Kids in Ninja Sport

    The science behind kids participating in acrobatic sports like NinjaZone, gymnastics, dance, and yoga is multifaceted and encompasses various aspects of physical and cognitive development. NinjaZone believes these are critical foundations for children in not just sports, but in life. Here are some key scientific principles and factors to consider 1. Physical Development Muscle Development: Engaging in acrobatic sports helps kids develop strength, agility, and flexibility. The science behind this lies in the growth and adaptation of muscle fibers and the nervous system's ability to recruit muscle units effectively. Bone Health: Regular physical activity, including ninja-style movements, can contribute to stronger bones. Weight-bearing activities stimulate bone growth and density, reducing the risk of conditions like osteoporosis later in life. Coordination: Ninja sports require precise coordination of movements, which can improve a child's fine and gross motor skills. This development is linked to the brain's ability to process information and send signals to muscles. 2. Cognitive Development Problem-Solving: Ninja sports often involve solving puzzles and navigating complex obstacle courses. This challenges a child's problem-solving abilities, enhancing their cognitive skills. Focus and Concentration: Maintaining concentration during acrobatic performances is essential for safety and success. Engaging in these sports can help kids improve their attention span and focus. 3. Psychological Benefits Confidence: Achieving success in ninja sports can boost a child's self-esteem and confidence. This is linked to the science of positive reinforcement and the release of neurotransmitters like dopamine, which are associated with feelings of accomplishment. Resilience: Ninja sports often involve facing challenges and overcoming failures. These experiences can contribute to a child's emotional resilience and ability to cope with setbacks. 4. Biomechanics Balance and Stability: The science of biomechanics studies how the body's structure and movement interact. In ninja sports, kids learn to control their bodies and maintain balance, which involves understanding principles like center of gravity and leverage. Injury Prevention: Proper technique and body mechanics are critical for injury prevention. Kids learn to move in ways that minimize the risk of injury, and this is rooted in biomechanical principles. 5. Neuroplasticity Skill Acquisition: The brain's ability to adapt and form new neural connections, known as neuroplasticity, plays a significant role in acquiring and improving ninja skills. Training and practice strengthen these neural pathways over time. 6. Social Interaction: Teamwork and Communication: Ninja class involves peer involvement and group participation. These activities promote social interaction and communication skills, which are essential for a child's overall development. The science behind kids in ninja sport encompasses physical, cognitive, psychological, and biomechanical aspects. These activities offer numerous benefits that contribute to a child's overall development and well-being. Find a NinjaZone location near you! theninjazone.com/find-location

  • 5 First-Aid Hacks for Ninja Kids

    Cuts, scrapes, and bruises. Oh, my! All of these are bound to happen at some point when you have a very active child. Especially in the Summer time! 1. Frozen sponge as an ice-pack You’ll need a sponge, some water, and a sandwich bag. Simply, take the sponge and let it absorb as much as possible. Then, take the soaked sponge and place it in a sandwich bag. Finally, let the sponge freeze in the freezer so that it is ready for whenever it is needed—no need to use loose ice or buy gel ice packs that can burst and become hazardous. You can make as many frozen sponges as you like and reuse them as well! 2. Use honey if you don’t have hydrogen peroxide Don’t have any hydrogen peroxide around to disinfect? You can use honey on minor scrapes and cuts. Honey has anti-bacterial properties which make it a great substitute if you find yourself without any antiseptics. 3. Soothe mosquito bites with a banana peel Rub the inside of a banana peel on the affected area. The sugars from the peel help to draw out fluids from the bite. Banana peels also help to stop the itchy sensation! 4. Try getting splinters out with sticky tape Tweezers and splinters can be a little scary for kids. If the splinter is small enough and superficial, tape can be an easy substitute. Take a piece of sticky tape and put it over the splinter. When you pull it away the splinter should come right out with it. 5. Use baking soda to treat bee stings If your kiddo gets stung by a bee, no worries! You can make a paste out of baking soda and a little water. The basic mixing ratio for this is 3 parts of baking soda and one part water. Really, you just need to make sure it isn’t too runny. Make sure the stinger is out before putting this mixture on the bee sting. Let the paste sit on the area for 15 minutes and wash off. Baking soda helps to neutralize the venom from the sting which reduces inflammation and pain. Ninjas don't stay down for long!

  • Kid's Summer Bingo {free printable}

    We know you’ll be busy this Summer – so why not cross off some Summer Bingo squares along the way? We created an easy printable that you can hang on the fridge. Cross off each item as you do it and try to get to them all! Tag us in your summer fun photos on Instagram or Facebook. Save this free printable -

  • 5 Tips for Talking to Kids

    (Without Talking Down to Them) For Ninja trainers and coaches, dedicated to embedding the discipline, focused energy, and skill of a Ninja into students, the ability to properly communicate with children is vital. When talking and communication are done right throughout a lesson, students learn more, have more fun, and benefit from a more structured environment. With proper communication, everyone benefits and experiences an easier time as we work together to teach new skills and have fun. Read on below to discover several important guidelines to stick to when seeking to foster better communication with students, and experience the results for yourself! 5 Tips for Talking to Kids - 1. Speak to Students in a Mature Way For students training to be a Ninja, it’s important to acknowledge their self-felt status as a “big kid.” Students are eager to rise to the occasion as they learn new skills, and might be less willing to listen if they feel that they’re being spoken to as “babies.” Speak to them as you might to adults; slowly and clearly, with patience for questions, and you might find a more receptive class. 2. Make Eye Contact For many children, the feeling of personal attention is just as important as a mature tone of speech when addressing them. Maintaining eye contact while talking, and making it with as many students as possible, communicates a sense of “Yes, I’m talking to you too.” That connection to students can work wonders in a personal sense of connection and accountability as you seek to stay on task. 3. Stay Mindful As many successes as you have, when communicating with children there will inevitably be setbacks. There will be days when it’s more difficult to communicate, and it can be easy for frustration to begin creeping up during this time. Remember to stay mindful of the fact that difficulty happens less often than good behavior, and keep a calm demeanor as you attempt to keep things under control. 4. Help Students Set Their Own Limits The core of our program centers around allowing students to progress at their own pace and find their limits. Don’t be afraid to support a student if they want to try something you might feel is slightly out of their grasp. While keeping safety as a priority, allowing students to press themselves is part of the beauty of NinjaZone. As a guide, cheerleader, and chaperone, you’ll be part of an experience they’ll never forget! 5. Be Firm When Necessary As fun as training may be, limits are also necessary to ensure that each student has a safe, fun experience. When talking about and laying down boundaries, expectations, and discipline to ensure that everyone gets along, you will have to be firm and uncompromising in what you allow and what you don’t. By clearly communicating your expectations and sticking to them, students will accept your leadership without feeling babied. When you’re leading, you’re the teacher and head communicator rolled into one. By following the 5 Tips for Talking to Kids when interacting with students, you’re more likely to have a fun, safe and harmonious group of students.

  • Fall Family Fun! {free download}

    It's Fall y'all and there is no better time to get together as a family and check off some classic Fall activities than right now! Check out this year's NinjaZone Fall Bucket List - Download the PDF -

  • 5 Ways to End Negativity in Your Staff Culture

    Having employees is hard work. During stressful, busy, or chaotic times staff morale can hit a low point. When morale is down, negativity creeps into a workplace making the environment toxic. As business owners, directors, coaches, and leaders we need to work on changing the energy around us when it starts to go downhill. I am NOT perfect. Despite my many years in a leadership role, I still have to keep working on these strategies. Believe me when I tell you that awareness will lead to change. Here are 5 ways to lose that negative energy! 1. Pause. When you’re confronted with a negative situation, it’s our tendency to react quickly and hopefully squash it quickly. Take a deep breath, and let it be okay to say – “I need to put some thought into this.” Show your concern without judgment. Even a good “hmmmm….” works. Then take some time to empathize and think through it. 2. Ask questions, rather than making statements, and remove yourself from the cycle. I read an awesome management book called “The Coaching Habit” by Michael Bungay Stanier. I highly recommend it. In the book, they give seven stellar questions when meeting with an employee or co-worker. So often we find ourselves in “solve it” mode that we insert our opinions into the situation in an effort to help. Rather than assess, ask questions like, “Why is this a challenge for you?” or “How can I help?” When people realize that you’re not going to solve all of their problems, they’ll get the hint quickly. 3. Accept criticism as an opportunity, and try your best not to make excuses. Look at every mistake or critique as an opportunity to be better tomorrow. And don’t beat yourself up! Mistakes are part of growth, and the more you make the better you get. Someone cares about you, your team/staff, or your club enough to help you out.  Or, even if you don’t agree, they have a reason to believe what they believe. What vibe are you giving off that warrants the criticism? When people see that your intentions are true, they forgive, and will even support you further.  As a leader, if you kindly accept criticism, so will the people that look up to you. 4. Appreciate Daily – as much as you can. This is another one that I’ve had to seriously work on. I always thought that if I handed out too many compliments people would stop working. Soooo not the case. Think about it…How do you feel when you’re criticized? How do YOU feel when you’re praised? People (just like kids) want to do more of what they’re praised for. I certainly don’t mean to be fake, but if you make it a habit to appreciate what people do right, you’ll be amazed at how receptive they, your staff and coworkers, are to make changes when you need them to. 5. Make gossip a fireable offense. Sound crazy? I heard this from Dave Ramsey at a conference. “You are every problem and every solution in your business,” he said. It hit me like a ton of bricks. What? Do you mean I don’t just have to deal with the gossip and negativity? This single statement means we as owners, managers, and leaders have the ability to choose. We choose the hire, we choose the expectations, we choose what to manage, and we choose what to make a priority. A LOT of responsibility? Yes. But with responsibility comes freedom. You’re in charge and you have the choice to choose. Dave Ramsay, and now all of my companies use his definition of gossip. “Gossip is negative talk without a proposed solution.” And you can get fired for it. We haven’t had to do it, nor do I hope it ever comes to that, but since simply discussing this with the staff, the changes have been amazing. What do you do to change negative energy? What makes your staff culture great? Let me know in the comments.

  • 8 Tips for Back to School

    School is starting up soon! There’s a long list of things you need to get ready. From all the supply shopping to your child’s first-day jitters it can be hard to keep track of everything you need to be prepared! Here are 8 tips to help get you ready for the back-to-school season. 1. Re-adjust your kids’ sleep schedule two weeks before school starts. This will help them to get back into the swing of things. The two weeks will help cause their sleep schedule to readjust in time for the school year. 2. Find a program or activity that your kid can do after school. Extracurriculars are a great way to keep your child involved. They also have another opportunity to make new friends! 3. Let your kids play a part in picking out supplies and clothes. Having them help pick out their pencils, binders, or clothes can make the back-to-school season more enjoyable! Need a cool backpack?? Check this one out! 4. Have your kid set some goals for the year. Setting goals will help keep your kids motivated going into the school year. For some helpful information on goal setting check out this excellent blog post here! 5. Have backup transportation. Nothing is worse than scrambling to find your kid a ride if the car breaks down, or they miss the bus. Make sure you have a backup plan so your kids are on time for some serious learning! 6. Set your clocks forward 10 minutes. It has worked time and time again! Tricking yourself into thinking that you are running late but you end up being on time! 7. Do something fun before the school year starts. This will help to ease the stress and get a last 00-rah in! 8. Get pumped! Get excited! The school year is starting! Your Ninja is ready to tackle another awesome year!

  • The NinjaZone Ninja Creed

    THE NINJA CREED An important staple of the NinjaZone curriculum is the Ninja Creed. Not only will your child be challenged physically in class, but they will also be challenged to practice what it means to embrace their best self. The Ninja Creed encourages responsibility, respect, manners, kindness, personal growth, impulse restraint, health in both mind and body, conflict resolution, and much more. The Creed is discussed at the beginning and end of each class, and ninjas are encouraged to take the lessons they learn in class and apply them to everyday life at home, school, and with friends.

  • Teach Your Child About Kindness {Free Printable Calendar}

    It’s a great time for self-reflection, introspection, and goal setting with the new year coming up… unfortunately it also tends to be one of the busiest months of the year for many families! Instead of getting caught up in the hustle and bustle, choose instead to slow down and focus on something I like to call “intentional kindness”. In general, as parents, we strive to fill our children up with the right character traits to move them through life as successful, happy, engaged citizens. Sometimes it’s important to make the act of showing kindness to others a priority and with this calendar, you can! Print off this kindness calendar and make a goal to check off 5, 10, 15 (or all!) of the kind activities during the month. If you enjoy doing this with your children, consider incorporating it into your New Year’s goals as well! We’d love to hear feedback from you — which activities did your children enjoy the most? What activities would you suggest that we missed? #ninjasgiveback

  • #NinjasGiveBack: Kindness During Holidays

    “A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” With Thanksgiving upon us and the end of the year in sight, there’s no better time to remind our ninjas of the importance of kindness. Not only that, but every NinjaZone participant agrees to live and operate by the Ninja Creed, which places importance on qualities like respecting and honoring parents, using proper manners, taking self-responsibility, helping others grow to the next level, using ninja powers for good, and beyond. Just as we do every year, we encourage Ninja Parents to get their children involved in the #NinjasGiveBack initiative. Here are some things your family can do to get involved in your household: Donate books to a local library Be sure to check with your library first to see what their drop-off and donation regulations are. Collect soda can tabs for Ronald McDonald House Charities For more information, go to rmhc.org. Donate blankets, newspapers, cleaning supplies, old towels, hand sanitizer, or food to an animal shelter Check with the shelter first – their greatest needs can differ from day-to-day! Organize a neighborhood clean-up initiative Have everyone bring their own trash bags, and don’t forget the masks and gloves! Distribute leaf bags or help neighbors rake fallen leaves Many older citizens need help blowing leaves, raking, bagging, and general yard clean up before winter strikes! Buy gift cards from local businesses or restaurants and give them to those in need Local restaurants and shops need our support now more than ever, and if you pay the purchase forward to someone in need, it’s the gift that keeps on giving! Volunteer to virtually read books to seniors in a local nursing home Many residents in nursing homes are not able to accept in-person visitors right now, and a surprise book reading or other fun interaction with your family would certainly create a bright spot in their day! Deliver doorstep meals to new parents and other homebound individuals Be sure to check for potential allergies ahead of time, and to set up a time for the drop-off that is both socially distant and well-timed for perishable foods. Donate birthday party decorations to youth shelters or children’s hospitals Every kid deserves to have a magical birthday. Think outside the box, and help these kids have a birthday they won’t soon forget! Share your ninjas giving back by using our #ninjasgiveback on any social media platform! We are so excited to see these ninjas throw themselves into acts of kindness and goodness and appreciate the example parents provide these amazing kids we get to help shape and mold.

  • Ninja Nutrition: Pizza Bagels!

    Ninja Nik’s favorite pastime? Being a Ninja. His second favorite? Eating. Here are some delicious recipes that Nik came up with himself, and are a great opportunity for kids to join adults in the kitchen! Have the kids pull a stool up to the counter if they need it, and enjoy a Ninja Nutrition Party! Just try not to eat it all as you go…Nik’s stealthy sneaky-food-grabbing Ninja moves keep mom on her toes! Hii-yah! Nik’s BBQ Chicken Pizza Bagels 4 100% whole wheat bagels (Or Thomas’ Bagel Thins are amazing too!) 1 cup BBQ of your choice ½ cup pizza or spaghetti sauce 2 cups reduced fat mozzarella cheese Grated parmesan cheese to taste Handful of cilantro (optional) 2 cups shredded chicken (Nik here—My mom got a rotisserie chicken from the store, and she let me get my hands all messy when we shredded it!) ½ cup diced red onion Preheat oven to 375° degrees. Lay out bagels or bagel thins with cut side up on a cookie sheet. Once preheated, toast the bagels for 3 minutes. While the bagels are toasting, shred the chicken and then toss it in the BBQ sauce. Spread a THIN layer of pizza sauce on the bagels (too much makes them soggy and goopy). Top with mozzarella cheese and sprinkle on parmesan cheese, if desired. Sprinkle onions on top of the cheese, then add the chicken tossed in the BBQ sauce. Bake until cheese is melted and chicken is heated through. Serve immediately, and top with finely chopped cilantro, if desired. Ninjas, EAT!

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