Kick through Summer with Last Dragon Martial Arts

Published: Jul. 21, 2022 at 7:58 AM CDT
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Lynn Haven, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) -Some students are using the summer break to learn a new skill.

In this week’s Summertime Learning, we hear how kids kick their way towards self-control and building up their self-esteem.

At Last Dragon Martial Arts, kids are getting a kick out of summer.

Sensei and Chief Instructor Jesse Nelson teaches the class at Pure Platinum Health & Fitness.

“What we do here in the program is teach martial arts. So we have a mixture of TaeKwonDo, Karate, as well as Boxing and some other martial art techniques that we teach,” Nelson says.

Students also learn self-defense with a little bit of jujitsu.

Right now the class is made up of about 15 kids, ranging from ages 4-18. A few students say they enjoy coming out and learning new techniques.

“We do like blocks, we learn how to kick punch, and learn how to defend ourselves,” Eli Friday, who’s a yellow belt said.

The students also learn life skills.

“It allows them to learn self-control, self-esteem, and self-defense in a very positive way,” Nelson said.

Nelson is not only their instructor, but he’s also the mayor of Lynn Haven. He says he wants kids in the community to have positive activities to be involved in.

“Being able to offer this for the kids, I think is a great outlet,” Nelson said.

“I like teaching other kids how to like do karate, and do the right things in karate,” Will Melzer, who’s a recommended black belt said.

The camp is recognized across the nation, it’s affiliated with AAU Martial Arts and Kukkiwon, the Traditional World Karate Association, and Unified World Martial Arts.

Nelson says students receive their belts based on Christian principles and philosophies.

“The belt system that we follow from white belt to black belt actually aligns with the fruit of the spirit. And so white belt is love, the yellow belt is joy and we continue to accelerate all the way until we get to black belt. Which represents self-control,” Nelson said.

They’re learning self-control while having fun.

“I would say it’s amazing, it’s really fun, it’s a fun place to be and learn how to do martial arts,” Friday said.

For those that are interested in joining the program, the cost is $125 to sign up and that includes membership fees, first month fees, and a uniform.

As of right now, two 45 minutes classes are offered twice a week, and fees are $60 a month.

Visit the program’s website.

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