Martial Arts for Life

On A Quest To Be The Best!

Family Safety: Holiday Shopping Safety

As featured on the New Providence Patch: Read our Blog on The New Providence Patch

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Let’s keep it that way by staying healthy and safe this holiday season. Now that Black Friday has officially kicked off the holiday shopping season, many of us will be hitting shopping centers and malls in search of good deals on gifts for friends and family.

Statistics show that crime typically increases during and after the holiday season. This is because more people with cash, gifts, gift cards, etc. are out and about, which presents more opportunities for the criminal looking for an easy score.

Crimes of Opportunity

Crimes of opportunity are those resulting from spontaneous, unlawful action due to a situation that presents itself without prior planning. Such acts have little or no premeditation. For example, a criminal who notices a vehicle in an isolated section of a parking garage filled with shopping bags and then takes the opportunity to break into the vehicle to steal the contents is committing a crime of opportunity.

Our main goal is to avoid providing an easy opportunity for criminals. Here are some ways to avoid being targeted during holiday shopping trips:

1.) Shop during daylight hours whenever possible. If you have to shop at night, go with friends or other family members. Avoid shopping alone at night.

2.) Avoid wearing expensive jewelry or anything that would attract unwanted attention from a potential mugger or thief.

3.) When approaching your car check to see if anyone is hiding underneath the vehicle. It is possible for someone to hide under your vehicle and grab you as you get in. There have also been cases of assailants using a knife or other weapon to slash or attack their victim’s leg from under the vehicle, making it difficult to run or fight back.

4.) Don’t carry too many packages at once. It is important to have clear visibility and freedom to move. Consolidate your purchases into a small number of bags. Do not make it appear that you have purchased a large number of items.  

5.) Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Pay with a check or credit card instead.

6.) ALWAYS stay alert. Be on the lookout for anyone in the vicinity of your vehicle that is acting strangely. People do not typically hang around parking lots or parked cars, particularly if they are not carrying any packages, do not have their keys out, etc. Return to the store immediately if you see any suspicious activity near your car.

7.) Tell a friend or family member when and where you’re going, and when you’re expected to return.

8.) Do not purchase items from non-licensed solicitors in parking lots. The goods being offered are often counterfeit or stolen. Even more dangerous, these types of deals are often a set-up for a mugging or robbery attempt.

9.) Make sure any valuables are out of sight or locked in your trunk. Remember, MP3 players, iPods, cell phones, laptop computers, GPS systems, satellite radios and other small electronic devices are a car burglar’s dream.

10.) If you see something, say something! Contact mall security or your local police department if you witness any suspicious or criminal activity while doing your holiday shopping.  If you need immediate response, or anticipate personal safety could be a legitimate concern, call 9-1-1 immediately. And never, ever attempt to investigate suspicious activity on your own. Contacting mall security or police if you witness odd behavior – like someone wiggling the door handles on a vehicle – can help prevent potential crimes like car burglaries and auto theft.

Finally, I want to offer a word of caution on one safety tip that has been taught to people for years, particularly in women’s self-defense courses. It is often recommended that you have your keys ready, in your hand, prior to leaving the store you are shopping in. A few years ago, I learned of a case where the FBI had apprehended a criminal who had abducted and subsequently murdered nearly thirty women across the country over the span of several years. He had approached all his victims in mall parking lots. When the Federal agents were interviewing this career criminal, they asked him how he went about selecting his victims. He stated that he looked for women who had car keys in their hand because that meant they were not being picked up by anyone and were alone. I do think it is a good idea to have your keys (or key fob) in your hand, just keep that hand in a pocket or out of plain view.

If you are unable to follow these suggestions, I recommend doing your holiday shopping online with reputable websites in order to avoid putting yourself at risk.

Martial Arts for Life New Providence, NJ

Making our community healthier & safer, one person at a time.

The Village Shopping Center, 1260 Springfield Ave., New Providence, NJ 07974

Proud to offer Martial Arts, Fitness, Nutrition & Personal Protection Strategies to residents of New Providence NJ, Berkeley Heights NJ, Chatham NJ, Stirling NJ, Gillette NJ, Summit NJ, Union County NJ, Morris County NJ and all surrounding areas.

P.S. Visit our website at to learn about our Academy and our programs.

Martial Arts for Life

November 28, 2012 Posted by | Personal Safety | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Perfect Time for Martial Arts?

The Perfect Time for Martial Arts is Now!

A recently publishes article by world renowned Master Instructor Dave Kovar discussed why now is the perfect time to get involved in Martial Arts training. Below are some of the main reasons he provided as to why the average person needs Martial Arts training now more than ever.

Stress: With everything that’s happening in this country and around the world, the stress level of the average person is dramatically higher than in the past. Unmanaged stress can be extremely detrimental to our health, our relationships, and even our job productivity. There aren’t many things that can reduce stress better than an intense Martial Arts class. Many times our students come to class stressed from the activities of daily life, then leave with a completely different mindset at the end of class.

Stay-cations: Many families who are curbing their travel plans this year and who consider their training as a mini, twice-a-week getaways without leaving town.

Obesity: Martial Arts is fitness with a purpose. There are few activities that offer the fitness benefits of a good Martial Arts class. Fitness has three components: strength, flexibility, and endurance. Martial arts training demands a balance between the three. Therefore, a person who trains in Martial Arts will find his/her weakest areas greatly improved. And, because they develop greater balance of strength, flexibility and endurance, children will be less likely to injure themselves while participating in other athletic activities.

Athletic Enhancement: There’s a reason ever professional sports team in every major sport supplements its training with Martial Arts. Martial Arts training offers several advantages. It is amazingly effective at enhancing general coordination because it uses every part of the body in a balanced way. Upper body, lower body, right side, left side, forward movement, lateral movement and rotational movement are all included in Martial Arts training.

Relationships: Human interaction counterbalances technology. In these days of working at home, 500 cable channels, Twitter and Facebook, many modern Americans need more live social interaction. At the Martial Arts Academy, students find themselves surrounded by positive, high quality, encouraging people (instructors and co-students alike) who help bring out their best and keep them focused on the prize.

Some very insightful observations from a true leader in our industry. Master K. also has an amazing book on parenting now available from called, “A Dad’s Toolbox for Better Parenting.”

Martial Arts for Life

The Village Shopping Center, 1260 Springfield Ave., New Providence, NJ 07974

Proud to offer Martial Arts, Fitness, Nutrition & Personal Protection Strategies to residents of New Providence NJ, Berkeley Heights NJ, Chatham NJ, Stirling NJ, Gillette NJ, Summit NJ, Union County NJ, Morris County NJ and all surrounding areas.

P.S. Visit our website at to learn about our Academy and our programs

Martial Arts for Life


June 7, 2011 Posted by | Martial Arts & Fitness | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment