About Ken Gibson
My name is Ken Gibson. I am the founder and Head Instructor of Pouncing Tigers. For over 20 years I have been training in martial arts. As a teenager I started with Hapkido and continued on to learn Russian Sambo, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Farang Mu Sul, Boxing, Kick Boxing, Escrima and Estacada. I received my first black belt in 1993 when I was 18 years old. For a short time, I even fought professionally in Mixed Martial Arts. I recently graduated with a Masters of Science degree in Acupuncture and Traditional Oriental Medicine and am also the owner of Harlem Holistic Center.
Over the last decade I have been teaching children and adults in various martial art schools throughout New York City . I’ve taught in many afterschool programs during this time. I love working with people of all ages. Teaching children is a joy to me and my classes are unique. Keeping things entertaining as well as educational is one key to success with young minds. I love to mix it up with the adults and get a little more serious. Though I still enjoy some levity in the adult classes too.
The Kids classes.
I have always enjoyed children, but teaching them martial arts did not come naturally. My first attempt to tame wild children was … shocking. If you told me then that I would found my own children’s martial arts school, I would have thought you were crazy. I discovered quickly that children learn in a very different way than adults. Throughout all this time I have learned a great deal about how to work with kids. To be more exact, they taught me how to work with them. If I can just be myself with them, have fun and follow a few simple rules, everyone has a great time. Though, I specially love when the parents get caught up in class and start shouting out the answers. The moms and dads I am talking about know who they are!
Teaching martial arts to children is, for some, automatically a bad idea. They think it is about violence. To bring a child who may or may not be having a behavioral problem to a school where they will learn to punch and kick does not make sense. But the truth is very different. Discipline, self control and respect are imbedded into every lesson. In the Pouncing Tigers classes the students learn to listen more carefully and respond respectfully. And they do it with a smile. They don’t realize they will improve at school work, get along with others more easily and work harder at everything they do. Even children with developmental issues like ADD and ADHD excel when they participate in a good martial arts program. It happens all the time.
In the Kickboxing classes our main goals are to get a good workout and have fun doing it. We use kickboxing techniques to get in and stay in shape. By learning a real skill as we work out the time flies by. I love when people come into class and suddenly realize how much they have learned and how much stronger they are from when they first started. I don’t mind when someone has a hard time in their first classes or if they cant finish some of the exercises. Because I know when they are able to complete everything they will be able to see how far they have come. And hitting things just feels good sometimes.
Imagine looking forward to working out. Imagine working out with other like-minded people where the time seems to fly by.