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Safeguarding advice for parents and carers of Total Taekwondo Participants.

If you’re worried or concerned about any aspect of your child’s involvement in Taekwondo, you’ll find the answers to some frequently asked questions in this section.

There are also details of how to contact us for any other information you might need.

Parents play a pivotal role in encouraging and supporting their child’s participation, success and fun when participating in taekwondo. It’s your right as a parent, or carer, to be able to check how well a club is run, for the sake of your child’s safety and your peace of mind.

If you’re worried that your child or another child is being abused or put at risk during training it’s crucial that you talk to someone. The idea of speaking out about abuse or poor practice in a club setting can be daunting as you will most likely feel worried about the impact on you and/or your child but it is imperative that you take action as you will be safeguarding your child, other children and even children who arrive in the future.

To report a concern, you can visit the Reporting page and find out more information there. There is also a page specifically designed for children to help them identify if they need to speak with someone, and who that should be.

If you can’t find the information you’re looking for, or your questions are unanswered, you can contact us with any concerns you have and we will do our best answer them, or get in touch with the people who can.

If you have an urgent query and you believe there is an immediate risk to the safety of a child or adult at risk please report directly to the Police or Children’s Social Care.

For out of hours advice / concerns please contact the NSPCC on 0808 800 5000.

How can I support my child in Taekwondo?

As a parent you have an important role in your child’s Taekwondo life. Be it from, giving lifts, washing kit and giving words of encouragement on the side lines. You can also support their involvement within Taekwondo through fundraising, volunteering at their club or supporting the clubs social media platforms/website. These are all small things that can make a big difference to your child’s involvement and also the club your child is at.

There are also smaller things you can do whilst your child is participating in Taekwondo to make a big difference on their enjoyment:

  • support your child enthusiastically.

  • encourage your child without expecting perfection.

  • be a good role model – to children and other parents.

  • promote fair play.

  • acknowledge the efforts of all the children.

  • encourage your child to play by the rules.

  • support the coaches and officials (particularly young officials).

  • share challenges or criticisms (of officials, coaches or players) in a constructive way.

  • encourage other spectators to be positive.

  • challenge or report poor spectator behaviour.

  • allow the coaches to coach.

  • support and respect your child’s ambitions in sport.

  • remember that this is your child’s sporting experience – not yours.

For more information on being positive around your child, please refer to our Code of Conduct for Parents.

Other parents seem to be negative towards their child, is their anything I can do?

Parental behaviour within taekwondo for most of the time, is very positive and supportive. Sometimes though, parents can be negative without even knowing. A lot of problems arise when parents:

  • are consistently negative about, mock, verbally abuse or threaten their own child or other players

  • criticise or goad officials, other spectators or coaches

  • square up to, threaten or have fights with other adults or young players

  • encroach on the court or field of play, physically intervene, or disrupt play

  • expect too much of their children

  • focus exclusively on winning at any cost

  • impose sporting aspirations on their children

  • encourage foul play or rule-breaking

  • contradict the advice or guidance of the coach

  • push gifted children too hard and too fast

  • pursue their own sporting dreams through their children

  • define their child by their talent and success alone

  • demand that their child sacrifices ‘fun’ activities for ‘serious’ training

If you see this behaviour, it should be reported to our Club safeguarding Officer so they can look at taking action. You can also direct them to the Code of Conduct as this outlines the conduct which all participants should follow.

My child looks upset after training and they seem reluctant to talk, what should I do?

Your child may have experienced something difficult in their day and it can be difficult to bring it up and talk openly with them about it.

There are lots of different ways to make it easier upon yourself and also your child to talk openly about any concerns they may have. It is all about creating a positive environment with good advice and knowledge to make them aware that there is always someone to talk too.

To start the conversation you should think about:

  • where you start it, create a neutral environment that is suitable, that is away from peers/brothers and sisters as they may influence the content or how much is disclosed to you.

  • the right timing, it may be something you bring up through watching TV as it relates to the topic that needs to be discussed but you could also use it in a scenario such as ‘my friend is going through this situation, what do you think about…’ as this will show that you value your child’s opinion whilst finding out what their knowledge is around the subject matter.

It’s never easy to have a serious conversation with a child but the NSPCC provide expert advice and examples that will help the conversation go more smoothly for both of you.

I think my child is being bullied, how do I deal with this?

If you think your child is being bullied within Total Taekwondo, talk with your Club Safeguarding Officer on how to deal with this and if necessary, report it to Total Taekwondo but first of all, don’t panic.

As a parent your role is to be calming, reassuring and being there to listen. You need to listen to them to establish all the facts before acting and ensure that your child doesn’t retaliate to any bullying. Assure your child that it is not their fault that they are being bullied and reassure them that you are there to support them.

You should ask what your child wants to happen next by identifying the choices open to them and the potential steps to take. Young people want to take ownership of their mental health and learn positive ways to cope with challenges. This regularly comes up in Childline’s peer support message boards and counselling sessions. A Childline survey highlighted that some young people have found that being creative, taking up a hobby, finding peer support networks, or deep breathing and meditation works best for them. Young people value being able to discuss options and make their own decisions about what works best for them.

The Anti-Bullying Alliance provides more support and information to parents around bullying. They also have an interactive tool for parents to understand bullying more.

I am worried about my child being online and unsure if they are safe.

Being online is a massive part of society today and influences everyone and anyone so it can be difficult to know/manage what your child is looking at online. One way to know that they are safe online is to have open and regular talks about what they are doing online, it may be worth having a family discussion to set boundaries and set out what is appropriate and what is not appropriate.

Exploring sites together that your child uses and being positive about them but being open about any concerns that you see. If anything makes them feel uncomfortable, discuss it and talk about why it makes them feel uncomfortable, reassure them and inform them that you are there to talk to them and even show them how to report sites/content and give them the encouragement to report things themselves. If you are unsure what sites/apps your child is using, Net Aware (an organisation set up by NSPCC and O2) has created a guide to the most popular apps and online sites that children are most likely to use.

The NSPCC provide more advice on talking to your child and keeping them safe online and also the UK Safer Internet Centre provide support for young people, parents and teachers/professionals. They highlight the issues with young people using the internet but also provide advice on how to ensure they are safe and how you can assist.

UK Safer Internet Centre has published some FAQ’s around advice for parents, guardians and carers about online safety. These can be accessed here.

Where can I find some more information?

The CPSU (Child Protection in Sport Unit) have a section on their website full of videos from professionals and children about the impact parents can have on their success in sport. One that is particularly useful comes from the children themselves – My Magic Sports Kit.

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