Punishment vs. Discipline | Pentagon Mixed Martial Arts
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Our physical doors are closed, but our digital doors are OPEN. Secure your spot and get started today with our EXCLUSIVE virtual training program offer!

By opting into the web form above you are providing consent for Pentagon Mixed Martial Arts to send you periodic text messages. Standard rates may apply. You can reply HELP at anytime or learn more. You may opt-out anytime by replying STOP.
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Best thing about Pentagon MMA is that time and time again they have proven that their relationship with the students is more than just a transaction/monthly payment .... they are super dedicated and provide individual attention whether in person ... or virtually! Which is why the standard of training is incredible! One of the best I have ever seen..... sorry covid-19, you cant get between me and Muay Thai ... thank you Kru Vivek Nakarmi for everything you do!

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My daughter and I have been using the online classes and are so very grateful for their existence!! Still feel strange watching that first one with that old lady (me!) in it!!! Thanks Master Vivek and all the other staff for staying the course.

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I wanted to thank you again for the online classes and everything you're doing! I haven't been able to take a live class but the replays are fantastic! we have a heavy bag up and try to use it with every class! thanks again! y'all are awesome! having the workouts and the videos to follow have helped my sanity and are keeping me positive!

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I cannot say enough positive things about Pentagon MMA. I moved to VA without knowing anyone and I quickly made life long friends here. In addition to these connections, I learned not only Muay Thai, but the ART of Muay Thai. I cannot stress how rare this is. Pentagon MMA is not just a cardio kickboxing class. You will learn proper technique, the art of Muay Thai and its origins, and boost your self-confidence. Vivek was the best teacher I have ever had in Muay Thai, and I have yet to find a school that even comes close to PMMA now that I have moved north for work. Best Muay Thai school around!

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I am a complete newbie when it comes to Muay Thai. I have grappled with some friends with jiujitsu and always wanted to get back into some sort of martial art but as a female, I always felt intimidated as usually these places are male-dominated. I did not have to worry about that here! The instructors have always been informative, patient, and kind. It must rub off onto the people to as they have been super nice as well. I'm glad I signed up! Will continue this until I move out of the area but I definitely have a better appreciation for Muay Thai now thanks to Pentagon MMA.

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Awesome place. I love training here. Have been learning Muay Thai for over a year. The trainers are excellent and the community outstanding. The facility is always clean and all the staff is very friendly. I would recommend this gym to anyone: Beginners and advanced. Master Chon keeps the lessons interesting so that you will learn something new.

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My son is in summer camp at Pentagon MMA in Arlington. It's fantastic -- he's really happy and they have a very organized and well-run program. In addition to martial arts, they take several field trips (and even had a back-up field trip set up for a rainy day), and do a lot of activities with character-building elements. When I picked him up a few minutes early at the end of his first day, he asked me if he could stay longer and keep playing with his new friends. I'm very impressed with the staff and coaches, and I definitely plan to sign him up again next summer.

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My son went to Spring Camp here. We had not seen the facility before we dropped him off the first day so he was a bit nervous (as was I), but within minutes the welcoming staff made us feel comfortable and gave clear directions on how we could jump into the fun. When I picked him up that first afternoon, he said "Mom, you know what I liked about camp? EVERYTHING". He wanted to tell me about his day every day of camp, when I am normally prying it out of him. Huge hit and we will definitely be back.

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Pentagon MMA is excellent!!! My 4-year-old son started with the aim of learning self-defence, but he has learnt so much more! His confidence, listening and responsiveness, and focus and concentration have all improved!!! Thanks Pentagon MMA.

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My older kid started coming here a few months after I did (she's 4). It's been amazing - from the facility itself (clean, open spaces) to the staff (professional, welcoming). There is an air of humility and hard work that permeates and is contagious -- and you can see it stems from the leadership of owner Kru Vivek.

Jake D

I cannot explain how much this has helped my four-year-old daughter. Your head would explode if you heard her shouting "yes sir" and "yes ma'am" around the house for chores. She has taken to the discipline very well and it's helped in her academics and in her social life, not to mention that she is learning to defend herself with some solid foundations.

Mike K

My kids studied at Pentagon MMA for several years each. Vivek and the other instructors taught them how to defend themselves, how to defuse tense situations, how to stick up for kids being bullied, how to conduct themselves with maturity and respect for others, and how to be mentally and physically tough. All of these lessons transferred to their lives outside of MMA. They are respectful, confident, and mature young people now. In addition to being proficient at MMA, the mental and physical rigor and determination they learned at Pentagon has been critical in one of them transitioning to collegiate athletics and the other on the way to doing so. The discipline and focus have also led to high GPAs and a drive to succeed. I can't recommend Pentagon MMA highly enough. It's been central to the successful development of my kids.

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I’m new to learning Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and I wanted to learn the art from a gym that would push me to be great but also accept me as part of a family/team. I’m happy to say that Pentagon MMA is just the place, where I have found both and more. I’m still very new to the sport and the gym but I feel confident that I will be training at the gym for a while even though I live a decent distance away. Pentagon MMA has exceptional customer service, great instructors, and welcoming members! I highly recommend this gym to new and experienced martial artist OSU!

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I highly recommend Pentagon MMA. I've been taking the women's kickboxing classes since November. Staff members are warm, welcoming, and immediately made me feel comfortable. I love the instructors (Belinda and Patti are particularly fantastic) and the challenging and supportive environment. If you're on the fence, try a free class or two. I think you'll love it.

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I’ve been coming here for several months and I love it. I started coming because I felt bored with my usual workouts. Kickboxing is like no other and will kick your butt. The gym is so welcoming and there are people of all fitness levels and ages. The classes are tough but manageable and I’m getting in the best shape of my life. Highly recommend.

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Pentagon MMA has a range of different programs unlike many other gyms. It is wonderful for those who want to get fit and it's serious enough for those who want to fight. They have an amazing kids program as well

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There is no better place to train for your children or for you. Very Highly Recommended. Say hello when you visit !!

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I couldn't ask for a better fight home. This gym makes you feel like you are amongst friends and family. The staff are awesome, the coaches are awesome, and the atmosphere in the gym will give you that charge to put in that extra work!!

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Amazing place. The staff is beyond friendly and create a truly welcoming environment. At no point do you feel like an outsider. The training is top notch. Master Chon is a true professional and makes sure you're learning step by step. Walking into Pentagon MMA has been one of the best decisions of my life.

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Pentagon MMA is an excellent place to train! Vivek is an outstanding Muay Thai coach and their BJJ instructor, Sugi, is not only a BJJ Black belt but also a 2x Olympic Judoka. They are both friendly, welcoming, and great at what they do! If you are looking to start training in the Arlington area, this is definitely the place to go!

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I have seen, from far away, how Pentagon MMA has grown from its beginnings to what it has become today. Vivek, the owner, introduced me to Muay Thai a few years ago and ever since I can’t seem to stop. Vivek showed me the basics to this beautiful art, back then he would tell me about his dream of opening a gym where he could share his knowledge with everyone else. After a few years, I finally went to visit his accomplished dream, his own gym, I was truly impressed. Pentagon MMA is a true Muay Thai school, where people are learning how to perfect their moves. I haven’t yet seen anyone who is there to show off or to put anyone down, everyone is focused and is there to learn. Thank you Vivek for Muay Thai is now part of my life. Thank you Kru Chon for never letting me quit!

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I couldn't ask for a better place to train and call my second home! Pentagon MMA has hands down the best instructors. Master Chon and Master Vivek run an awesome Muay Thai program that keeps you fit and always learning more techniques. The gym has a "family vibe" atmosphere and everyone in the community is supportive of your fitness goals. I've already lost 20lbs thanks to PMMA's fight team, training, and encouragement. If you're looking to train with the best, you should definitely check out this gym.

MaryEllen H reviewed Pentagon Mixed Martial Arts
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I highly recommend Pentagon MMA. I've been taking the women's kickboxing classes since November. Staff members are warm, welcoming, and immediately made me feel comfortable. I love the instructors (Belinda and Patti are particularly fantastic) and the challenging and supportive environment. If you're on the fence, try a free class or two. I think you'll love it.

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Punishment vs. Discipline

Good behavior is a learning process for children, and we are their roadmap. Children usually behave per their own emotions and impulses. At the same time, being a parent is also a learning process and sometimes we rely on our own emotions and impulses to teach. Usually, that means we divert directly to punishments when a child misbehaves, missing a crucial opportunity to teach them. With that said, I am going to break down how to teach good behavior through discipline vs. punishment.

 

Let’s compare the two words and what they really mean:

  • Punishment – means to inflict pain or suffering as a penalty.
  • Discipline – means to teach.

 

It’s understandable that we as parents can get very frustrated when a child misbehaves, specifically when they make the same poor behavior choices over and over. At the same time, if we have clear goals to teach good behavior skills, then we can respond better. The better we respond, the better the results.

 

What are our goals for our children when they misbehave?

  • Our first goal is to get them to cooperate. This is primarily short-term.
  • The second goal that we don’t always consider is more long-term, and that is to make better choices without the threat of punishment or consequences.
  • To accomplish this, we need to consider both as often as possible. To accomplish this requires that you are patient, present, and intentional.

 

Now, let’s look at how punishment and discipline compare when accomplishing our goal of developing good behavior skills…

 

Punishment vs. Discipline:

  • Punishment may shut down a behavior, but if you teach your child, then they will develop self-discipline skills such as managing emotions and impulses.
  • When you discipline, you maintain a high relationship of trust and self-confidence.
  • When you punish, you build a proverbial wall and decrease one’s trust and self-confidence.

 

With that said, it makes sense to have a strategy for disciplining a child when they misbehave…

 

3-steps of discipline:

  1. CONNECT – this doesn’t mean to be permissible or passive, but to ensure that as you begin to set clear expectations, your child calms down emotionally and feels your loving/caring approach. When a child is upset, they are less likely to hear what you are saying. You must be patient so that you remain as calm as possible during the process, which is the hardest but most stress-free way to discipline.
  2. RE-DIRECT – list out what the poor behavior choice was as well as what the proper behavior choice is. This requires you to be present so that you can clearly calculate the desired outcome.
  3. REPAIR – discuss necessary steps on how to solve the current behavior problem, review better choices, and set ground rules should the poor behavior choices continue. This requires you to be intentional in your actions so that your long-term goals start to take shape.

 

Of course, this strategy won’t work all the time, so it’s also important to have a backup strategy. For starters, it’s better to say ‘consequences’ instead of ‘punishments’ so that your intentions are more goal-oriented versus pain-oriented.

 

When are consequences ok?

  • Only after you have worked through the 3 steps of discipline and still, your child intentionally disobeys the ground rules.

 

What type of consequence is ok?

  • One that matches the behavior. For example: if the child throws her iPad in an impulsive rage, then taking away her iPad for 48 hours is considered a reasonable consequence. (A week is a long period and could potentially trigger more anger and rage. The goal is to teach her, but also empower her to self-correct her behavior in the future. The smaller time frame will teach her that throwing things is not acceptable, but at the same time, you trust that she will re-correct this behavior within the next few days.)

 

What type of consequences are not ok?

  • One that is retroactive. For example: taking away good things isn’t the best consequence, such as martial arts lessons, which positively reinforces self-discipline. Although parents may think this is a good move because it’s an activity they like a lot and the pain of losing martial arts will teach them a valuable lesson, it’s doing the opposite. Pain infliction based on taking away something they like may cause more misbehavior and instill long-term damage in their trust for you. Also, strongly consider the fact that they lose all the positive benefits martial arts reinforces such as discipline, confidence, fitness, positive social interaction, and more.
  • One that decreases morale. For example: Public humiliation will leave a permanent footprint in the child’s brain, specifically a negative one. For every negative footprint left, self-esteem and morale decrease. The more children lack self-confidence and morale, the lesser chance you have of them believing in themselves to make proper behavior choices.

 

So, what do you do if you have a child that is misbehaving all the time with bits of rage, back-talking, and defying the rules?

  • You map out a productive strategy that includes a method for building proper behavior habits along with pre-determined consequences. For example: if you hit someone, then you must write a letter to the person you hit (or if you are younger, you must apologize face to face with a specific pre-framed apology).
  • If you throw something, then you lose a personal item for 48 hours.
  • If you show poor manners, then you must re-enact the proper manner if you are younger, or write a letter about having better manners. All of this should be pre-framed.
  • If you wake up late for school because you stayed up late the night before, then you must go to bed an hour earlier for the next two days.
  • At the same time, if you want consequences to work then you also need rewards. Reward your child when she goes a week without misbehaving. (This time frame may be shorter or longer depending on the child.) Also, the best rewards are not material things, but more relationship-building rewards. For example: she can pick to go to a family movie, or a special place for a family dinner.
  • My suggestion is to make a list of rewards and consequences so that you are prepared.

 

Now, what if you’ve tried this strategy and it doesn’t work?

  • For starters, be sure to give it time. If you are struggling with your child, then you must be reasonable on how long it will take to develop better behavior choices. It won’t happen overnight, and at the same time, she may get better and then fall off track again.
  • However, if you’ve tried these strategies for a solid month with no success, then the next step is to bring in an expert. Chances are there are some neurological deficiencies there that are interfering with her development.

 

Bottom line, the three biggest takeaways from this are:

  • Discipline is the better, more positively-productive method for instilling long-term behavior skills.
  • Connect, re-direct, and repair is the 3-step method for developing self-discipline skills.
  • When necessary, consequences are more productive than punishments. Avoid consequences that are retroactive or ones that decrease morale. Be sure to add rewards as well.

 

I hope this article sheds some positive light on how to help your child make better behavior choices!