Hudson Valley Parent

HVP August 2016

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6 Hudson Valley Parent n August 2016 Publisher TERRIE GOLDSTEIN Editor FELICIA HODGES Executive Assistant to the Publisher BRITTANY L. MORGAN Media Advisors CHRISTY OLIVIER ROBIN HOFFMAN Community Liaison PAMELA PERRY Traffic Manager PAM SOSCIA Intern JACQUELINE KAVANA Layout & Design ENGLE PRINTING also publishers of MY family MY family Hudson Valley Parent is published monthly by: The Professional Image Marketing & Public Relations Inc. 174 South Street • Newburgh, NY 12550 Phone: 845-562-3606 • Fax: 845-562-3681 This publication is copyrighted by the publisher. Reproduction without written permission of the publisher is prohibited. Hudson Valley Parent welcomes submissions, although we cannot accept responsibility for work submitted nor guarantee publication. A nyone who has received personal electronic corre- spondence from me knows that the phrase "Proud to Fight Like a Girl" has been part of my email signature for years. I put it there in an attempt to flatten some of the negativity associated with doing things "like a girl" - which usually is not meant as a compliment. When I was a kid, it seemed that doing some- thing "like a girl" meant the effort was weak or that the person throw- ing, hitting, screaming or running wasn't quite up to snuff. Doing something "like a girl" - even if you WERE a girl - was the ultimate insult. I haven't been a kid for quite some time, but training in/teaching martial arts and self-defense provide interesting coming-of-age parallels for me these days. Back in the days when I was just a karate student, I remember the many conversations I had with one of the other female students about what it meant to be a woman training in the testosterone-soaked environment that was my first karate dojo. Although we sometimes dis- agreed about whether our common experiences were inherently sexist, we both recognized that, either by design or by happenstance, we were sometimes treated differently than the males in the room. Especially when it came to sparring - because we're usually only allowed to duke it out against each other (so, unless there were more than two women training that day, we got to fight once or twice while the guys got to round-robin for half the class) - the seemingly unwritten as- sumption was that women are weak, not weakER, which made it OK to, well, treat us "like a girl." Girls are too often discouraged from trying things that are physical- ly challenging. Back in grade school, boys my age seemed to be able to wrestle and rough-house constantly while girls were expected to stay clean, avoid the fray or just simply watch. Imagine separating a litter of puppies by sex and letting the males practice play fighting and chasing toys while preventing the females from doing the same. Crazy, right? But it seems that's exactly what we try do to young humans. That's why the idea of young girls involving themselves in con- tact sports is an amazing one to me. Writing about martial artist, Tanner; flag football player, Giuliana; ice hockey enthusiast, Shaye; and rugby aficionado, Bailey for the article on girls and contact sports was espe- cially cool. Find out more about how they got started on page 16. Statistics point out that too large a percentage of girls who start athletic pursuits in grade school quit when they hit puberty, so I applaud these young ladies for their decision to even go out and try such challeng- ing activities. I applaud their parents for the encouragement as well. Way to do the daggone thing, la- dies! Keep on doing it like the bosses you are. Like a boss! FELICIA HODGES Editor's Journal

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