Program: The Strike Back Fitness program was created to provide kids and teens with Down Syndrome (DS) a safe and accepting environment that will allow them the opportunity to participate in physical activities and exercise. Strike Back Fitness is a low impact fitness program structured and tailored to the needs of the Down Syndrome population but is also open to the public and to kids and teens of all abilities.
Students in the Strike Back Fitness program will be introduced to the following:
- Tailored classes specific to low impact physical exercise / activities that will increase muscle strength and eliminate low tone.
- Increase in confidence and self-esteem – trying something new in a safe and accepting environment.
- Ability to socialize with peers and form relationships.
Strike Back Martial Arts
55 East Main Street
Webster, NY 14580
Kids ages 5-11
Teens and Tweens ages 12-19
45 minutes / class
9 Week Session
Teen / Tween class - Tuesday 6:00 - 6:45
Winter Session: January: 23 and 30 / February: 6, 13 and 27 / March: 6, 13, 20 and 27 (dates may be subject to change)
Kids class - Thursday 6:00 - 6:45
Winter Session: January: 18 and 25 / February : 1, 8, and 15 / March: 1, 8, 15 and 22 (dates may be subject to change)
$200.00 / session*
Program is eligible for Family cash reimbursement
*A $25 non-refundable deposit is required to secure a spot. This deposit will be credited toward your final payment.
The instructors and owners (Dave Nicchitta & Mike Palmer) of Strike Back Martial Arts have provided programs for over 3 years to the Autism and special needs community developing programs such as Jujitsu Buddies, Core 4 Fitness and No Gi Jujitsu. We are the only martial arts school in Monroe County to offer such programs. We have worked closely with organizations such as AutismUp and MATT (Managing Autism Together Today).
In Mike Palmer’s (day-time) professional career, he has worked in the Human Service field for over 10 years for a not for profit organization supporting individuals with disabilities. Mike has worked with the Autism population as well as other developmentally disabled individuals. Mike has provided years of direct support with participants in his programs and has also managed several programs that assist in skill building such as advocacy, empowerment, attaining personal goals and independence. All of this experience has given Mike an expertise with the ASD/ DD population. Mike currently holds the title “Community Services Supervisor” and manages a Certified Day Program Facility as well as a Community Habilitation Program. Over the course of Mike’s tenure providing direct care service and managing programs, Mike has attended multiple trainings on ASD and many other DD diagnoses. Mike has accumulated an extremely diverse set of skills through constant strategy trainings, personal interactions and the general study of this population.
Dave’s experience with ASD and those who have it became very personal for him and his wife when, in the summer of 2011, their son Christopher, age 4, received an Autism Spectrum diagnosis. Like other parents whose children are newly diagnosed, it made Dave want to educate himself about ASD to help with his job as a parent and advocate for his son. This new perspective also helped Dave in his role as a police officer when dealing with individuals in the community. In an attempt to bring martial arts into Christopher’s life, as Dave had done with his daughter, Dave enrolled Christopher in a karate program. This program was not a good fit for him. It wasn’t until recently that Dave’s son expressed an interest in “going to class” like his sister. Christopher was introduced to “Sensei Palmer” and started attending the Junior Jujitsu program regularly. Mike’s ability to communicate with Christopher and make him feel comfortable has given Christopher the confidence to do things he previously may not have done. You can see the positive results: it is evident in the pride Christopher has in himself when he accomplishes something new in class. Exposing martial arts to someone with ASD and seeing the benefits that occur from that experience firsthand made Dave want to offer a martial arts program to other kids with ASD who may benefit too but have nowhere to go. Dave has volunteered in organizations such as Special Olympics, The School of the Holy Childhood and UNYFEAT (now AutismUP).