The Karate Kid (Kung Fu Kid) Premiers and The Martial Arts Industry Holds Its Breath


“Wax on Wax Off”

Thousands of martial arts enthusiasts, practitioners and instructors are eagerly awaiting the release of the Karate Kid this weekend. For those of us who have been in the industry for a while and uphold the traditional values, we’re hoping and praying that this movie will have a similar effect as the original Karate Kid starring Pat Morita (Miyagi) and Ralph Macchio (Daniel).

In the mid 80s the martial arts industry saw a massive influx of children into local martial arts schools due to a fundamental shift in the popular perception of martial arts.

“Sweep the leg!”

The original Karate Kid captured the hearts and minds of audiences everywhere with the classic new kid on the block underdog story. It was the Charles Atlas 97 pound weakling gets his revenge against the bully with some clever twists and deeper lessons.

“An enemy confronts you he deserves no mercy.”, John Kreese (Martin Kove) of the Cobra Kai dojo

Most importantly, the original Karate Kid movie demonstrated the dignity, wisdom and life-affirming values found in classical martial arts when taught by a caring and qualified teacher. This is a far cry from the violent image many of today’s parents hold of martial arts from more recent promotion efforts of events like the UFC and cage fighting.

Rarely promoted are the lessons of good manners, compassion, honor and restraining self control, the hallmark of a classical (traditional) martial arts education.

Instead of ego driven, glory-seeking, knuckle-dragging inter-male violence jockeying for position on the social ladder, the Karate Kid revealed that our biggest battle is within ourselves. The wise Master Myagi helped Daniel Larusso learn that our greatest opponent is our own fears, insecurities and self-doubt. When we begin to understand those things, we are better equipped to handle other challenges in life such as bullies.

When the first Karate Kid demonstrated the respect, honor and age-old classical martial arts lesson of “Karate (Martial Arts) is for defense only”, mothers everywhere saw how Martial Arts helps improve confidence, attitude, and develop inner strength to avoid fighting. The coming of age tale showed how the mild-mannered Miyagi used his brains over brawn to stop the bullying and fighting while helping Daniel earn respect. The teen character Daniel ultimately learns that one can find honor in avoiding a fight and winning others respect.

Through the teaching of his eccentric mentor Miyagi, Daniel learns not only karate, but also important life lessons, such as the importance of focus, balance, dedication, hard work and the belief that martial arts training is as much about training the spirit as the body.

Try us and Get 2 Free Movie Passes To The Karate Kid


My hope is that the new Karate Kid movie starring Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan restores some of the dignity and honor to martial arts. I hope that viewers see the education and martial arts life affirming values, rather than making a silly mockery with clown-like antics or unnecessary violent messages.

Perhaps it is overly optimistic to place such high hopes as this on a film simply designed to entertain and sell movie tickets and popcorn.

“It’s not how many times you get knocked down, it’s how many times you get up.”

However, I’m still holding out hope that the film can recapture some of that magic in a bottle as the original Karate Kid film and deliver a positive message that resonates with children and parents alike.

Martial Arts stands ready with the solutions to many modern-day problems for children including: handling bullies, resolving conflicts peacefully, combating the pediatric obesity epidemic and instilling patriotism, manners, integrity, honor and respect.

o Try our program now and get 2 Free Passes to the Karate Kid Movie
o Click here for info on How to Handle a Bully Training
o Click here for info on Summer Karate Kung Fu Taekwondo Camp

Tel. 602.896.8721
USA Martial Arts PV, Scottsdale, Phoenix
Located at the SW corner of Tatum & Greenway Roads
John Nottingham

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