Chuck Norris. Bruce Lee. Pat Morita and the Karate Kid. These are characters we’ve relied on for many years to give us a look into the world of martial arts. We encouraged our kids to learn kung-fu, karate, jujitsu, and a myriad of other martial arts in years past to help them learn to defend themselves, as well as to learn other character traits that we’ve all come to value. And we rewarded them when they did well, and held back rewards from them when they didn’t do as well as we might have wanted. And there was always next season, when they had another shot at trying again.
Actually, karate, kung fu, tae quondo and all of the traditional martial arts we know and love are pretty much the same when it comes to techniques–although there are some new drills and rituals practiced today, the world of martial arts as we knew it back in the 70s and 80s have remained the same. However, a new form of martial arts has slowly caught fire and is growing fast.
According to the WOMA TV website, this all began sometime around Friday night, November 12, 1993, when a brazilian by the name of Royce Gracie took on a number of men with a style known as Brazilian Jujitsu. This style really worked, because he floored all these men. He and his family members all developed a technique that focused more on groundwork skills, instead of reliance solely on thethe traditional kicking in traditional martial arts competitions.
With the rising popularity of ground strategies such as these, it is predicted that in the future, the kung fu fighting singer Carl Douglas celebrated in 1974 will be a thing of the past. To quote the WOMA TV website, kids interested in the martial arts will grow up with the underlying thought that what isn’t performed in the cage will not work.
In the future, boxers will enter the MMA, or Mixed Martial Arts, thanks to the influences of people like Ronda Rousey and Holly Holm. They will also enter the Olympics, and the more they win, the more popular they will become here in the United States.
Rise of Russian Influences
Russian Sambo is poised to become a very popular Olympic sport. It is now a very close relative to the American MMA as we know it right now. In the future, however, we will see highly skilled combat Sambo athletes enter the cage and this will be a turning point for the Martial Arts as a whole. This will play a role in the disconnect that’s already forming between the present and the past.
Grading System As We Know It Will Be Gone
Remember the days when belts were earned for actual effort rather than just mere participation or showing up? Those days will be gone in the years to come, when children who take Martial Arts will receive belts, such as the well-respected black belt–merely for showing up and participation. Many who actually put in the work, learned all that the masters had to teach them, will feel a sense of being cheated as they watch those who basically took up space receive the same reward as the ones who actually did the work and won the contests won.
Virtual Martial Arts Games
As the years to come unfold, the Virtual Arts will take off. A person will be able to fight agaist anyone on Earth during televised games watched by TV by legions of fans around the world. It will all be a push-button contest, one without physical contact or injuries, and no real actual training. The key to winning will be for the “fighters” to practice the moves on the video games that they will be using to entertain the viewers.
In short, to quote the SelfDefenceExpert website, the martial arts of the future will be characterized by a lack of boundaries, a lack of traditional styles, and a lack of anything that made the traditional martial arts special. It will be more about getting numbers of kids into classes to help the bottom line of the schools that teach the martial arts, and more about getting these children through training with minimal injuries. Gone will be the days when enrollment into the martial arts will be about character development, as the Karate Kid underwent as part of his training.