- "Inner peace, focus, balance. These are just some of the skills that you will master when you join Miyagi-Do Karate. I'm Daniel LaRusso, and before I was the number-one auto dealer in the Valley... I was two-time All Valley under-18 champion. Now, you can learn the secrets of Okinawan karate, true karate, by joining the Miyagi-Do Team. Don't be a snake in the grass, be a champion. Tweet us at #TeamMiyagiDo. And all lessons are free. That's right, free. Because at Miyagi-Do, it's not about the money. It's about the karate."
- ―Daniel LaRusso[src]
Miyagi-Do Karate (宮城道, "the way of Miyagi") is the Karate Dojo founded by Mr. Miyagi in the original The Karate Kid. The dojo is now run by Miyagi's student Daniel LaRusso. The Miyagi-Do motto is "when the fight comes to you, you have to be ready to fight back."
- "Miyagi-Do is about defending yourself and protecting others. Not seeking credit."
- ―Daniel LaRusso to Robby Keene[src]
Miyagi-Do Karate is the opposite of Cobra Kai. It focuses on internal peace and focus, and only advocates using Karate for defense. Miyagi-Do uses Kata as the basis for its teachings. Despite being a Dojo, Miyagi only ever had one student, Daniel LaRusso, whom he trained throughout his life though Daniel stopped competing after 1985. Despite this, Miyagi did go on to train Julie Pierce in 1994.
After Miyagi's death in 2011, Daniel became confused and began to stray from his friend's teachings. Despite this, Daniel returned to his roots and re-opened Miyagi-Do with one student, Robby Keene, and claimed that he was going to get more. This suggests that Daniel wants to use Miyagi's teachings to stop Cobra Kai's more aggressive stance. He soon gets more students which includes his daughter Sam and a bullied kid named Demetri. However, following a school brawl which resulted in Sam being seriously injured and Cobra Kai star Miguel Diaz being rendered unconscious and in critical condition, Daniel ends Miyagi-Do, and it is unknown if it will return in the future.
- 空手無先手: Karate for Defense Only.
- Literally: Karate Mu Sente (Karate Doesn't Make the First Move)
- 先正其心: First learn rule number 1.
- Literally: Saki Sei Sono Kokoro (Take the Previous Rule to Heart)
- "In order to fully learn Miyagi-Do Karate, you have to unlearn your misconceptions about what constitutes training."
- ―Daniel LaRusso[src]
While both teachers differ slightly with the lessons. The core of Miyagi-Do is relatively the same.
Miyagi's Way of Training:
These are the lessons taught from Miyagi to Daniel.
Before officially starting training, a Miyagi-Do teacher first must make sure their student is ready. In turn the Miyagi-Do Student must give a direct answer. For example, when Daniel first answers the question with "I guess so.", Miyagi makes the following statement:
"Walk on road. Walk right side: safe. Walk left side: Safe. Walk middle, sooner or later: you get squished, just like grape. Here Karate same thing. Either you Karate do yes, or Karate do no. You Karate do 'Guess so.', just like grape."
When given a direct yes, The Miyagi-Do teacher must make a sacred pact with their student which is as follows:
"I promise to teach Karate. That's my part. You promise to learn. I say, you do. No questions. That's your part."
Once the deal is made, the lessons begin.
Lesson 1: Wax On Wax Off
The first lesson in Miyagi-Do Karate. First wash cars, then wax them. Each motion must be done with your right hand applying the wax in a circle clockwise. Then wash the wax off with your left hand. While doing so, it's very important to breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. The amount of cars and the time it takes to finish them all, vary between student to student. But roughly it takes from day to night. Once finished, the student should be able to go home, rest and get ready for the next lesson.
Lesson 2: Sand the Floor
The second lesson of Miyagi-Do Karate. Sand the floor. Using Japanese sanders and the deck of the Dojo, each motion should be done in a circle with your left and right hand. Similar to Lesson 1, only the circles are the opposites. Right hand should be counter-clockwise and left hand should be clockwise. Of course like the first lesson don't forget to breathe. Like the first lesson, this lesson will conclude overnight. Since the student started off with Lesson One the day before, at this point the work would make their shoulders sore. After it's finished, the student should go home, rest and get ready for the next lesson.
Challenge 1: Catch Fly with Chopsticks
This is less of an official lesson and more of a challenge that one can do at any point of the training. The purpose of the challenge is based on a statement Miyagi mentioned:
"Man who catch fly with Chopstick, accomplish anything."
The goal is to take a pair of chopsticks into your hands and try to catch any stray flies with them. While not an official lesson, it's a confidence booster and it helps train in focus and precision.
Lesson 3: Paint the Fence
- "Oh, okay, I get it. You're teaching me muscle memory. Do it a bunch of times, develop unconscious karate techniques."
- ―Demetri to Daniel LaRusso[src]
The third lesson of Miyagi-Do Karate. Paint the fence. Using an ordinary paint brush, plus some cans to reapply, you must paint the fence of the dojo. To do this lesson you must stand in front of the fence and move the brush up and down against it, with focus on the wrist. For the small boards, use your left hand, for the big boards right hands. The lesson isn't over until both sides of the whole fence. Much like the previous two lessons, you must not forget to breathe. The work should be done by night as usual. Once finished, the student should go home, rest and get ready for the next lesson.
Lesson 4: Paint the House
The fourth lesson of Miyagi-Do Karate. Paint the fence. Much like Lesson 3, you need a paintbrush and cans. However since you're painting the house, you also need a ladder. Unlike Lesson 3, instead of moving up and down, you move your hands side to side, when painting. Like the previous lessons, don't forget to breathe. The work should be done by night like the others. At this point, the student should be phyiscally sore and their patience wearing thin. Believing that their teacher is using them for cheap labor.
Lesson 5: SHOW!!
The fifth lesson. Show!! At this point, you should be at your limit and angry with the teacher. When you vent about learning nothing the past four days. However, the teacher, instead demands you to show the movements you were taught in those chores. You comply and after some course correction, you realize the past four days you learned the following.
- The basic blocks of Miyagi-Do Karate.
- Strengthening and conditioning your body.
- Muscle Memory.
After realizing what you've learned you bow to each other. Always looking each other in the eyes. Afterwich the student goes home, rests and gets ready for the next lesson.
Lesson 6: Learn Balance
The sixth lesson. Learn Balance. This lesson requires you and your teacher to go near a large body of water. An ocean, a lake, whatever is convenient. Go especially at a time when the tide is coming in. Once there, stand in the midst of it, and try to kick while being hit with the waves. The goal being, to try to do so without falling over. Once mastered the student, should dry off, go home, rest and get ready for the next lesson.
Challenge 2: Crane Kick
The Crane Kick is one of Miyagi-Do's well known techniques. To learn it, you must first find a stump to to stand on. Said stump must be narrow in diameter so that you can only stand on it with one leg. You raise one leg up while raising your arms, imitating the form of a crane or a flamingo with spread wings. You flap your arms down and jump up raising your lowerd leg into a front kick, while your raised leg falls and lands on the stump. If you can do this without falling, you mastered it.
Lesson 7: Fishing Review
The seventh lesson. Fishing Review. This particular lesson is meant to accumulate lessons 1 - 6 in the most peculiar yet effective ways. You go to a lake by fishing boat, mostly provided by the Miyagi-Do teacher. You then stand on the bow of the boat and try not to tip it over as you balance yourself on it. Once well balanced, you practice your blocks without tipping the boat or scaring the local fish. Be aware though, the Miyagi-Do teacher will be tempted to tip the boat over with you on it. Once a certain amount of time is spent reviewing the moves, the student is free to go home, rest and prepare for the next lesson.
Lesson 8: Punch
The 8th Lesson. Punch. In this lesson, the Miyagi-Do teacher is dressed in protective clothing. To learn this punch, you have to focus the power of your whole body into an inch space the knuckle of your fist. To do so, you twist your feet, legs, hips waist, chest, shoulders and arms into your fist. All while making a kiai (HIYA!!!), sound upon impact. It is required you practice slow, so that it will come natural to you later on. Don't fool around, don't do the Ali Shuffle. The Miyagi-Do teacher, will most likely trip you if he has to if it makes you pay attention. Once finished, the student can go home, rest and get ready for the next lesson.
Lesson 9: Focus
The 9th Lesson. Focus. In this lesson the student is tasked with another chore. Much like the beginning lessons. In this case, your tasked to build walls for an extra room on the dojo. To do so, you need to place wooden boards side by side and secure them by nailing them with a manual hammer. However there's a catch. You have to hit each nail all the way through with one strike. Which requires focus, strength and precision. If you find yourself out of focus, practice the following technique: Close your eyes. Place your hands together in a praying motion at the center of your chest. Breathe out of your mouth, while pushing your hands forwards. Breathe in through your nose and pull your hands back inwards. Breathe out only this time push your hands upwards. Breathe in again and pull your hands inwards. Repeat the process until you feel better and more focused, then continue the task. Once finished, the student is free to go home, rest and get ready for the next lesson.
Lesson 10: Sparring
The 10th Lesson. Sparring. At this point, you the student, would wonder why you learned so few lessons, in comparison to a more expensive Dojo. Which the Miyagi-Do teacher would respond, by stating that each lesson learned is based on quality of what you know, not quantity. At this point you learned enough that you can go into a sparring match with your teacher. If you are able to land a blow on him, the lesson is over. However, there is still more to teach after.
Lesson 11: Drum Technique
The 11th lesson. Drum Technique. The drum technique is not just a lesson, but also the secret to Miyagi-Do Karate. The basis, is based off a principal for defense, as stated by Miyagi:
"Best way to avoid punch. No be there."
First things first, you need a Den-Den Daiko or Japanese Pellet Drum. Play around with it for a few minutes to get an understanding of it. Then go with your teacher to a location where there are ropes with hooks on it. In the case of Daniel and Miyagi's lesson, they travelled to Sato's Cannery in Okinawa. You stand in the designated spot, and wait for your teacher to drop the rope against you. Then once your teacher let's go, you twist your body either left or right, while raising the following hand up. It should be in a manner similar to the pellets striking the drum. If done right, that hook would hit the wall, not you. It is also possible to work a counter-punch into the technique, which Daniel incorperated. Once mastered, the student is ready for the next lesson.
Lesson 11.5: Primary Target
This lesson is a short one hence it's not a full lesson. However it comes in handy when the situation calls for it. All you need is any item that you can fit in your hand. A cloth, wallet, you name it. Whether it's grabbed and dropped by your opponent or "Accidentally" dropped by you, upon picking it up, you are well within range of your opponent's groin. Which you strike as hard as you can. Giving you ample time to run as far away from them as you can.
Lesson 12: Miyagi-Do Kata
Lesson 12. Miyagi-Do Kata. The foundation of Miyagi-Do Karate and the final lesson. This Kata, is based around the workings of the Bonsai Tree. You start with your fists pointing down to the ground, your roots. Then you move your arms up to your chest and push them outwards, while opening your hands. The palms facing upwards as you do. Representing the branches growing and the leaves blooming. Then you raise your right hand up to your forehead with your left hand pointing downwards. Your body turning and facing right as you do so. Then alternate positions, switching your hands and your stance so you're facing left. Representing the tree growing up and the limbs waving in the wind. Then repeat the pattern until it becomes a natural flow to you. You have now mastered Miyagi-Do Karate.
Daniel's Way of Training:
These are the lessons taught from Daniel LaRusso to Robby Keene, Samantha and future Miyagi-Do students. While some are similar to Miyagi's, Daniel himself has added his own spin to them as well as incorperated never before seen lessons and moves Miyagi has taught him.
Lesson 1: Wax on Wax off
See Miyagi's Way above.
Lesson 2: Raise/Lower the Flag
The second lesson. Raise/Lower the Flag. This lesson requires a flagpole, a rope and a flag. The goal is to raise your arm high enough and fully extended. Then grab the rope and pull it down to raise the flag with one hand while alternating with the other hand. Repeat the process until the flag is raised. This lesson is meant to exercise your arms, as well as improve your hand eye cooridiniation. Once raised, continue the other lessons until you are needed to lower the flag.
Lesson 3: Wash the Windows
The third lesson. Wash the Windows. Similar to Paint the House, the lesson requires you to move your hands side to side while moving a squeegee across the windows. But much like Paint the Fence and Wax On Wax Off, the motions are dependent on which hand the squeegee is in. Once done, you move on to the next lesson.
Lesson 4: Jack up Car
The fourth lesson. Jack up Car. In this lesson, you need a car and a jack. Unlike the traditional way, in which you use the jack with both hands. Instead you turn around facing the car and get down bending one knee down and one knee up, while moving the lever down in reps. Pushing your down knee along with your leg with the arm. This lesson is meant to strengthen your legs and arms. Once mastered, you move on to the next lesson.
Lesson 5: Sweep the Floor
The fifth lesson. Sweep the Floor. All you need is a large push broom. As you sweep the floor, move your front foot fowarard and follow with your rear foot until you reach the end of the room. Then pivot with your front foot on the ground until you turned 180 degrees. Then repeat. This lesson is meant to help you practice your footwork and dodging. Once the floor is all swept, move onto the next lesson.
Lesson 6: Staple the File.
The sixth lesson. Staple the File. A simple exercise. Stack some papers together and put them under a stapler. Only instead of just pressing it, you strike the stapler with your palm. Similar to the Focus lesson, but mostly it's used to condition your hands. Once all the papers are filed, move on to the next lesson.
Lesson 7: Show!!
See Miyagi's Way above.
Lesson 8: Miyagi-Do Kata
See Miyagi's Way above.
Lesson 9: Punch
See Miyagi's Way above.
Lesson 10: The Tree
The tenth lesson. Much like Learn Balance, it involves learning to kick without falling. In this case, you are to stand ontop of a fallen log and practice every kick. If you fall over, you have to go back up and try it again until you do them all. Once done return to your teacher. Only he knows the way out of the forest.
Challenge 1: The Double Kick
According to Daniel, this was one of the last moves, Miyagi taught him how to do. He describes it as balancing your whole body on one hand, allowing both your feet to propell foward, kicking your opponent. Because Daniel was never able to master it himself, there was no proper lesson to how to do so. It wasn't until Robby, figured out through his skills as a skateboarder, how to master the technique. As skateboarders naturally have to balance their bodies on one part for trick moves. Master Skateboarding techniques and you master the Double Kick.
Lesson 11: The Wheel Technique
This lesson requires two Miyagi-Do students, standing in a circle facing each other. The object is to move and perform the moves, within the circle in sync with each other, so that they can be a strong defence for one and other. Originally this training requires the two to stand in a circle of sand, but thanks to a new instalment within the dojo. A floating circular deck originally designed to balance Banzai's from each other, the training also requires you to keep balance while doing said forms. It also works to help sense where your partner is going, through the slightest imbalance of their movements and yours. Once completed, you and your partner should be able to defend yourself against Multiple opponents.
Lesson 12: Lift the Stone
Improvised by Daniel LaRusso as a lesson in teamwork. Two students are required to combine their intelligence, strength and trust to lift a large stone knocked over from Cobra Kai vandalism. This will help both strengthen their will and help them work better together.
Lesson 13: Shochu-Geiko
This lesson is a Japanese exercise involving training during the hottest days of the year. The object of the training is to learn how to adapt to the changes in temperature and use them to anticipate the moves of your opponent. While the Miyagi-Do Student will train in the traditional variation, training in hot temparatures, Daniel LaRusso made an improvised variation based off Kon Geiko: involving extreme cold. The main exercise in either temperature, involves a ring of 9 students with the chosen Miyagi-Do 10th pupil in the center. When the number of the student is called, the corresponding student attacks the center student without warning prompting them to defend themselves. Once mastered, the student will be ready to take on multiple opponents while adapting to the extreme temperatures.
- Daniel LaRusso (First and former student, and current Sensei; 1984-1985)
- Julie Pierce (Second and former student; 1994)
- Robby Keene
- Samantha LaRusso
- few former Cobra Kai students
- It is theorized that Mr. Miyagi and Daniel's style is based on Goju-ryu, one of the main Okinawan karate styles. In The Karate Kid Part III Daniel performs an altered version of Goju-ryu's Seiyunchin kata. The real life founder of Goju-ryu was an Okinawan man named Chojun Miyagi. In addition The Karate Kid screenwriter Robert Mark Kamen studied Goju-ryu in his youth. While this is not conclusive it has led many to believe that Mr. Miyagi's art was based on Goju-ryu.
- The kata Miyagi-Do teaches is a modified version of the real life kata, Seienchin, a kata taught in many Okiawan Karate styles including Goju-Ryu (the style that inspired The Karate Kid).
- While it wasn't shown in The Next Karate Kid, the dojo was mentioned by Miyagi. When he offers to watch over Julie Pierce, he sends her grandmother Louisa Pierce to take care of the Dojo garden in an effort to give them both breathing space.