Today\’s video games seem to have extra layers of gore and violence. It is never surprising to see young kids\’ karate chopping their way through a grocery store or mimicking some rudimentary king fu moves they get from a dueling video game on their way to school. Since this is a mainstream way children are exposed to various martial arts styles, it is worth knowing more. So, what are the martial arts styles used in Mortal Kombat and other video games? Here we explore the different forms used and make a side-by-side comparison between martial arts and video games.
Mortal Kombat started in 1992 and grew to be incredibly popular, showing up in arcades everywhere. The take ‘em down style of fighting changed forever. Spawning more sequels than one can count, movies have adopted these fighting styles based on martial arts. Mortal is specifically designed to have two opponents, each with different strengths and powers, fighting to the bitter end. As players push and tap on the controls to maneuver their fighters, the body often ends up moving along with the character because the game\’s design is engaging.
How Is Martial Arts Training Similar to Mortal Kombat Fighting?
This is the question most parents ask when considering martial arts training for their children. Although some of the techniques are common to certain forms of martial arts, the level of activity that most students achieve never reaches that level of intensity. The best studios have sparring, which is student-to-student or student-to-sensei practice on the mat for those at higher skill levels. There is never a free for all fight in any studio. Family-focused studios train young children through young adults the techniques and mind and body balance that is unique to excellent martial arts training.
Contrary to what parents might see on the video screen, the sweep or kick may slightly resemble a specific martial art style, but training in martial arts is gradual, and each student progresses at their own pace. In reputable studios, students are allowed to spar once they consistently display the characteristics required of martial art students. An absence of character building in martial arts training should be a red flag for families looking to enroll their children.
Martial arts, at their core, only work when the mind is focused and the body balanced. Masters in martial arts show exemplary character, including respect for self and others, body control, mind and body connection, and technique. Every martial art offers a slight variance of techniques and forms typical of that style. An effective way to experience multiple types of martial arts is to attend a free class at a local studio that offers a comprehensive mixed martial arts program. When multiple styles are used, the students get the best of each and can decide if they prefer one type over another.
What Styles of Martial Arts Are Used in Mortal Kombat?
Naturally, players want to know which discipline is used in Mortal Kombat. Before we get to that, there are nearly 100 characters that can be played in Mortal Kombat, and every character has unique traits and strengths! To make characters more mystical, some fantasy elements can cover up some foundational techniques.
The most familiar techniques used in Mortal Kombat are Taekwondo, Jeet Kune Do, Boxing, Wrestling, Ju Jitsu, and Ninjutsu. The character Sonya Blade uses head kicks as her primary defense as she begins each match in the Taekwondo stance. The character that uses Jeet Kune Do is Liu Kang and is thought to be loosely based on Bruce Lee. The character, Jax, uses wrestling moves on his opponents, and the character is of American descent as he is presented as patriotic in the game. Ju-Jitsu is used by the character Raiden who uses strikes and tries to get his opponents to the ground, as typical in Jiu-Jitsu. Ninjutsu is the most common martial arts style in some of the most popular characters in Mortal Kombat. Scorpion and Sub Zero remain the most used characters in this popular video game.
It is undeniable that playing Mortal Kombat or other combat-style games has piqued interest in martial arts training. Although this may give parents pause, formal training in a studio is taught at appropriate levels for different age groups, sparring is closely supervised, and protective gear is worn to ensure the safety of participants. If a child shows interest in martial art style movement, seize the opportunity to get them involved in something they may genuinely enjoy! SwiftKick Martial Arts (Carlsbad and Rancho Bernardo locations) offers the most comprehensive martial arts program in San Diego County. SwiftKick offers masterful instructors and a solid vision of guiding students to their best selves through unique and engaging classes. Sign up for a free class to see what martial arts can do for your child!