The Best Gift for Grandparents Day? How About Cane Fu Lessons?

Edward Pacetti, 72, right, demonstrates his cane fu skills on Cane Masters instructor Merle McAlpin.

Tomorrow (Sunday) is National Grandparents Day. If your grandparents (or your kids’ grandparents) aren’t the type that want an extra pair of slippers to shuffle around in, how about a gift certificate for cane fu lessons? Or maybe a specialized (and fairly dangerous) ass-whooping cane?

Cane fu,  a new fighting technique created by 65-year-old Mark Shuey Jr., is for Grandparents Who Kick Ass and Take Names. And for those who don’t even know yet that they can kick butt.

“You can carry it anywhere you want. It’s a medical device, so it’s always with you,” cane fu creator Mark Shuey Jr. told 20/20′s Chris Cuomo. “If you carry a knife, you’ve got to take it out of the sheath. If you carry a gun, you have to take it out of the holster. [With] a cane, you’re already locked and loaded.”

Using proper training and the leverage of the cane, seniors can learn to take down a much sprier foe, reports ABC News.

Sweep the leg, Pop-Pop! Sweep the leg!

Mr. Shuey, a martial arts expert and world champion, created cane fu when he saw his elderly father refusing to use his cane because of the stigma it created. Around that time, several elderly people near his brother’s house in Palm Springs, Fla., were robbed while carrying their canes.

“I got this epiphany to go out there and let people know what a cane really can do. It can help them,” Shuey said.

That epiphany led to the development of a specialized martial arts program, tailored to seniors and the disabled. There are now more than 300 instructors around the country teaching the cane fu method. You can find a list of Cane Masters dojos here.

In 2010, the Warrior Cane Project was started, teaching the method to help with physical rehabilitation and build morale for American servicemembers wounded in combat.

Mr. Shuey has also created a line of custom-made wooden canes, which are sold on his website. The canes he makes provide more punch than a store-bought aluminum cane, and also can be fitted with an array of nasty additions such as sharp hooks and ridges if someone needs to dole out maximum pain.

When I need a cane (which will definitely happen sooner than later, considering the sounds coming from my knees when I walk up the stairs), I’m totally getting the oak Cobra cane with lifelike eyes. People will think twice about messing with me when they figure I’m affiliated with the Cobra Kai and/or Slytherin House.

(Photo Credits: ABC News, Cane Masters)

Read more from Joslyn at Babble Pets and at her blog, stark. raving. mad. mommy. You can also follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

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