Patience Young Grasshopper – Where did it come from? What does it mean?


So what show did patience Young Grasshopper come from? What does it mean? And how can you celebrate this awesome phrase? We’ll answer all these questions today!

What Show did it Come From?

I thought for sure that this phrase had come for the movie The Karate Kid, but I was wrong! It happens. The phrase patience Young Grasshopper actually comes from a television show called Kung Fu.  Kwai Chang Caine was played by David Caradine who’s character often thought back to his earlier years training as a Shaolin Monk in Asia.  It was during this training that his blind Chinese master would say “Patience Young Grasshopper.”

You can see an example of this training with Master Poe in the video below:

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What does Patience Grasshopper mean? 

Patience Young Grasshopper as a phrase used outside the fictional setting of Kung Fu the television show, means simply that “you need to develop more patience” and or “Be patient” in that moment.

Also according to the website Life is Symbolic grasshoppers symbolize several things in Asia. Including good luck, virtue, happiness, and longevity.  In China specifically son’s are favourable, so maybe Master Poe thought of him as a blessing.  The Chinese also kept grasshoppers as pets, so maybe Master Poe just thought of Caine as his pet. Personally I find this theory more amusing.

This is just me theorizing, but grasshopper could also just be a symbolic way of saying beginner or newbie.

How do you celebrate this icon phrase?

Are your co-workers constantly saying this famous phrase to you?  Why not show them who’s boss, and wear a Patience Grasshopper T-shirt to work! Or perhaps you could wear the shirt to the gym to remind you that big gains don’t come fast.  Whatever the situation a Patience Grasshopper shirt is a great conversation starter.

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But which of these two shirts should you pick-up? The Milkier’s black shirt below, or the blue CafePress which also comes in white. I’d suggest to go with the blue CafePress shirt actually.  The black shirt below is a little hard to see on screen, and I believe it would be that same in person.  Whereas the blue shirt above has a great drawing of a grasshopper that is almost cartoony, and also has the cool “Patience” font which reminds me of Asia or martial arts for some reason.

How do you Get more Patience ?

But how do you go about actually gaining warrior patience like a Shaolin monk in the twenty first century? I’d suggest you checkout the book by Mark Divine called “Way of the Seal.” The book will teach you how Commander Divine used patience and determination to get through Navy Seal training, and deal with the many mentally taxing situations a Navy Seal is placed in on the battlefield. Check out reviews of the book here.


So there you have it! More information about the patience grasshopper phrase then you ever wanted to know. Until next time stay healthy, and stay geeky!

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