Which martial art?

CommadantCipher's picture
Rank: Baboon | 119

Hi guys,

Over the last few days, I have been thinking of which martial art to study. I have done Tae Kwon Do in the past, but I have stopped praticing it years ago. Now I have been thinking of taking up another martial art in my spare time. Any recommendations? I have never done wrestling or anything of this sort, so I wonder which martial art I, as a 24-year-old can pick up. I am not aspiring to break into UFC, rather I want something good for my body and to be able to defend myself in extremis.

Comments (22)

Mar 22, 2020

Boxing

Array

    • 1
Mar 23, 2020

This! Have done Aikido and Sanda myself, so I'm a bit biased for the Azns, but you can't deny the beauty of a well-executed barrage of fists. Plus, it's wonderful cardio.

Omnia facit Voluntas - Will alone succeeds

    • 1
Mar 22, 2020

I don't practice but have heard from a friend active in Judo and has been practicing for years that it is a good sport to learn.

    • 1
Mar 22, 2020

the early UFC's proved that if you're going to learn only 1 discipline you're best off learning Brazilian jiu-jitsu

    • 2
Mar 22, 2020

Clearly the answer is drunken master Kung fu

    • 1
Mar 23, 2020

Okay, what's the training with that style like? TsingtaoXfailure?

Omnia facit Voluntas - Will alone succeeds

    • 1
Most Helpful
Mar 22, 2020

I've done a variety of Martial Arts since growing up - most recently Muay Thai for ~4 years now and a bit of boxing (1-2 years) - so I can relate to your all striking background.

I recommend BJJ - just started it, and it's a ton of fun because it's very intellectual (and effective). I would caution that the cardio and conditioning is something that requires consideration (I've run a 10K, and in my opinion, the cardio required for BJJ with 1.5 hours grappling is far more than that of running).

With this said, I've also had a ton of injuries (all minor), including bruises, inflamed rotator cuff, etc. It really depends on the school you attend and the intensity that's associated with training. Recovery is also essential for grappling arts.

I also second the poster above suggesting Judo - in my opinion, Judo is one of the most practical martial arts out there. BJJ has its limitations in that it's great in a 1:1 situation, but good luck using it in a situation where you potentially have multiple attackers. I like Judo because of the throw element - it's not you vs. an opponent, it's an opponent vs. the ground. In a real-life situation, I'd be hard pressed to see someone getting up/recovering after being thrown onto pavement (especially if you exercise solid force in your throw).

With this said, injury wise, I'd say Judo is up there with BJJ, if not greater (you are consistently being thrown by partners, and your body will take a beating getting adjusted). While knowing how to fall is important, the fact of the matter is that there are a lot of opportunities to be injured based off of takedowns, throws, etc.

It really depends on your risk appetite and approach to learning. For me personally, my career will always come first, so I take days off to recover, practice foam rolling/other techniques, and ultimately listen to my body. This being said, I lift 3 a week, attend martial arts 3-4 days a week, and mix in a run of a couple miles a few days a week, so my recovery may be different than yours.

    • 5
Mar 23, 2020

Trained Judo as a kid and absolutely loved it. Plan on going back at some point in my life because of everything you described. There's just something about being toss people 3 - 4x your size with proper technique and motion.

    • 1
Mar 23, 2020

Was about to write something similar. Did MMA for a while and always found groundwork the best part of it. BJJ is incredible. Teaches you to defend yourself, improves strength and (even if you wouldn't think it) helps hugely with cardio.

    • 1
Mar 23, 2020

star wars kid

Mar 23, 2020

any Krav Maga fans? I've heard conflicting things about it, but there are (were I guess) a decent amount of gyms that practice it where I live, I was wondering if anyone liked it enough to recommend it. Seems like it's pretty applicable to a lot of real life situations from what I hear

    • 1
Mar 23, 2020

Krav Maga, or as I like to call it "Tactical Nutkicking", is very good in training you for a number of scenarios where you enact brutal and unjustified violence of an unsupecting sparring partner (seems fitting...). If you have fighting spirit, it can help a bit; if you have not, you'll die with a knife in your gut 3 secs after starting your first fight bcs you thought you are le awesome 1337 0per4t0r after training nutkicks for a few weeks.

Omnia facit Voluntas - Will alone succeeds

    • 1
Mar 23, 2020

I don't know you, that's my purse!

Mar 23, 2020

Some users have mentioned Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Now I agree it's a very practical martial art and probably the best one there is for 1v1, but here are the strong cons of studying it:

  • Brazilian Jiu Jitsu involves going to the floor. In a street fight, you never want to go to the floor. You want to neutralize your opponent as quickly as possible and then get away from that situation as far as possible.
  • Depending on your luck/immune system/skin sensitivity, you may get ringworms and other sorts of skin infections from rolling on the ground (a term in BJJ used for practicing) with other people on the mats. If your gym isn't clean, if you don't thoroughly wash your clothes, your immune system is weak, you might get these skin infections and might have to spend money and time going to a doctor to get treated. Even with great hygiene, some practitioners still get skin infections from practicing BJJ. My dermatologist strongly advised that I didn't practice due to my eczema, which would exacerbate the chance of me getting an infection.
    Additionally, I would recommend investing in a headguard to avoid developing califlower ear, which is the puffy deformed ear that most UFC practitioners have.

I would strongly recommend either boxing or muay thai. Muay thai might be considered more practical because you'll learn clinches/elbows/knees/kicks/punching, whereas in boxing you'll only focus on punches/jabs etc. But becoming good at either one should help you immensely in a street fight.

If you're based in NYC, there are a ton of "fake boxing gyms", which cater to the crowd of people that want to feel good about themselves by throwing punches at a bag and calling it a day. Gleasons is a great gym, Mendez Boxing Club is awesome, and there are several other hidden gyms in the city. I strongly recommend avoiding gyms like Title,Kickboxers Club, Church Street Gym,Rumble. The instructors will not pay attention to your form in those places unless you have a private membership.

    • 1
Mar 24, 2020

I'm from Greece and indeed we too have a tonne of "fake boxing gyms" and "fake MMA dojos." Some guys practice MMA for a bit, get motivated by some UFC champs and pretend they're McGregor at the gyms. Shit happens.

Mar 25, 2020

Typical malaka behavior

Mar 23, 2020

Either go striking, grappling, or one of each.

Striking: Boxing, MT, Kickboxing
Grappling: Judo, BJJ, Wrestling, Sambo (if you can find it)

Everyone has to start somewhere so don't stress about never having done a martial art

    • 1
  • Intern in IB - DCM
Mar 23, 2020

I do both mma in bjj in competition level, it's quite intense and fun.

Mar 23, 2020

Muay Thai

Mar 23, 2020

Muay Thai + Jiu-Jitsu

Muay Thai striking will win a street fight, but BJJ is unlikely to come up unless you do a rear naked choke standing.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

Mar 24, 2020
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