When it comes to defending yourself in a street fight or from an attacker, boxing – now considered a martial art, is a great place to start. Boxing teaches the the proper way to punch, which most people don’t know how to do. Although the hands may be weaker than your legs, they can move much faster. As seen in the video below (skip ahead to 0:40) one man trained in boxing can handle multiple attackers with proper technique and powerful blows.
10. Kung Fu (Wushu)
Kung fu, a Chinese martial art that literally means an accomplishment gained through hard, long work, is one of the oldest martial arts in the world. Traditionally taught by Shaolin monks, philosophy and morality are important to the practitioners of this martial art, with virtues such as humility, respect, trust, and patience being emphasized. As is the case with most martial arts, kung fu’s worth lies in its health benefits and self-defense knowledge.
Judo, which means “gentle way”, is a modern japanese martial art and combat sport, that originated in Japan in the late nineteenth century. Judo focuses on teaching its students how to throw opponents or attackers to the ground, immobilize or subdue one’s opponent with grappling manoeuvrs, or submissions withjoint locks and chockes. Strikes and thrusts by hands and feet as well as weapons defence are a part of judo.
Taekwondo or “the way of the fist and foot”, is the national sport of Korea and the worlds most popular martial art in terms of number of practitioners.Taekwondo training generally includes a system of blocks, kicks, punches and open-handed strikes and may also include various take-downs or sweeps, throws and joint locks.Taekwondo practitioners are skilled in strength, stamina, speed, balance, and flexibility.
The historic followers of this mysterious Japanese martial art were guerrilla warriors and assassins. Likely considered criminals today, these ninjas used the art of stealth to surprise and defeat their opponents. Born in Japan’s feudal age, ninjutsu was developed to kill. Hands and feet are used in this martial art, but followers also take weapons training, using devices such as throwing stars, staffs, spears, swords, and explosives. More valuable during its heyday, ninjutsu is not specifically taught today, yet many martial arts use some of its elements.
Karate or karate-do was developed in the Ryukyu Islands from indigenous fighting methods and Chinese kenpo. Karate is primarily a striking art using punching, kicking, knee and elbow strikes and open-handed techniques such as knife-hands and ridge-hands. In most styles grappling, locks, retraints, throws and vital point strikes are taught.
Created in Japan in the early 1900s, aikido’s followers learn how to use an assailant’s strength and energy against them. Aikido is performed by blending with the motion of the attacker and redirecting the force of the attack rather than opposing it head-on. Aikido requires vert little physical energy. The techniques are completed with various throws or joint locks.
4. Combat Jujutsu
Combat Jujitsu is used by US Military Special Operations Forces (Green Berrets, Delta Force and Seals) and Special Forces of other countries! Unlike Regular Army hand-to-hand combat training, which focus on complex techniques for self-defense, combat Jujutsu is at the opposite end of the spectrum. Its techniques are meant for closing with an opponent and to cause severe bodily damage.
3. Krav Maga
When it comes to self defense Krav Maga is the SHIT! There are very few martial arts better suited to defend yourself from an attacker who may be threatening you with a knife or gun. Great for women looking to protect themselves from rape or other attacks, it emphasizes devastating attacks to the opponent’s vital areas, such as the groin and eyes, and encourages headbutts and the use of any available objects as weapons. This martial art features a three-step approach: Deal with the immediate threat, prevent the attacker from mounting a second offensive and then neutralize him.
Krav Maga is a military hand-to-hand system developed in Isreal and used by various Israeli Security Forces, which assumes no quarter will be given, and emphasizes maximum threat nuetralization in a “real life” context.
2. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (Gracie Jiu-Jitsu)
Despite its country of origin, the founding father of Brazilian jiu-jitsu was Japanese. Mitsuyo Maeda, a Japanese fighter, winner of more than 2,000 bouts and considered the toughest man to have ever lived, arrived in Brazil in 1914, with the aim of spreading martial arts. There, he met the Gracie family, which is today regarded as the first family of the sport, with its descendants being popular in the UFC and its schools across the world. Like traditional jujutsu and judo, the Brazilian form emphasizes throws and groundwork, making it a popular tool for today’s mixed-martial-artists. With more than 60% of any steet fight ending up on the ground, Gracie jiu-jitsu allows size and strength of the attacker to be taken out of the equation. Anyone can win or defend themselves with this technique.
1. Muay Thai
Muay Thai is referred to as “The Art of the Eight Limbs“, as the hands, shins, elbows, and knees are all used extensively in this art. A practitioner of Muay Thai thus has the ability to execute strikes using eight “points of contact,” as opposed to “two points” (fists) in Western boxing and “four points” (fists, feet) used in the primarily sport-oriented forms of martial arts.
Muay Thai fighters were originally trained to kick tree tunks in order to condition there shins, knees and feet. By repeatedly kicking the hard surface of tree trunks large calcium deposits would form on their legs and ultimatley deaden the nerve endings, allowing them to kick and knee opponents without feeling pain.