Every woman has to learn how to protect herself and the confidence and poise that comes with understanding your body and how to use it as a weapon is second to none. Honestly, there is no shortcut to defending yourself. You have to train and put in the required time to learn the various techniques. Also, all the martial arts listed below are used in real world scenarios all the time and are as legit as they come.
So wrap your hands and limber up as we’re about to give you the lowdown on which martial arts you, as a woman, should definitely learn.
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu or BJJ, as it’s more popularly known, is a martial art that was developed in Brazil in the 50’s. The art itself is a combination of joint locks and chokes that is built with the smaller person in mind. Also, the fact that you don’t have to take any real punishment in terms of kicks and punches means that you can go a hundred percent and not be encumbered by actual striking. There are a ton of competitions around the country that will help with getting better as well.
Judo is an Olympic sport originated in Japan. Similar to BJJ but with more focus on throws and trips, Judo aims to takedown the opponent with leverage and technique. There are a ton of schools in India that specialize in Judo and it’s a great martial art for women because it teaches the smaller person to topple the bigger, stronger opponent. Joint locks and chokes are also an important component in this martial art.
With high-flying kicks and powerful strikes, Taekwondo is an excellent martial art for women to pick up as well. As an Olympic sport, the art has been developed over the years to be known more as a point-fighting system but you can definitely rack up some serious damage with a decently placed kick or punch. Turn your legs into lethal weapons with this underrated martial art.
The national sport of Thailand, Muay Thai is a fierce and unrelenting martial art that teaches you combat using the 8-limb system. Meaning, you’ll use, your fists, knees, feet and elbows to deliver devastating blows and kicks to your attacker. As it’s getting more popular in the country, there are a lot of gyms that offer Muay Thai lessons.
This martial art is a little more obscure than the rest but it is as effective as it gets. Developed by the Russians, Sambo is a full-contact combat sport that uses punches and kicks to enter into throws and joint locks. Traditionally practiced in a Gi (The white uniform most martial artists wear), it utilizes throws in a very practical real-world way. There might not be too many schools around that teach this art but if you find one, do check it out.
One of the most popular martial arts on this list, Krav Maga is a system that was developed by the Israeli army so you know that it is for real. It involves strikes to the throat, groin etc and disarming techniques for weapons like knives and such. Not as effective as the other arts on this list as there is no real competition for it, it still is better than nothing. There are a lot of Krav Maga schools around and you should find one that suits your needs.
Mixed Martial Arts
The martial art for the new century, MMA is a combination of different types of combat techniques from wrestling, Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai and many more. It is essentially a mixture of everything that works. As one of the fastest growing sports in the world, you’ll find an MMA gym in every city in the country. So head on over for a quick class and you’ll definitely fall in love with it.
One of the most effective martial arts out there, boxing is as old and established as any other martial art on this list. Popularly known as the sweet science, boxing teaches you to move correctly and plan your attacks. From straight punches and hooks to avoiding damage, boxing as a skill is invaluable. And, India is actually a powerhouse in the sport of fisticuffs with Mary Kom and Vijender Singh leading the charge.
Another local sport that has its roots in rural India, wrestling is a martial art that requires you to literally bend other human beings to your will. It is a tough sport, no doubt, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be tossing around men twice your size. It is an incredibly effective martial art as well. From local tournaments to the Olympics, you’ll find tons of competitions to test your skills.
Another slightly obscure art that is incredibly effective, Luta Livre is a Brazilian art that is similar to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, but without the Gi. A mix of catch wrestling and judo, you can strike with your hands, feet, knees and elbows as well. There are a number of throws that are implemented as well. If you can’t find a school nearby, you can always opt for Brazilian Jiu Jitsu academy as they are very similar arts.