Best Martial Arts for Getting Fit

Best Martial Arts for Getting Fit

Many gyms offer traditional ways of exercising, such as cardio and weightlifting. Then you have gyms that offer many other types of workouts, including yoga and dance.

And then there are gyms like American Top Team, which offers world-class instruction on many different styles of fighting. That’s not surprising, since the gym was founded by MMA stars. They teach the most effective MMA fighting styles, including Brazilian Jiujitsu, wrestling, boxing, Muay Thai, and kickboxing. Then they incorporate these various styles for MMA.

But is training for martial arts a good workout for most people? It’s true that most devoted fans of the various martial arts are generally fit and healthy. But these are the martial arts that are truly best for you if you just want to keep fit:


Not very many fighting experts recommend capoeira as the best martial arts for actual self-defense or for MMA. But it may very well be the best martial arts option for getting fit.

This is because it uses a wide range of different techniques, and it involves a lot of dynamic movements. It mixes speedy hand movements and forceful kicks with flowing footwork. Spars between capoeira students often resemble a highly intricate dance, and it doesn’t hurt that such spars are often set to music with emphasis on strong drum beats.

The rigorous training will certainly help with your cardiovascular health, strength training, weight loss, and agility. It can lead to terrific athleticism, and you’ll be able to do cartwheels and handsprings more easily.


This Korean martial art is quite popular among students of all ages. It is also famous for its kicking techniques, which is why it focuses on leg dexterity and strength. With taekwondo, you’ll be lighter on your feet while you deliver powerful kicks that might even be strong enough to break through wooden boards.

Taekwondo schools also tend to emphasize respect and formality during classes. The training can be strenuous, but it’s a great mix of both spiritual maintenance and physical fitness.


Interest in karate quickly grew once news of it came to the US right after WWII. This is another discipline that focuses in both mind and body. It teaches determination and discipline, while you learn self-defense with powerful punches and kicks.

The emphasis with karate is to deliver as much power as possible at the point of impact when you use your body to strike. You’ll learn to strike with your knuckles, the outer edge of your hands, the forearm, elbow, knee, heel, and balls of your feet.

The training is quite strenuous, and it’s all about toughening you up physically. But you’ll also learn about timing and tactics, while you also develop the spiritual aspect of the sport.


This is a fighting style from the Philippines, which as ruled by the US for about half a century before the country declared independence following WWII. Escrima is a fighting system that uses anything close at hand for a weapon, especially knives and sticks. Escrima students learn to use quick movements and lethal methods while practicing with wooden fighting sticks and practice knives.

It is extremely effective in developing overall fitness, while it also teaches you about the deadliness of real knives. Escrima is one of the few martial arts where bigger and stronger fighters don’t necessarily hold a significant advantage over their opponents. It’s about how well you move and use your weapons, which is why smaller students can win more frequently as long they know how to use the knives and fighting sticks.

Wing Chun

This martial art comes from China, and the focus is on delivering extremely quick and unexpected punches to overwhelm the opponent as quickly as possible. Have you ever seen an action movie with a training montage involving a wooden trunk with 3 protruding arms? That’s a standard wing chun dummy.

Wing Chun can get you in shape, without the need to achieve almost superhuman fitness levels. It’s quite fun, and it works very well as a martial art for newbies. You’ll develop quick hand speed and use direct attacks, while you also develop your own toughness and determination.

Tai Chi

If you want a really fit form, then capoeira and other martial arts may be best. But Tai Chi fans argue that if your fitness goal is to just remain healthy and to keep your body functional, then tai chi is your best bet.

You might have seen tai chi practiced in many parks these days. It involves deliberate, meditative movements, while you try to maintain a serene mindset. It’s extremely low-impact, which is why it’s also great for senior citizens.

Tai Chi 5 Minutes a Day Module 01 – easy for beginners

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