Best Martial Art for Self Defense: Overview of Different Styles

Best Martial Art for Self Defense: Overview of Different Styles

These days, more people would like to know what is the best martial art for self defense, or at least what are the best options for learning. If you are ever in a survival situation, it will be important to know how to defend yourself. In times of natural or man-made disasters, there may be a break in law and order and people may resort to looting.

Someone may try to steal your vehicle or supplies and it is very possible that there are no police or law enforcement officials to turn to for help. In these situations, your ability to defend yourself could mean the difference between returning home with food or equipment and returning home empty-handed. Self-defense skills become even more important in case a natural disaster continues.

This is because other people, especially those who do not have their own reserves or supplies, can become desperate. When people are hungry or sick, they are more likely to be willing to hurt others to get what they want.

In addition, as the weeks and months pass, it is possible that people no longer have access to the usual weaponry they may have depended on to defend themselves. Ammunition may have run out, with no way to replenish stocks. Over time, weapons can wear out or be damaged by exposure to the elements. This means that you need to have ways to defend yourself, even when the situation is not ideal.

Best Martial Art for Self Defense: Overview of Different Styles

Physical benefits of martial arts.

This is where the martial arts come in. The reality is that people have been developing ways to defend themselves, both from individual as well as from multiple attackers, even before the arrival of gunpowder and modern weaponry. Different types of martial arts were developed, with different philosophies and techniques.

But all of these offer key benefits that could be crucial in any life or death, or in a situation of self-defense, in which you may find yourself. While some types of martial arts may favor offense over defense, the ability to avoid injuries, as well as resistance attacks will generally be part of any martial art.

One of the benefits that almost all martial arts will provide is a stronger and faster physique. Physical fitness and a more capable body will be a great advantage in a self-defense situation. If you are able to move faster, that gives you a better chance to escape, in case the odds are against you. Or if you have more resistance, you are more likely to leave your pursuers panting for breath. Those are just some of the benefits of speed and endurance.

Best Martial Art for Self Defense: Overview of Different Styles

There is also the greatest resistance that comes with martial arts training. Ideally, you’ll be fast enough to avoid or lose sight of yourself. Or if an attacker manages to throw a blow or a kick, his body will be strong enough to be able to shake off the impact.

And then, the increased strength that comes from better-developed muscles should allow you to hit your attackers, with more effective results. Your quickest reflexes and your ability to throw punches or kicks will also allow you to launch your attacks more frequently. So these are some of the general advantages that come from martial arts training.

Mental benefits of martial arts.

Another advantage to consider involves changes in the mind. Being able to defend against attackers requires that you be open to the possibility that you have to inflict serious or even deadly damage to others. This is something that many people can not do or consider, even if their own lives are at risk.

Martial arts training allows a person to practice, through combat, the various movements and techniques that are designed to defend and cause damage. Over time, this continuous training and practice can help overcome any persistent hesitancy or resistance.

This is important because, if you are more capable of inflicting serious damage to defend yourself or your loved ones, your chances of survival increase. In addition, if he no longer hesitates to cause injuries in the vicinity of his attacker or attackers, this also makes him more capable of defending himself with a weapon of greater range, such as a firearm or a crossbow. This is something that should not be underestimated because, in a life or death situation, even a small hesitation may already be enough to give your adversary an insurmountable advantage.

So these are some of the key benefits that come with general martial arts training. Ideally, you will choose a martial art with which you feel comfortable personally. This is important because learning a martial art requires a serious commitment of time, practice and concentration. This becomes somewhat easier if you love the martial art you are learning, and if you are really interested in their specific techniques, or even in the philosophy that supports them. So keep this factor in mind when choosing a specific martial art, as it will help your learning become more effective.

Types of martial arts

That said, if you feel capable of learning one of several martial arts, you can choose those that offer the greatest benefits in terms of self-defense and survival. One thing to consider is to learn a martial art that teaches you how to use basic weapons. After all, even in a disaster situation, and even if advanced weaponry such as rifles and bows are not available, you will still be surrounded by objects that can make effective weapons. You can also increase your chances by having your own weapons in an easily accessible place or on your person.


One of the best martial arts for self defense is Arnis. This is a martial art that teaches the use of stick weapons from the beginning of the training process. The poles are usually made of wood and measure about 26 inches long. Arnis teaches people to fight with a stick in one hand or a stick in each hand (2 sticks).

This martial art focuses on the flow of various techniques so that the movements are smooth and the strikes are effective. People learn how to stop an attacker’s weapon with sticks, and also how to disable or disarm an attacker by hitting that person’s limbs.

Best Martial Art for Self Defense: Overview of Different Styles

Arnis is particularly useful in a survival situation due to the type of weapon that people receive instructions. Since these are simple light wood sticks, it is actually possible for an Arnis practitioner to have them on hand at all times. The sticks can be stored at home or in the workplace. It is also easy to carry sticks in a bag or other support. Even if the disaster occurred suddenly and without warning, this person would never be trapped in a situation without a weapon.

In fact, since the poles seem relatively innocuous, it would be possible to take them inside places or aboard ships that would never allow other weapons such as firearms or knives. An attacker may not realize you are armed, or may underestimate the effectiveness of your stick weapons, which will give you an advantage.

The sticks are also made of light and resistant wood. This means that they are relatively easy to transport, even for long durations, and they last a long time. Another advantage they have over blade weapons is that they do not need to be sharpened to maintain their effectiveness.

Another benefit of Arnis is that, if the usual poles are not around, it is fairly easy to replace them with other objects found with the approximate shape, size and hardness. This means that, even in the worst survival situations, you can always find something to use as a weapon or weapon, and you will have the skills and training to use them effectively. In the event that you simply need to disarm or incapacitate an attacker, instead of causing a fatal injury, these canes are also better able to do that.

Therefore, when it comes to martial arts for self-defense purposes, particularly in a world hit by a disaster, Arnis is one of the options to consider. This martial art also sometimes bears the name of eskrima or kali. Now, this does not mean that Arnis is the only martial art based on viable weapons that exists. There are others, so if an Arnis instructor is not available where you live, you can consider some of these. When it comes to fighting with sticks, there are also bojutsu that use a long stick or cane.


An additional benefit of Bojutsu is the greater range that is given to you with the weapon. Whether the baton is being used to hit, cut or stab, it is more likely to harm your attacker without incurring injuries, simply because of the distance your weapon can cover. It also helps that long sticks or staves are something that can be found in the wild or that can be obtained from everything, even in a post-disaster scenario. So there will be no reason to go without a weapon. However, there are some disadvantages in the use of such a long staff.

Best Martial Art for Self Defense: Overview of Different Styles

One drawback is the loss of control for self-defense purposes. The greater scope and duration of the personnel is good to start the first strike and go on the offensive. But once an attacker has been able to close the distance, the longer length can make it more difficult to stop the attacks or defend otherwise. This is different from the two arnis sticks, which offer greater control and maneuverability, which helps stop attacks. Another drawback for long staff is a loss of portability. It is harder to handle and harder to carry wherever you go.

Weapons disadvantages.

There are also many martial arts schools that teach students how to fight and defend themselves with swords. While this will still offer benefits in a self defense situation, there are some clear disadvantages. Even if you have a sword of your own, you are less likely to be allowed to enter certain places. There is also the challenge of keeping it sharp, in a situation of extended survival. That said, knives also offer some additional survival benefits, in terms of hunting and meat preparation. But for self-defense purposes, martial arts based on the sword may not be the best way to go.

Another thing to keep in mind is that there may still be situations in which you must defend yourself, even if you do not have the weapon of your choice. A disturbing possibility would involve being unarmed and having to defend against several armed attackers. To be truly prepared for any survival situation, you need to know how to fight unarmed and use your own body as an effective weapon. In regard to this objective, there is a series of unarmed martial arts that stand out in terms of their effectiveness in self-defense.


A good place to start is with a simple boxing workout. This martial art does a series of things that are very effective in terms of protecting yourself. Just look at the best fighters in action. One of the things that a person will learn is the correct defensive posture. This implies multiple layers of protection. The arms and cuffs are up, which will help protect both the torso and the face of the blows received.

You will also learn proper foot work so that it is possible to get away from an opponent’s attack line, or you could dodge an incoming stroke. Even when contact is made, you will learn how to adjust the angle of your body so that an incoming punch is more likely to disappear. This allows you to divert most of the weight of the punch.

Boxing also allows your body to become harder, through constant physical training. Your reflexes, the ability to anticipate and react, and more will also be improved through constant combat with other fighters. There is nothing unreal or academic about throwing things in a ring. In this way, boxing helps you develop the mentality of a fighter. Now, while boxing offers these advantages, there are some aspects that are lacking. For example, the attacks you make are limited to hits.

Best Martial Art for Self Defense: Overview of Different Styles

While the punches are a good start, boxers do not learn to use the other parts of their body, such as the elbows, knees and feet to slow down or keep an attacker at bay. At the same time, boxing does not have much to teach for situations in which an attacker has managed to knock you down or hold you to the ground. To learn about these aspects, it is necessary to resort to other martial arts.


Judo can also be considered the best martial art for self-defense when it comes to learning to deal with a situation in which an attacker has managed to grab you, and is pushing you or trying to push you to the ground. These are actually very common scenarios in real life fights. There is much more to throw, push, grab and hold, unlike elegant strikes and flying kicks. Learning judo will give you an idea of ​​how to get out of a situation where an opponent is trying to drown you, or has you nailed to the ground.

Another advantage of judo is that it allows a smaller defender to effectively protect himself against a bigger attacker or even knock him down. By changing its position and channeling the existing impulse, it is possible to launch an attacker, even if there is a relatively large difference in weight or height. It becomes more a matter of time and technique. It is also possible to subject a larger attacker by focusing on the most fragile or vulnerable parts of that person’s anatomy.

Best Martial Art for Self Defense: Overview of Different Styles

In a survival situation, people will tend to persecute people who feel they are weaker or smaller than they are. If you have acquired skill in judo, you will have less to fear, even if you are smaller or not as muscular as your attacker.

Kick boxing

While kickboxing is relatively lighter in defensive techniques compared to other martial arts, it offers a number of benefits for the survivor. The general idea is that, if you are forced into unarmed combat, the disadvantage of attacking with your fists is that your reach will be limited. This is a problem if your attacker is armed with a weapon that has a longer reach such as a stick, a chain, a piece of wood or a blade. There is something to gain by being able to attack with your legs and feet. At a minimum, the greater scope of these offers will help keep the attackers at bay.

Best Martial Art for Self Defense: Overview of Different Styles

While there are some martial arts that stand out in terms of maintaining an effective personal defense, remember that, when choosing the best martial art for self defense, there is no right answer. Instead, the most important thing is to find a martial art with which you can commit in the long term.

All forms of martial arts training will offer benefits in terms of improving your physical abilities, increasing your mental strength and alertness, and preparing you to face the possibility of being attacked. Make sure you start learning soon. The more knowledge you have at your disposal, the greater your chances in the event of a disaster.


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