Top 10 Martial Arts Based On Totality

What defines a style of fighting as good? The effectiveness of fighting is primarily based on the person, but when considering the art itself, many factors must be put into play. Limitations, emphasis on certain body parts, philosphy, effectiveness, and usefulness are just some factors that must be considered to view the pros and cons of a style of fighting in whole.

There actually is no way of fighting that is better than the other, for it is the individual themselves that are actually fighting. A way of fighting cannot win over another (only individuals can do this), but to give you an idea of what I feel, this is my list of the top 10 martial arts, and my reasons why I chosed them and in their specified order:

10 - Aikido

Based on their own techniques while comparing to other martial arts, Aikido made it on the list ar number 10. Aikido places emphasis on its flow, and also incorporates good footwork unlike many martial arts. Aikido's philosophy is based on two halves of one whole, which is important to know when fighting. Some downsides to Aikido is its lack of variety and its somewhat predictable moves.

9 - Taekwondo

At number 9, we find Taekwondo in its spot. When I mean Taekwondo, I don't mean American or even Olympic Taekwondo. Taekwondo in its prime is Korean Taekwondo, most notably Ku Ki Won Taekwondo. Taekwondo emphasises in kicking and also on flexibility. Another notable move in the Taekwondo arsenal is the headbutt, which is quite useful in some situations, but not many martial arts take advantage of it when the situation presents itself. Downsides include lack of variety in moves (other than kicks, it doesn't focus on very much else), lack of contact, and virtually no rhythm.

7 - Judo

Judo definitely makes the list, and on makes number 7 on this one. Judo is more of a generalization, as Jiu-Jutsu and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu could also fall into this category. Judo focuses on a lot of balance and foot sweeps, which calls for a lot of balance to counter or even block. Matwork and groundwork are also emphasised in Judo and locks and chokes are very significant to this style of fighting, which is also very useful when fighting a bigger opponent. Osoto is also very important in Judo, as it is one of the original 40 throws in Judo, and is one of the most important to learn. The same downsides that apply to wrestling also apply here though; there is no eye-poking, hair-pulling, groin-grabbing, etc. Also, some practical throws should be incorporated too, as many of the throws require too much skill and very little chance to use it effectively.

8 - Wrestling

Wrestling is number 8 on the list of top 10 martial arts. Why is wrestling here? When I say wrestling, I don't mean people such as John Cena or the Undertaker if you are familiar with those people; they're strong and muscular, don't get me wrong, but they're also paid to make their fights look real. Wrestling in this sense is full contact, street-fighting but with some limitations, as seen at the Olympic Games. Many rules associated with most martial arts are not present here, and almost anything goes. Leg tackling, unpredictable rushes, emphasis on protection (seen in shells), strangulation, locks and holding, and ground fighting. Some cons though are that there is still no hair-pulling, eye-poking, shin-pinching, or groin-grabbing, as these are essential when fighting off someone who plays by no rules and simply wants to hurt you.

6 - Northern Style Gung Fu

At number 6, Northern Style Gung Fu fills the spot. As well as Judo, Northern Gung Fu is also a generalization of style, but is primarly associated with Northern Shaolin Gung Fu and other, more rare arts. Northern styles of Gung Fu emphasise the palm strike, which is very deadly when knowing how to use it. Also, unlike other martial arts, Northern styles of Gung Fu allow change and some freedom in the use of the martial art. Fighting styles such as Taekwondo and Judo have many limitations, while arts such as Shaolin Gung Fu allow you to express yourself more freely in the way you fight. Some occurring problems with Northern Style Gung Fu is lack of power, and its use of great space to perform its moves. Martial arts such as Shaolin Gung Fu do not work on close quarter combat too much, as distance is key to their fighting style.

5 - Wing Chun

Wing Chun makes the list at number 5. Wing Chun is also a form of Gung Fu, but is classed in its own category, as it is one step above the other Gung Fu styles. Some of the best fighters of all time used Wing Chun, such as the legendary Yip Man and his even more famous pupil, Lee Jun Fan, better known as Bruce Lee. Wing Chun teaches the economy of the straigth line. It also emphasises nucleus fighting, and like Aikido, uses the philosophy of two halves equals one whole. Uncommited techniques are also crucial to Wing Chun. If an attack misses its target, the user is trained to easily flow with it, instead of leaving an opening (or, at least a big one that cannot be closed up again in time). Some problems with Wing Chun is its lack of variety in all moves, and the fact that the moves used by Wing Chun practitioners and martial artists are too complicated. Moves should be simple enough to perform while working effectively.

4 - Western Boxing

Western Boxing is number 4 on the list. Unlike boxing such as "Chinese Boxing", which is actually slang for Chinese Gung Fu, or Thai kick-boxing, Western Boxing is different in many ways, with many formidable and well-respected fighters. Western Boxing bred many fighters, such as the undefeated Rocky Marciano, and the well-known Muhammad Ali. Western Boxing focuses primarily on punching, in its variety, technique, speed, strength, and other things as well. Protection of the upper and mid portions of the body is also used in Western Boxing, as well as efficient head and body movements, dodging, footwork, and stance. Conditioning of the body is also key in Western Boxing, for you should be in shape when fighting your opponent, unlike other styles such as most Gung Fu styles, which allow anyone in any physical condition who know the moves to be considered a good fighter. The difference here is that in boxing, physical fitness is important in a good fighter, while styles such as Gung Fu do not require this. The downside of boxing though is there is no kicking, and you must defeat your opponent in a certain manner.

3 - Muay Thai/ Kick-Boxing

Thai-Boxing, unlike Western Boxing, is more closer to actual combat (when considering the sport itself). This is because it is less limited to how you take down your opponent, and allows you to use virtually every part of your body. Unlike Western Boxing, all your limbs can be used to fight your opponent, and unlike Savate, elbow, shins, and knees are also allowed. The downside to this form of Kick--Boxing, or any type of Kick-Boxing is poor punching technique, since more attention is focused on kicking. Also, the lead foot lacks attacking, and no grappling tactics are used either in this art.

2 - Eskrima

At number 2, the Filipino martial art, Eskrima, definitely deserves to be at this high on the list. Dan Inosanto is a well-known martial artist and student of the legendary Bruce Lee who practices and teaches this art form. Eskrima, also known as Kali, emphasises on weapon-based fighting, including many bladed weapons as well as improvised ones that can be found in everyday life in almost any environment. Eskrima also focuses on hand-to-hand combat, using mostly the arms. Eskrima is very close to street-fighting, even more so than wrestling or boxing. The use of weapons is important in a fight that may happen in the streets, for the key is to defend yourself in any way possible using whatever may be necessary. The problem with this is you can't carry a weapon everywhere you go, and not everything can be used as a weapon. The conflict here is that a weapon is only an extension of one's self, and fighting without a weapon is just as important, and sometimes even more, than fighting with one. Also, footwork and defense is not focused here, primarily offense, making offense the basically the only deffense, which is can cause a problem later in a fight resulting in a loss. Cross-training is useful when learning Eskrima, for its teachings is quite limited.

1 - Jeet Kune Do

At number one, Jeet Kune Do definitely deserves to take this spot on the list. By far the best and most legendary martial artists of all time is Bruce Lee, and his system of fighting he created is by far the most effective. Jeet Kune Do is considered a hybrid martial arts, taking parts of different fighting styles such as Western Boxing, Wing Chun, and Fencing and incorporating them all to his own personal style of fighting. Jeet Kune Do is designed as a way of fighting different for every person, where the individual takes their own knowledge to use in their own way of fighting that best suits them. Jeet Kune Do has no rules or limitations and possibilities are endless. In Jeet Kune Do, you basically take whatever is useless (in your opinion) and discard it, unlike other martial arts that have set limitations and limited freedom. Also, unlike many martial arts, JKD incorporates the philosphy of endless learning, for many martial arts give you certain belts or ranks that define how good you are, but in JKD, there is no rank, for there is no level of mastery, for nobody can stop learning. JKD allows one to take what is useful to a specific someone and allows them to use it. Also, conditioning is key too, for Bruce Lee (the creator of this art) felt that physical prowess was important; just because you know how to fight, if your an 80 year old man who cannot even climb a flight of stairs, you will still have the disadvantage in a fight. The donwside to JKD is that it is hard to actually call any style of fighting JKD since it is a style with no style, and does not follow any specific rules. One must study and experiment with other fighting styles and find what is useful, but not fully follow any one specific style of fighting other than their own. This is a common problem, for many do not understand this concept, and are confused by its overall philosphical approach.


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