Which martial art shall I choose?

mcgowana

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Hi,

I am 32 and want to take up a martial art for fitness, self defence etc. but don't know which one to choose. I would like one thats good for fitness and well being, one that I would be able to defend myself if attacked by a chav and one which I can monitor my progress with belt and maybe some local competitions.

I have looked around my area and, wanting to train 2-3 times a week the 3 martial arts for me to choose from are King Fu, Kickboxing and Tae Kwon Do.

Which one shall I choose and what are your reasons?

Thanks,
Andy
 

Omar B

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Best thing you can do is go in and talk to the instructor, try a trial lesson and such. Any martial art taught properly will fulfill your fitness and self defense needs, but it comes down to the coach, gym facilities and class atmosphere.
 

Nolerama

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Best thing you can do is go in and talk to the instructor, try a trial lesson and such. Any martial art taught properly will fulfill your fitness and self defense needs, but it comes down to the coach, gym facilities and class atmosphere.

I fully agree.
 
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mcgowana

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Looks like I will be giving all 3 a chance and decide on which one to go for after a few weeks of each.

Thanks,
Andy
 

Gaius Julius Caesar

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Hi,

I am 32 and want to take up a martial art for fitness, self defence etc. but don't know which one to choose. I would like one thats good for fitness and well being, one that I would be able to defend myself if attacked by a chav and one which I can monitor my progress with belt and maybe some local competitions.

I have looked around my area and, wanting to train 2-3 times a week the 3 martial arts for me to choose from are King Fu, Kickboxing and Tae Kwon Do.

Which one shall I choose and what are your reasons?

Thanks,
Andy

All 3 (Having done some Choy Lay Fut Kung fu, Kickboxinf and TKD in my life) will give you a great workout, but as far as self defense they might or might not depending on the instruction.
 

Akira

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If you want to learn for self defense, I would recommend something that teaches you ground fighting and countering choke holds. In my experience none of those 3 you mentioned do that (except kung fu a little, depending on which style you're learning).
 

Chris Parker

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Hi,

Sorry, Akira, but if the focus is on self defence, I'm going to say DON'T look to ground fighting as a focus. It breeds some rather dangerous habits. However, being familiar with the ground as an environment is another thing.

For competition, ground fighting can be great. For self defence, ground escapes (getting out, up, and away) are far more vital.

As for choke defence, chokes aren't really common assaults. Unskilled strikes and kicks are far more likely to be encountered outside of a ring.

But to reiterate the above comments, the art/style is far less important that the instruction. Find a school you like, a teacher you can respect and learn from, a group you feel safe with, and go there. You will be far more likely to stay, and therefore benefit, than if you choose a school based on the art, and can't get anything from the instructor, or don't feel safe in the training.
 

Drac

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Asking someone about what discipline to choose is like asking what kind of car to buy..Everyone will have a different answer and a different reason for doing so..Check out the local schools and if you have not done so already observe a few classes and see if they call to your fighting spirit..Don't sign any lenghty contracts so if after a month or 2 you decide that this not for you you can leave free and clear...
 

Brother John

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If you want to learn for self defense, I would recommend something that teaches you ground fighting and countering choke holds. In my experience none of those 3 you mentioned do that (except kung fu a little, depending on which style you're learning).
I was going to disagree with you, but then I realized that maybe you're NOT saying "one that specializes in" these things, simply one that includes them. IN that case, I have to agree. I'd say that if a persons aim is to learn good self defense skills, they should try to study a system that doesn't have a narrow range of 'specialized' skills, but one that strives to be comprehensive. FIGHTING doesn't come to us compartmentalized. You'll never be attacked with the pre-acknowledged condition that you'll ONLY be punched at or grappled with to the exclusion of other tactics.

Also: I'd add this. IF self defense is one of your primary concerns I would say to EXCLUDE schools that tend to emphasize "Competition". I know that this position will be unpopular with some, but I believe that the skills and conditioning given for success in the ring WILL, by and large, lead to failure in life and death street altercations.

Your Brother
John
 

Tez3

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Whereabouts in the UK are you? Might be able to recommend some places to try.
 
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mcgowana

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Hi Tez3,

I live in Basingstoke, Hampshire which is 50 miles west of London, 30 miles north of Southampton, 10 miles south of Reading.

Thanks,

Andy
 

Tez3

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Hi Tez3,

I live in Basingstoke, Hampshire which is 50 miles west of London, 30 miles north of Southampton, 10 miles south of Reading.

Thanks,

Andy

yep know it.
I would suggest that whatever other art you chose you also do a weekly session of MMA for your fitness and well being. There's a very good MMA class in Reading run by a pro fighter called Gaz Roriston, nice guy, very knowledgable and a good coach, you'd enjoy it in conjunction with another style maybe even on it's own.
Contact Phil Else on 0797 1315584.
 

Sukerkin

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As Drac said above, asking someone which Martial Art you should do is rather a question fraught with bias :D. However, from practical experience, I can tell you that kung fu (dependant on school and style) is a prefectly utilitarian art for self defence.

Of course, I studied it more than two decades ago so my information is well out of date :eek:.
 

xfighter88

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Best thing you can do is go in and talk to the instructor, try a trial lesson and such. Any martial art taught properly will fulfill your fitness and self defense needs, but it comes down to the coach, gym facilities and class atmosphere.

I agree the coach is the most important. Don't know much a bout kung fu, but I have competed in both TKD and Muay Thai (Kickboxing w/ knees and elbows). From a self defense perspective I would say that Kickboxing is a bit more practical then TKD as there is more emphasis on hands which , in my opinion are the more efficient weapon. Be careful though sometimes people will advertise kickboxing because they are not certified in any actual martial art. As said above though, if the instructor is good then that is what matters.

For fittness I would definitly go with Kickboxing as it tends to be more about bag work and throwing combos. The other MA's will have other aspects like forms and 1 steps. These are useful and rewarding but not as much of a workout as 10 min on the heavy bag.

No disrespect to any other martial arts just my 2 cents.
 

David43515

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I`ve been studying Kung Fu, Karate, Silat, and Arnis/Kali for just over thirty years. One thing I`ve noticed is that even within the same style no two instructors teach things absolutly the same. Or maybe they don`t emphisize the same things. The best thing you can do is visit schools, watch classes, talk to teachers and students and THEN decide if that teacher or school is right for you.

I`ve been to Karate classes where they couldn`t teach you how to punch your way out of a wet paper bag, and I`ve been to schools in the same organization where I was almost afraid to go in w/o a baseball bat.
 

Bruno@MT

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Imo the best thing to do is to contact the various schools and ask if it is ok to come and watch a class or perhaps get a trial lesson. Most schools around here give 1 or 2 free try out lessons.

Base your opinion on your experiences and feelings about those lessons. No 2 teachers are alike, and it is possible that you do not get a positive vibe from a teacher or from the training method or the other members, regardless of how good (or not) he or she is.

In my younger years I practised jujutsu. The exact same system was also taught in nearby villages by other former students of the same sensei under which my sensei trained. Their training methods and goals varied a LOT. My sensei emphasized technique and tai sabaki. a sensei in the other club emphasized power, and being tough as nails.
 
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