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Jiu Jitsu vs Taekwondo: Which is Better for Self Defense

Jiu Jitsu vs Taekwondo

Lets get right to – jiu jitsu vs taekwondo, what’s the difference, which is better for self defense, what one should you try out, and is taekwondo effective.

Have you been searching on Google and watching different videos on Youtube about martial arts because you can’t decide which martial art to try? Allow me to help you out!  

I’ve trained Brazilian jiu jitsu for over 6 years, and while my tae kwon do is limited to only a couple classes in my teenage years, I feel I am still able to give some useful insight on the two martial arts.

Related: How long does it take to learn BJJ vs TKD

Tae Kwon Do vs Jiu Jitsu – Key Takeaways

  • Tae kwon do (TKD) is purely striking based but these strikes can be brutal if trained and performed correctly
  • Brazilian jiu jitsu (BJJ) is purely grappling based, taking strong influence from judo and wrestling with endless techniuqes used to takedown, control, and submit your opponent
  • In terms of self defense, the strong advantage goes to BJJ due to the ability to control attacker with grappling based techniques
  • To guarentee that a martial art is effective, it should always incorporate a form of live sparring to show that the techniqeus work on fully resisting individuals

Is Taekwondo effective?

Taekwondo can certainly be effective.

Kicks, when used with proper technique, can be advantageous in both self-defense and competitive situations. Taekwondo fighters often have excellent balance, flexibility and speed when it comes to striking. These attributes can help to catch an opponent off-guard and deliver powerful, precise strikes to vulnerable targets.

However, Tae Kwon Do does have limites and vulnerabities such as:

  • limited in certain situations, such as close-quarters encounters
  • practitioner may struggle if taken to the ground or in a situation where a striking distance cannot be maintained
  • certain kicks may leave you vulnerable to counter attacks, offbalances, sweeps and takedowns

It’s also important to consider the context when determining Taekwondo’s effectiveness. In the realm of competitive sport, Taekwondo has been proven effective, as evidenced by its inclusion in the Olympic Games.

However, for self-defense purposes, one may want to supplement Taekwondo training with another martial art that focuses on grappling like Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, to cover all possible combative scenarios.

Which is Better for Self Defense?

Jiu jitsu is better than taekwondo for self defense since it can be used to take down and control an attacker in a systematic and controlled manner.

Brazilian jiu jitsu provides endless grappling and ground based fighting options that taekwondo simply does not have an answer for.

While jiu jitsu doesn’t include any striking, bjj can effectively still deal with the striking found in taekwondo, but taekwondo cannot deal with the grappling techniques of bjj.

Related: Which Martial Art Should I Learn First?

Difference between Jiu Jitsu and Taekwondo?

What’s the different between jiu jitsu and taekwondo?

Jiu JitsuTaekwondo
grappling basedstriking based
submission based fightingpoint based fighting
control focusedattack focused
frequent live sparringsparring may be infrequent

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu can be described as a combination of a variety of different grappling based martial arts such as catch wrestling, Greco Roman wrestling, sumo, sambo and judo.

Brazilian jitsu is a purely grappling based martial art that focuses on taking your opponent down, controlling them through the use of leverages, and then submitting them through the use of joint locks and strangulation.

Taekwondo is a striking based martial art that places emphasis on punching and kicking techniques specifically jump kicks, fast kicking strikes, and head kicks.

BJJ is the revolutionary martial art that started in the 1920s with the Gracie family after learning Kodokan Judo from a Japanese Judoka, Mitsuyo Maeda.

The Gracie family started creating different effective techniques to be able to win over opponents even if they’re in a heavier weight class. 

Tae Kwon Do is the combination of Karate, Kung Fu and other traditional Korean self defense like Subak (bare hands technique), Taekkyon (graceful, fluid like and rhythmic feet and hand movements to unbalance opponents) and Gwonbeop(Korean Karate.) 

Tae Kwon Do is more of a striking and standing sport focused on landing hard punches (jab, straight, hook, etc.) and deadly kicks like (roundhouse, axe kick, side kick, etc.)

What is BJJ?

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is known as “the gentle art.” Its heart and game play is all about neutralizing your opponent by bringing them down to the ground, and taking control of the situation by using leverage and limiting their movement while you focus on winning the fight by submitting them with your choice of attack like breaks, chokes, and locks.

Defining Factors of BJJ:

  • available for all ages
  • frequent live sparring
  • control and technique based
  • Takes 10+ year to achieve black belt
  • submission based (a submission wins a bout/not points)
  • there is an answer to every position and an answer to every technique

Orgin and History of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has an interesting history that dates back to monks in Northern India around 4000 years ago.

  • It was developed in Japan as a form of martial arts for use on the battlefield in the 1800s.
  • Mitsuyo Maeda, a prominent student of Jigoro Kano, later introduced the martial art to Brazil, where it was further developed by the Gracie family in the 1920s.
  • Brazilian Jiu Jitsu arrived in the United States in the 1970s, and its effectiveness was showcased in the first UFC event in 1993, where Royce Gracie demonstrated its effectiveness even when used by a smaller practitioner.
  • Today, bjj is practiced by over 3,000,000 student and jiu jitsu is considered a staple for anyone looking to compete in MMA or to become a wellrounded martial artist

Whats the Difference Between Japanese Jiu Jitsu, Judo, and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu?

The main difference between Japanese Jiu-Jitsu (JJJ), Judo, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) lies in their focus, techniques, and philosophies.

  • Japanese Jiu-Jitsu encompasses aspects of self-defense and combat, integrating striking, grappling, and submissions. (It is considered the martial art from which Judo and BJJ evolved.)
  • Judo is purely grappling based and focuses heavily on takedowns, throws, and sweeps. It also includes some ground work and submissoins (training/competion is done purely in the gi)
  • Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is also focused only on grappling and takes heavy influce from japanese jiu jitsu and judo as well as wrestling. It focuses largely on ground fighintg and submissions but doesn inclue takedowns and throws (while limited compared to judo/wrestling)

Side note: Judo was created by Jigoro Kano, a Japanese Jiu-Jitsu practitioner who aimed to emphasize the technical and educational aspects of martial arts. He removed many dangerous techniques from the Jiu-Jitsu curriculum and focused primarily on throws and groundwork.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, on the other hand, is a descendant of Judo and focuses heavily on groundwork and submissions.

This martial art was introduced to Brazil by Mitsuyo Maeda, a Judo expert who shared his knowledge with the Gracie family. The Gracies, particularly Helio Gracie, adapted the Judo techniques to create BJJ, a martial art that emphasizes positional control and leverage, making it particularly suitable for smaller or weaker practitioners against larger opponents. Keep in mind, BJJ’s primary goal is to submit the opponent using chokes, joint locks, or controlling positions.

Are There Strikes or Weapons in BJJ?

While striking techniques are not the main focus, practitioners or bjj gyms may sometimes incorporate strikes to better represent bjj techniques in terms of real life self defense. However, in most bjj gyms you wil not be trained in any striking.

Next, you won’t be training with any weapons in BJJ. Unless, your gym is a self defense gym or teaching a “self defense system” (which I would ultimately recommend avoiding), you will not be doing any weapons training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Philosphy of Jiu Jitsu

The philosophy of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is centered around the idea that a smaller, weaker person can defend themselves against a larger, stronger attacker through the use of technique, leverage, and timing.

It emphasizes the importance of humility, respect, and discipline, and encourages practitioners to focus on continuous learning and self-improvement.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu also emphasizes the importance of controlling one’s ego and developing a strong sense of sportsmanship, both on and off the mat.

Common Techniques of BJJ

Brazilian jiu jitsu while it has strong roots in Judo, is continuously evolving and with that taking the most effective techniques from a variety of martial arts such as wrestling, sambo, and judo.

An example of some common techniques of BJJ are:

  • Takedowns (with some of the most common being takedowns found in wrestling or judo like double leg takedowns, single leg takedown, hip toss, uchi mata, and foot sweeps)
  • Once on the ground a lot of techniques revolve around using your “guard” (your legs) as frames to keep you opponent away and to control or even submit your opponent
  • BJJ also utilizes forms of pinning similar to those found in wrestling and judo to control your opponent
  • Finally, what separates bjj from wrestling is the use of submission such as joint locks and strangles

BJJ Belt Ranking System Explained

The adult BJJ belt system consists of different belt ranks, going from:

white > blue > purple > brown > black

with each belt symbolizing a different level of proficiency.

The belts in jiu jitsu are earned through training, competition and demonstration of technical proficiency and understanding of the art.

The jiu jitsu belt ranks are not only used for adults, but also for kids jiu jitsu, with slight modifications in the curriculum and requirements.

The jiu jitsu belt system serves as a guide for students to track their progress and set goals for their training.

What Gear and Apparel Do You Need for BJJ Training?

The first and most important item you need is a BJJ gi, which is a uniform consisting of a heavy cotton jacket, pants, and a belt that reflects your current rank. The gi is designed to withstand constant pulling and grabbing that takes place during BJJ sparring sessions, also known as “rolling.”

Next, you should invest in a good quality rashguard, which is a tight-fitting shirt made of moisture-wicking material to keep you dry and comfortable during training.

Rashguards can be worn under your gi or as standalone wear when practicing no-gi BJJ. It is also advisable to have a pair of spats or compression pants to wear under your gi pants for additional protection, support, and hygiene purposes.

Finally, protection equipment like a mouth guard or groin protector are often worn by practitioners.

Gear and Apparel for BJJ Summed Up:

  • gi
  • rash guard
  • spats
  • shorts
  • mouth guard

What is Jiu Jitsu Training Like?

Jiu Jitsu training is a unique and transformative experience that combines both physical and mental challenges.

The typical Jiu Jitsu class is divided into three main components: warm-up, technique instruction, and sparring.

1. The warm-up is designed to get your body ready for the intensive workout ahead and usually includes exercises such as jogging, stretches, and bodyweight exercises.

2. During the technique instruction, the instructor will demonstrate specific Jiu Jitsu moves, focusing on proper execution and various details.

  • Students will then practice these techniques in pairs or groups, allowing them to drill the moves repetitively and gain a better understanding of how they work in a controlled environment. One advantage of this approach is that it enables the practitioner to learn the intricacies of complex techniques while also building muscle memory.

3. Sparring, also known as “rolling”, is arguably the most crucial aspect of Jiu Jitsu training.

  • It is during this part of the class that students put what they’ve learned into practice against fully resisting partners. Rolling helps develop your ability to react and adapt in real-time, refining your skills under pressure, and providing invaluable insights into your strengths and weaknesses.

BJJ Competitions

Since Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a very popular martial art in which individuals can practice and perform with 100% effort with a low risk of injury, bjj competitions are very popular.

A bjj competition is the perfect even to test your skills and track your progress. Competitions are broken down into:

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Sex
  • Rank
  • Experience Level

BJJ Point System

Wondering how to win bjj match? Well you can with either by scoring more points than your opponent or by achieving a submission.

Takedown2 points
Sweep from bottom2 points
Knee-on-belly2 points
Passing the guard (legs)3 points
Mount4 points
Rear mount – taking their back and achieving both of your hooks in (legs)4 points

While the most popular bjj competitions such as those held by the IBJJF (International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Federation), follow the above point structure, there are a variety of orgazniations that hold bjj competitions that can follow vastly different rule and point structures such as:

  • EBI overtime
  • ADCC rulesest
  • Submission Only
  • No Time Limite

It should be notes that in a point based bjj compeition of a submission is successfully performed by either competitor it is considered an immediate victory and points are no longer valued*

Sport Jiu Jitsu

It should be noted that there are strong differences between sport jiu jitsu and self defense jiu jitsu.

Sport jiu jitsu:

  • focuses on techniques that are effective in a tournament setting
  • utilizes some techniques and positions that would not be effective for self defense
  • can utilize a variety of grips such as that when sparring in a gi that may or may not be there in a self defense situation

Self defense jiu jitsu:

  • focuses only on the safest and most effective bjj techniques for a real life self defense scenario
  • is more geared to MMA where strikes are involved
  • puts more emphasis in being on the top position

How Long Does It Take to Learn Brazilian Jiu Jitsu?

Typically, acquiring fundamental skills and feeling comfortable on the mat takes ~6 months – 1 year.

Regular training involving drills, rolling, and attending classes 2-4 times per week is essential to make progress in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

In terms of becoming confident in your skills and your ability to takedow, control, and submit any untrained individuals, you can expect to be considered “good” at jiu jitsu at ~3-5 years into training.

It was around the 5 year mark where I, personally, felt confident enough in what I had learned to properly defend myself against anyone untrained regardless of their size.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu?

On average, it takes about 8 to 12 years for a dedicated practitioner to attain a black belt in BJJ, assuming a consistent training regimen of at least 3-4 times per week.

The Brazilian Jiu Jitsu belt system consists of different colored belts, each representing a level of expertise: white, blue, purple, brown, and black. Each belt signifies the practitioner’s competence, experience, and dedication to the art.

The time spent at each belt level varies, but it is not uncommon for individuals to spend anywhere between 1-3 years on each rank.

Side note: certain factors can influence the speed of progress, such as consistency in training, effort, natural aptitude, and quality of instruction.

Pros and Cons of BJJ

Develops physical fitness, strength, and flexibilityCan be physically demanding and may lead to injuries
Teaches self-defense techniques that can be used in real-life situationsMay not be effective in all self-defense scenarios, such as against multiple attackers or armed assailants
Emphasizes technique over brute strength, making it accessible to people of all sizes and abilitiesCan be a challenging and slow learning curve, especially for beginners
Fosters a strong sense of community and camaraderie among practitionersCan be expensive, especially if you opt for private lessons or training with a well-known instructor
Provides an outlet for stress and anxietyCan be intimidating to train with more experienced or skilled practitioners
Encourages continuous learning and self-improvementCan be time-consuming and require a significant commitment to progress and achieve rank

Taekwondo Explained

Orgin and History of Taekwondo

Taekwondo is a martial art that originated in Korea, with its roots tracing back to the early days of Korean history.

The exact origins of taekwondo are somewhat difficult to trace, but it is widely believed to have developed from traditional Korean martial arts that were practiced in Korea as early as the 1st century BCE.

In the early 20th century, a number of different martial arts styles were developed in Korea, including taekkyeon, which was known for its fluid and acrobatic kicks.

In the 1940s and 1950s, a group of Korean martial arts practitioners began to develop a new martial art that would be based on taekkyeon, but would also incorporate elements of Japanese martial arts, particularly karate.

In 1955, the name “taekwondo” was officially adopted for this new martial art.

The word “taekwondo” is derived from the Korean words “tae” (meaning “foot”), “kwon” (meaning “fist”), and “do” (meaning “way” or “path”), which together can be translated as “the way of the foot and fist”.

The first official taekwondo school was opened in Korea in 1955, and over the next few decades, taekwondo began to spread around the world, particularly after it was included as a demonstration sport in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, Korea.

One of the defining characteristics of taekwondo is its emphasis on high, fast kicks and spinning and jumping techniques.

It is also known for its competitive sparring, which is a popular event at martial arts tournaments.

Philosphy of Taekwondo

Overall, the philosophy of Taekwondo is centered on developing not just physical strength and skill, but also mental discipline, moral character, and a sense of community and connection with others.

In addition to its physical training, taekwondo also emphasizes values such as respect, self-control, and perseverance, and many taekwondo schools incorporate spiritual and philosophical elements into their training.

Some other important values of taekwondo are:

  1. Courtesy: Taekwondo emphasizes the importance of showing respect and consideration for others, both inside and outside of the training environment.
  2. Integrity: Practitioners of Taekwondo are expected to adhere to a strict code of ethical conduct, including honesty, fairness, and a strong sense of personal responsibility.
  3. Perseverance: Taekwondo requires discipline and dedication, and practitioners are encouraged to maintain a strong work ethic and a never-give-up attitude.
  4. Self-control: One of the primary goals of Taekwondo training is to develop self-discipline and self-control, both in physical movements and in personal behavior.
  5. Indomitable spirit: Taekwondo places a strong emphasis on mental toughness and resilience, and practitioners are encouraged to cultivate a fearless and determined mindset.

Common Techniques

  1. Kicks: Taekwondo is known for its powerful, high-flying kicks. Some of the most common kicks include front kick, roundhouse kick, side kick, hook kick, and spinning kick.
  2. Strikes: Taekwondo also includes a variety of hand strikes, such as punches, knife-hand strikes, and hammer-fist strikes.
  3. Blocks: Taekwondo practitioners use a variety of blocks to deflect incoming attacks, such as high blocks, low blocks, and inward and outward blocks.
  4. Throws and takedowns: In addition to strikes and kicks, Taekwondo also includes somewhat limited throws and takedowns that are designed to quickly and effectively neutralize an opponent.
  5. Forms (poomsae): Forms are a series of predetermined movements that simulate a self-defense scenario. Practitioners perform forms to develop muscle memory and to practice transitions between techniques.
  6. Sparring: Sparring is a simulated combat situation that allows practitioners to practice their techniques in a controlled environment. In Taekwondo, sparring is typically done with protective gear, and points are awarded for successful strikes and kicks.
  7. Breaking: Breaking is the practice of breaking boards, bricks, or other objects with a technique. Breaking is often used to demonstrate the power and precision of Taekwondo techniques.

Taekwondo Belt Ranking System Explained

Like other martial arts the taekwondo belt system is a way to signify your level of knowledge and experience in the martial art as well as provide a tool for motivation and goal setting.

In general, the Taekwondo Belt Ranking System starts with white belt for beginners, and progresses through the following colors:

  1. Yellow Belt
  2. Green Belt
  3. Blue Belt
  4. Red Belt
  5. Black Belt

Taekwondo Competitions

In a taekwondo competition, there are typically several ways to win:

  1. Points: A competitor can score points by landing kicks and punches to specific target areas on the opponent’s body. Points are awarded based on the technique used and the location of the strike. The competitor with the most points at the end of the match is declared the winner.
  2. Knockout: If a competitor lands a powerful strike that causes their opponent to fall to the ground and be unable to continue, it is considered a knockout and the match is immediately over.
  3. Disqualification: A competitor can be disqualified from the match for various reasons, such as performing illegal moves, violating rules, or unsportsmanlike conduct.
  4. Referee’s decision: In some cases, if the match ends in a tie, the referee may make a decision on who the winner is based on their performance throughout the match.

It’s worth noting that the specific rules and scoring system can vary depending on the level and type of competition, so it’s important for competitors to be familiar with the rules before participating.

General Taekwondo Rules Summed Up

  1. Start of Fight: Matches only start upon the referee’s signal. Prior to this, opponents must bow to each other and the referee as a display of sportsmanship and respect.
  2. Protective Equipment: Athletes must wear a helmet that exposes the face and a padded vest during competition for safety and accurate scoring.
  3. 20-Point Gap Rule: If a competitor gains a 20-point lead, the match ends immediately and the leading competitor is declared the winner.
  4. Penalties: Penalties can be given for a variety of infractions, such as falling, stepping outside the fighting arena, and being inactive for too long. Any penalty awarded results in 1 point for the opponent.
  5. Sudden Death Round: If the score is tied after three rounds, a one-minute fourth round is added. The first to score one point in this round wins the competition.

Scoring in Taekwondo Competition

The first element to understand is that Taekwondo competitions focus on striking techniques, particularly kicks.

Most points are awarded for powerful and well-executed kicks that make contact with the opponent’s head or body.

Taekwondo Scoring System

ActionPoints Awarded
Punch to the Body1 Point
Kick to the Body2 Points
Kick to the Head3 Points
Turning Kick to the Body4 Points
Turning Kick to the Head5 Points
Knockdown+1 Point To Original Points Awarded
Penalty to Opponent+1 Point To The Opponent

Explanation of Actions

  1. Punch to the Body: A punch to the opponent’s body, delivered with force and landing on the protective gear, earns 1 point.
  2. Kick to the Body: A straight or hooking kick to the opponent’s trunk scores 2 points.
  3. Turning Kick to the Body: If you turn your body and deliver a blow to the opponent’s trunk with the top or bottom of your foot, it’s scored as 4 points.
  4. Kick to the Head: Kicks to the opponent’s head protector with the bottom or top of the foot earn 3 points.
  5. Turning Kick to the Head: Turning kicks to the head are highly scored with 5 points due to their complexity and difficulty.

What Gear or Apparel Do You Need for Tae Kwon Do Training?

In Taekwondo, a few essential items are required to make sure you are prepared for training.

First and foremost, you’ll need a Taekwondo uniform (also know as a Dobok) – typically white in color and made from a lightweight cotton blend. The uniform consists of a jacket and roomy pants, both designed to allow optimal movement and flexibility.

Another essential piece of gear for Taekwondo practitioners is a belt – which not only symbolizes rank, but also helps hold the uniform jacket in place.
Changing belt colors as you progress through the ranks is a very significant and motivating achievement. (It’s also important to practice tying the belt correctly, with an even length on each side, as a sign of respect for the martial art and your skills.)

Finally, for sparring purposes, you’ll need Taekwondo-specific protective equipment. This includes a headguard, mouthguard, forearm guards, shin guards, hand protectors, and groin guard. Some schools may require foot protectors as well.

Always check regulations at your specific training academy, as requirements vary from school to school.

Tae Kwon Do Equipment Summed Up:

  • uniform (Dobok)
  • belt
  • sparring equipment:
    • headguard
    • mouthguard
    • chest guard
    • shinguards

What is Tae Kwon Do Training Like?

Taekwondo training typically begins with a warm-up and stretching routine, followed by guided exercises, technique/form practice, and maybe sparring.

TKD Training:

  • Warm up
  • Guided exercises
  • Technique/form practice (poomsae)
  • Sparring

From there, instructors guide students through a variety of exercises, which help to hone their skills in different aspects of the martial art. Though Taekwondo training varies depending on the school and instructor, there are some core components you can expect to experience.

One aspect of Taekwondo training involves practicing basic techniques and forms, known as “poomsae.” Poomsae serves as a foundation for all Taekwondo practitioners, teaching them discipline, balance, and precise control over their movements. A

Another key element of Taekwondo training is sparring, which allows students to apply their skills in a controlled, competitive setting.
Sparring fosters an understanding of timing, strategy, and distance, all necessary concepts for excelling in the martial art. It also provides an opportunity for students to test their skills against opponents of varying skill levels, building confidence and enhancing their overall understanding of Taekwondo.

Is there Grappling or Weapons in Tae Kwon Do?

In its traditional form, Tae Kwon Do is predominantly a striking martial art, focusing on punches, kicks, and knee strikes.

Grappling and weaponry is not found or usually taught in the core curriculum, and students mostly practice footwork, patterns, and sparring techniques that involve impressive high kicks, flying techniques, and fast, powerful strikes.

However, some gyms more focused on self defense may include some grappling and weapons training.

How Long Does It Take to Learn Tae Kwon Do?

For most individuals, getting started in Tae Kwon Do is relatively easy; they can learn basic techniques and forms within a few months. However, mastering the art and attaining a black belt usually takes years of ongoing, diligent practice and commitment to the martial art.

You can expect the basic kicks come within the first six months or so. After refinement of techniques and more advanced techniques. is usually the focus. In sparring you will usually rely heavily on the basics so you will never stop learning and refining them.

On average, it can take three to five years for a dedicated student to achieve a black belt in Tae Kwon Do.

A beginners’ progress rate through the ranks (like other martial arts) will generally depend on how often they train and their dedication to perfecting the different aspects of the martial art.

What Are the Most Powerful Kicks in Tae Kwon Do?

If I had to pick, the two most powerful kicks in Tae Kwon Do would be the side kick and the spinning hook kick.

The side kick, also known as “yeop chagi,” requires practitioners to execute a linear movement, driving the heel of their foot into the opponent’s body.

The spinning hook kick, or “dwi huryeo chagi,” is a more advanced technique that involves rotational movement and a horizontal arc with the kicking leg. The change in direction and the speed of the kick create immense power, making it a deadly weapon in the hands of a skilled practitioner.

Pros and Cons of Taekwondo

Develops physical fitness, flexibility, and coordinationSome may view the sport as too focused on competition and performance*
Teaches discipline, respect, and self-controlCompetitive sparring may be intimidating or undesirable for some and may be limited
Builds self-confidence and mental toughnessEmphasis on memorization of forms may not appeal to all learners
Provides self-defense skills and techniquesRisk of injury from high impact kicks and strikes
If school is olympic based, you won’t get much self defense training

Is Jiu-Jitsu the strongest martial art?

It’s difficult to definitively declare one martial art as the “strongest” as there are various factors to consider, such as the individual practitioner’s skill level, physical attributes, and the specific situation in which the techniques are being used.

While brazilian jiu jitsu is highly effective due to its strong emphasis on live sparring and has been proven very succesful in the realm of mixed martial arts, it does not include any striking options.

Additionally, there are other highly effective martial arts such as:

  • Muay Thai
  • Boxing
  • Wrestling
  • Judo

What we can say is that if you are interested in learning one of the best martial arts for self defense or becoming a well rounded martial artist you should spend a large amount of your training learning Brazilian jiu jitsu.

Is Jujitsu better than Taekwondo

Jujitsu is better than taekwondo at taking down, controlling, and submitting an attacker or opponent.

Brazilian jiu jitsu provides endless grappling and ground based fighting options that taekwondo simply does not have an answer for.

While jiu jitsu doesn’t include any striking, bjj can effectively still deal with the striking found in taekwondo, but taekwondo cannot deal with the grappling techniques of bjj.

Why is Jiu-Jitsu better than Taekwondo?

Due to the nature of training and the objective of each martial art, jiu jitsu is better suited to successfully control an assailant.

Taekwondo does have a variety of efffective strikes and kicks, but striking alone is not enough to control and defend against an attacker.

In a one on one scenario, having a deep knowledge of jiu jitsu or grappling, will beat anyone with only a striking martial arts background (and no grappling experience).

Is Taekwondo Effective in a Real Fight?

Tae Kwon Do is effetive in a real fight, but again relying on the strikes and kicks of the martial art alone will leave you vulnerable to the grappling based martial arts such as wrestling, samob, judo, or bjj.

When it comes to self defense, effectiveness of the martial art can vary because of your opponent and environment.

Here are some of the things that can play a a big factor in street fights or self defense scenarios: 

  • Weight class – you may have a bigger opponent and due to their weight, your strikes may not be as effective as you think 
  • Weapons and aggressiveness – there can be scenarios wherein the other person is holding a blade or knife and you will have to keep distance
  • Reach- they can be taller and the distance may vary so your reach to attack can be limited since you will have to find openings to your advantage
  • Mulitpler attackers – no martial art is truly able to deal with mutliple attackers so again the best option in any real fight altercation is to turn and run

Jiu jitsu or taekwondo for self defense?

Jiu Jitsu and Tae Kwon Do are both effective for self defense. But just like anything, there will always be advantages and disadvantages. 

Like I mentioned earlier, Tae Kwon Do is all about striking. 

You are capable of attacking multiple opponents with your kicks and punches. However, there is no guarantee that your punches and kicks will land and create a big impact that can give you an advantage over the situation. 

While Jiu Jitsu is for one on one fights. 

You may be caught in a fight where your opponent is bigger or taller than you, but this does not give you any disadvantage at all

Brazilian jiu jitsu was made for a bjj trained athlete to effectively control and submit a large opponent.

It’s all about technique and finding ways to control your opponent until help arrives or win by gaining the upper hand through dominating positions and submissions. 

Jiu-Jitsu vs Taekwondo vs Karate

Jiu-Jitsu, Taekwondo, and Karate are all martial arts that originated in different parts of the world and have unique techniques and philosophies.

Jiu-Jitsu is a grappling-based martial art that originated in Japan and focuses on using leverage and technique to overcome larger opponents. It emphasizes ground fighting and submission techniques, such as joint locks and chokes, to defeat an opponent. Jiu-Jitsu also has a strong emphasis on self-defense and practical applications in real-life situations.

Taekwondo is a Korean martial art that is known for its dynamic and powerful kicking techniques. It emphasizes speed, agility, and flexibility, and places a strong emphasis on kicking, but also includes punches, blocks, and strikes. It has a competitive aspect and is practiced as an Olympic sport, with scoring based on strikes to designated target areas on the body.

Karate is a Japanese martial art that focuses on striking techniques, such as punches, kicks, and elbow strikes. It emphasizes powerful, linear movements and uses body mechanics to generate maximum force in its techniques. Karate also has a strong emphasis on discipline, mental focus, and character development.

In terms of self-defense, Jiu-Jitsu is more effective for self defense scenarios since it allows you to control your opponent using techniques that are not meant to harm severly injur them

In terms of fitness, all three martial arts offer a great workout that can improve strength, endurance, flexibility, and overall health. Jiu-Jitsu and Karate tend to offer more strength and endurance training, while Taekwondo places a stronger emphasis on cardiovascular fitness and agility.

Ultimately, the choice between Jiu-Jitsu, Taekwondo, or Karate depends on personal preferences, goals, and what is available in your area.

If you intend to be a complete martial artists and do not have any grappling background already you should strongly consider adding some bjj training. It is a staple of MMA for good reason.

While knowing bjj may not always win you a fight, not knowing bjj will almost certainly lose you a fight (if your opponent knows it)

Is Taekwondo in MMA?

Mixed Martial Arts has been dominating the martial arts industry today and if you’re wondering is taekwondo in mma, then the answer is yes.

It should be noted that mix martial arts forces only the most effect martial arts to be used. While Taekwondo is found in MMA it may not be one of the most popular martial arts used by fighters.

Most fighters will be forced to become adept at all of the below martial arts:

  • brazilian jiu jitsu
  • wrestling
  • muay thai
  • boxing

From there they may choose to specialize in a particular martial arts.

In regards to taekwondo, you can find professional UFC players who hold Black Belts in Tae Kwon Do and have been applying their art in different fights in combination with the more common martial arts shown above.

Here are some of the biggest names in the UFC with Tae Kwon Do background: 

  1. Anderson Silva – undefeated in 16 UFC fights from 2006-2013 holds a 5th degree dan (blackbelt)
  2. Anthony Petis – started Tae Kwon Do at age 5 and holds a 3rd degree dan (blackbelt)
  3. Yair Rodriguez- started at age 5 and has been different nerve wracking kicks in the his UFC fights 

Does Jiu Jitsu Have Striking?

Again, there is no striking at all in this sport

Like I said earlier, it’s also known for being “the gentle art” which is all about dominating your opponent by finding the best position to give yourself openings to submit them.

Helio Gracie, one of the founders of BJJ said that he used to be weak and smaller than his brothers, that’s why the techniques and movements that they created for Jiu Jitsu can be applied even if your opponent is taller and bigger.

So in a one on one street fight, if you know BJJ then you will likely have the advantage and be able to better control the situation when compared to TKD.

Are Jiu-Jitsu and Taekwondo Olympic Sports?

Yes, both Jiu-Jitsu and Taekwondo are recognized as Olympic sports, but only Taekwondo has been an official part of the Olympic program.

Taekwondo was introduced as a demonstration sport in the 1988 Seoul Olympics and became an official Olympic sport during the 2000 Sydney Olympics. As a result, Taekwondo has been a popular event in the Olympic Games, featuring athletes from all around the world competing at the highest level of the discipline.

While Jiu-Jitsu has not yet made its way into the official Olympic program, it is recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as a distinct martial art. This recognition has boosted the sport’s global growth and popularity, which led to its inclusion in international multi-sport events, such as the World Games, Asian Games, and the Pan American Games.

Taekwondo vs Jiu Jitsu: Conclusion

So whats the answer to taekwondo vs jiu jitsu?

Both sports are going to be very useful in terms of self defense and fitness. But it’s still up to you which type of art you want to learn. 

One is a grappling based martial art and the other is a striking based martial art.

Their approaches are very different from one another, but they’re definitely able to create individuals who are capable of protecting themselves and others when put in a dangerous situation.

Hopefully, this post gave you some info and from here, I’d recommend trying out the martial art that interested you more.

Here are some posts to help you do just that:

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