Martial arts are about knowing how to defend yourself against a potential enemy, rather than knowing how to attack others. A characteristic feature is the exclusion of any kind of firearm or weapon and the techniques used, which differ from street fights which often focus on attacking as much as defending. Contrastingly, martial arts are combat styles that are aimed at self-defense. There are different styles and many schools that specialize in different martial arts disciplines. Let’s see the best martial arts for self-defense.


This type of combat is based on other martial arts, characterized by its harmonious way of fighting and a technique similar to dancing. One of the main objectives of this discipline is to neutralize the opponent in conflict situations without using force. Aikido, in general, refuses to become a competitive sport and rejects all kinds of contests or competitions that include divisions by weight, rankings of victories or rewards. In its philosophy, it’s a sport that seeks to train its students as inspirers of peace.


It’s a contact sport characterized by mixing the techniques of boxing, karate and Thai boxing. Thai is closely related to muay thai as a sport but without the hits of elbow and knee characteristic of this discipline. It’s not considered a traditional formative martial art or gendai budō by excellence, it’s considered a combat sport.


With Japanese origins, it’s based on making blows with the edge of the hand, elbows, and feet. Modern karate-Do is mainly characterized by the use of fist punches, blocks, kicks and open hand beats, where the different techniques receive different names, depending on the area of the body. However, karate isn’t restricted to this, further variations include sweeps, throws, and takedowns, joint dislocations; besides hits to vulnerable points.


It’s a Japanese martial art that focuses on the personal defense of one or several aggressors, mostly unarmed, but in addition to this defense without weapons, admits to use other objects as defensive weapons, such as the fan, the parasol, the ropes (Hojōjutsu), the coins and different types of small cutting weapons. Its main technique is joint dislocations, and also blows, kicks, knee hits, dodges, shoves, projections, takedowns, and strangulations.

Jeet Kune Do

From Chinese, these words literally translate as: “the way of the intercepting fist”. It’s a martial arts system created by master Bruce Lee, a sport that shares many techniques with Kung Fu, but its main difference lies in its free form of expressing it and being a philosophy of life. The bases of the techniques and tactics of JKD are: efficiency, honesty, and simplicity; There are no limitations when it comes to talking about technique and punches as long as these three principles are followed, a fighter can be carried away by their imagination and take advantage of the surroundings and the style of the opponent.

Krav Magá

Is the official system of fighting and personal defense used by the Israeli Defense and Security Forces? It’s characterized for being a system that uses all kinds of empty hand techniques either punching, elbow blows, knees, bites, headbutts, and other kinds of really nasty treats for its opponents. It also contemplates skilled movements with simple weapons. Includes methods of defense against one or several attackers, in response to a wide and varied range of aggression.