Research Outline

Martial Arts


Provide information on martial arts, schools, and martial arts learning.

Early Findings

Martial Arts in MMA

  • Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) is a martial arts based sport that has massively grown in popularity, even surpassing professional football and automotive racing in some demographics.
  • This sport combines numerous martial arts disciplines that include, but are not limited to wrestling, jiu-jitsu, boxing, kickboxing, tae-kwondo and judo.
  • Currently, many athletes practice multiple types of martial arts, with the highest success rates of fighters from individual disciplines being from wrestling, jiu-jitsu, and boxing backgrounds.


  • Wrestling is a well known and popularly practiced form of martial arts.
  • A national organization called USA Wrestling maintains wrestling club listings in every US state and sanctions events across age groups and weight classes.
  • Wrestling has shown considerable success in martial arts and consists of grappling without strikes or submissions/chokes.


  • Jiu-jitsu is a very popular and successful form of martial arts that consists mostly of submission holds/chokes.
  • While exact numbers of active jiu-jitsu gyms globally and/or in the US were unavailable, there are many extremely high-quality and prominent gyms/schools available worldwide with top-ranked professional instructors.


  • Boxing is a particularly historied martial art that can be traced back to 4,000 BC.
  • This sport consists of fighting solely with the hands/fists.
  • Some estimates of the number of boxing gyms in the US reach 7,049 locations.
  • USA Boxing is an organization that maintains lists of active boxing gyms in the US, along with sanctioned competition events in every US state.

Kickboxing Styles

  • There are many disciplines of kickboxing, including unique styles, and some that even allow certain grappling techniques, all involving both punching, kicking, and sometimes the use of knees and/or elbows.
  • Kickboxing styles can be very effective in MMA as kicks, punches, knees and elbows are allowed in competition.
  • Team USA Taekwondo maintains lists of active clubs, schools, gyms, and sporting events for taekwondo, an Olympic style of kickboxing.

Martial Arts for Self Defense -- Krav Maga

  • Krav Maga is a highly popular martial arts practice that emphasizes self-defense tactics that include street fighting, weapons use and defense, and real-world, no-rules techniques.
  • An organization called Krav Maga Worldwide lists over 150 certified Krav Maga training centers globally.
  • Common participants in this training include government employees, military and law enforcement personnel.