There are several hundred different types of martial arts. If you are looking into studying martial arts, below is a brief description of the most popular variations.
Martial arts are practiced for a variety of different reasons including self-defense, physical fitness, entertainment and competition. Some even consider martial arts as a way of achieving spiritual growth.
Taekwondo is a Korean martial art, combines both self-defense and attack, as a way of sport and exercise. The martial art focuses on high kicks and quick hand movements. Taekwondo is based upon the belief that the leg is the strongest and extreme reaching limb that a person has, hence having the greatest potential to be used as a powerful weapon while keeping an attacker at a distance.
The sport is very good to improve agility, power, balance, flexibility and patience.
Aikido is a kind of martial art that originates from Japan and is designed mainly for self defense. The creator of aikido wanted to make an art that a person could use to guard themselves, without causing injury to their attackers. Aikido loosely translates to “the way of harmonious spirit.” The majority of aikido is not striking, it is based on the theory that an attacker exposes themselves each time they go on the attack. The person is supposed to know the vulnerability and respond with an attack to ensure that he is not exposed himself. The defender is instructed to go with the movement of the attacker and use his momentum against him, instead of fighting against it.
Aikido also includes joint locks, a grappling system that extends the joints to their maximal degree of motion. These do not take much speed, but rather proper technique to disable an attacker.
Haidong Gumdo is a kind of Korean sword art which draws from battleground strategy and techniques to build a curriculum for mental, physical and spiritual development. Students learn forms, step drills, sitting and moving meditation, sparring as well as bamboo and straw cutting. Unlike Kendo and its Korean equivalent, Kumdo, the focus in Haidong Gumdo is not dueling but on the tactics of outdoor, pitched battles. Powerful, complex and beautiful, Haidong Gumdo is a wonderful style which can be pursued throughout your life. Haidong Gumdo means many things to many people. On the surface it is a martial system which preserves and promotes the Korean approach to sword techniques. The dynamic movements and visible power of the forms capture the eye and imagination. Graceful, flowing motion, harnessing lethal power is one way to describe Haidong Gumdo.
Judo is a competition based sport that originated out of Japan. The main purpose is to throw or takedown your opponent for points. Although it was shaped for sport and exercise, it has confirmed to be an efficient martial art in close combat through the use of leverage. greatest efficiency, minimum effort is the foundation of the martial art. With appropriate system and balance, a person can strike a much larger opponent. The most important weak point in the art of judo is the lack of any striking techniques in competition or practice.
Kickboxing can be for fitness, self-protection or sport. There are different origins of the sport. Kickboxing combines punches, knees, headbutts, and kicks to win over an opponent or attacker. A hasty front kick to the face is more than enough to disarm anyone. The key to kickboxing is speed and quickness, the person must strike before the attacker can react and respond.
Karate originated in Japan and is practiced mainly for sport. It involves the typical kicking, punching, and elbows also incorporates open hand techniques. The major focus is on attack deflection, controlling and disabling attacks that appear directly in front of you. Instead of focusing on hits to the face and head, punches are directed towards the solar plexus, just below the sternum, a weak point on the body. This will effectively knock the air out of the opponent and disable him.
Krav Maga has been designed for the use of street survival and it is taught to the whole defense force of the country. This martial art involves aspects of Jiu Jitsu grappling and ground fighting, Karate kicks and knees, and traditional boxing punches. Krav Maga is a counter attack of sorts where you defend yourself from attack, while simultaneously incapacitating the attacker. They also focus on attacking weak areas of the body, namely the eyes, and throat and groin.
If you’re interested in checking out Taekwondo in the Lee’s Summit area, check out Prime Taekwondo!