MMA fighting styles

10 martial arts you never see used in MMA


Mixed martial arts have changed a lot over the years. With the rise in popularity of UFCIt is not at all surprising that the techniques and styles of MMA considered to be the best of the best have been honed.

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Most MMA fans can refer to Brazilian jiu-jitsu, wrestling, and boxing as the big three styles for most fighters. Three main styles that tend to lead to victory don’t mean there aren’t other options, but some options are better than others. There are tons of martial arts that many MMA practitioners would never even try to devote their time and effort to training.

Kung Fu

Two monks prepare for a fight

Many fans of action movies probably think kung fu is one of the best martial arts possible for combat, but that’s a pretty big misconception. While it is entirely possible that aspects of kung fu could be incorporated into MMA training, few would dare to focus solely on this discipline.

There are some pretty big holes when trying to use kung fu in a general MMA competition. One of the biggest issues is that it doesn’t prepare a fighter for any form of ground play. Couple that with the fact that it’s not usually practiced on a live opponent, and those are two key issues.

Tai chi

Tai Chi Chuan practitioner

All over the world, people have started to practice tai chi daily to exercise and relax. While it has been somewhat popularized in the mainstream, that doesn’t mean it’s a form of martial arts that would do well in real competition.

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Even many tai chi experts say that anything other than two tai chi practitioners fighting each other would be next to impossible. In the world of MMA, being unpredictable is highly sought after, and a rather rigid, predictable, and very traditional style of fighting doesn’t do much to help many fighters.



Baguazhang practitioners

The Baguazhang has a deep and fascinating history in Chinese martial arts. The problem is, something interesting doesn’t mean it’s useful in a fight against other styles of MMA. The biggest problem with this form of martial arts in terms of competition comes from its repeated use of circular motions.

Knowing that an opponent will always move, hit, and defend in relatively circular patterns gives any fighter an advantage. Knowing something like this could also allow a fighter to trick a practitioner from Baguazhang into doing exactly what he wants.

Wing chun

Learn Wing Chun._SX1080_ Cropped

Wing Chun could be beneficial in many ways in MMA competitions, but it depends on the individual practitioner. The style itself is incredibly dangerous as many of the strikes are actually focused on vital parts of the body like the throat and eyes. MMA fans will of course know that such strikes are illegal.

The technique could come in handy in his kicks that target weak areas of the ankles and knees, but when targeting those areas a fighter has to weigh the idea that they could end a career in an instant against l idea of ​​being the tallest.


Aikido fight

Anyone who knows a lot about Aikido should know exactly why it is not used in MMA. The whole philosophy of martial arts revolves around the idea of ​​not harming opponents. In a world where most fights end up inflicting more pain than an opponent can handle, it’s hard to see where Aikido fits.

Using this art form to control the opponent’s hands and wrists is also something that is not permitted under the current rules of most MMA competitions. There’s a good chance most fighters will stay on the sidelines when they hear it’s not about hurting an opponent, however.


An intense Capoeira fight

While a fighter could use various Capoeira techniques, using it as a fighter’s only fighting style would almost certainly be a disaster. It would be a surprise if you made it through an MMA event where a punch was not the first punch thrown in at least one game. Capoeira does not recommend the use of punches.

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While the dynamic fighting style would be beneficial in spicing up a fighter’s list of moves, the simple is generally more effective than the flashy. Trying to land a flashy strike can end up leaving a fighter open to an even more brutal block.

Jeet Kune Do

Bruce lee still

Bruce Lee fans will recognize Jeet Kune Do as the martial art he created. While the style actually epitomizes what made MMA great, it has for the most part become obsolete in competition. Apparently, Lee wanted to make sure that all of Jeet Kune Do’s techniques were useful in real-life situations.

It is this focus on real world fighting that has given Jeet Kune Do more of a technique that is forbidden in the world of MMA. If a fighting style isn’t already very viable for competition, and some of the skills a fighter needs to learn aren’t usable, it’s hard to justify spending time learning it.


Great sumo match

While sumo wrestling can be one of the most exciting things to watch, it’s not a skill that translates well in MMA. The biggest problem is that sumo wrestlers focus on pushing their opponent out of a ring rather than inflicting severe damage on their opponent.

Someone using sumo techniques would have a hard time being trapped in the octagon with a world class striker. Most sumo fighters would be competing against super heavyweights who are already known for their devastating punching power. While this can result in some one-off fights, those fights might not necessarily be so fair.

Kyusho Jitsu

Kyusho Jitsu class

On paper, Kyusho Jitsu actually appears to be beneficial for just about any MMA fighter. It focuses on using pressure points to injure more and defend yourself against an attacker. While it sounds helpful, if a fighter has the option of focusing on a pressure point, they probably have the option of focusing on a devastating submission hold instead.

Much of Kyusho Jitsu focuses on self-defense rather than actively advancing on an opponent. These self-defense pressure points aren’t as useful as a grip that can end a fight in just seconds.

Non-contact / chi martial arts

Karate students

Anyone who has spent their time in the online MMA communities has probably come across the fantastic non-contact martial arts videos that go viral every now and then. Usually the video focuses on a single man pushing back or defeating multiple attackers without ever hitting any of them.

Almost every combatant on the planet knows that these videos and therefore this style of martial art are absolutely unnecessary. The fights would be very different if the fighters didn’t even need to hit their opponents, but no one is capable of such a feat in the real world.

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