How Dangerous Martial Arts Really Are to Train?

How Dangerous Martial Arts Really Are? (Explained)

Like any other sport, martial arts, of any kind have the risk of injury. But how dangerous martial arts really are?

In general, it depends a lot on the nature of martial art, whether it is more or less dangerous than any average sport. It is true, that compared to badminton, for example, practicing Muay Thai you are at higher risk of injuries.

Let’s dive deeper into the topic of how dangerous different martial arts are to practice for different groups of people.

Are martial arts dangerous to practice?

As mentioned above, martial arts, like every other sport and hobby, has its own risks.

However, there are a few factors that can determine, how dangerous or safe a particular martial art is. Those factors can be for example:

  • Does the martial art include punches
  • Does the martial art include kicks
  • Does the martial art include takedowns
  • Does the martial art include weapons

On top of that, there are gym, instructor, and character-related factors when it comes to dangers of martial art and the risk of injury such as:

  • How competent is your instructor
  • How safe the gym is, mats, rings, etc.
  • How much speed do you use when training
  • How much strength do you use when training
  • Do you focus more on learning than winning

Based on these factors, it depends a lot on the martial art, but also, even more on your instructor and how you handle the learning situation of certain martial art.

Also, there is no such thing as a “safe or safest” martial art. All martial arts and hobbies, in general, have risks. The risks are just different.

For example, when practicing Brazilian jiu-jitsu, your chances of getting knocked out by a punch are a lot lower compared to boxing.

On the other hand, when boxing, your chances of breaking a finger are smaller compared to Brazilian jiu-jitsu.

Just like in badminton you have the risk of spraining an ankle, martial arts have risks.

How to avoid injuries when practicing martial arts?

There are a few very simple rules when it comes to practicing martial arts, that make them less risky.

First of all, take things slow when sparring. You are practicing to learn, not competing. Take things slow and do the techniques properly. Focus on your doing and learning, instead of trying to beat your opponent at all costs when practicing.

Second rule: use the least amount of strength needed. This is more relevant in martial arts such as Brazilian jiu-jitsu which is a highly technique-based martial art. Therefore, try to use the minimum amount of strength possible and focus more on the right technique.

Rule three: ask if you don’t understand. It is much easier to ask than to break your training partner’s arm and apologize. You are learning, the instructor is there to teach. Ask questions if you don’t understand how certain techniques are performed.

What is the safest way to practice martial arts?

The safest way to practice martial arts is to train by yourself. Therefore, you are not at risk of getting injured, due to your partner’s mistake.

You can train a lot of martial arts by yourself. For example, karate moves are often trained “alone”, without actually hitting a target.

Karate can also be learned with punching bags, just like boxing, MMA, or Muay Thai. When you are up against a boxing bag, instead of something that punches back, the risk of injury is a lot smaller.

It is true that not everything can be learned alone. However, if you want to minimize the risk of injury, learn first by yourself through YouTube videos or online courses.

After you have the basics learned, you can enter a class to learn more with other people, with less risk.

More about practicing martial arts alone on these posts:

Are martial arts dangerous for children?

Martial arts are commonly practiced among kids also. There might be various reasons why children would like to practice martial arts, or parents would want them to.

However, just like adults, also kids have a risk of injury. They might not understand as well what kind of damage their abilities can do to other children, when training, but also outside the gym.

I can not speak for everybody, but I used to practice martial arts (karate) as a child. I wouldn’t say it was a lot more dangerous than football or ice hockey, since the instructors knew what they were doing, and were not making us punch each other.

On the other hand, it is true that martial arts can cause risks and injuries to children.

It is always up to you to determine, whether the risk of martial art or any sport is worth the benefit. For me, it definitely was. It was not only fun, from time to time, but also rewarding to achieve stripes on my belt and higher belt colors.

Are martial arts dangerous for elders?

Martial arts are common among older people as well. And like everything else, they come with risks.

Martial arts, when practiced correctly can be a really fun way to stay active as you get older. The downside is the risk of an injury. Even though injuries can be avoided, there is still the risk and it can take longer time to heal, as you get older.

Age is not the factor to determine whether you are too old or not. It comes down to your physical abilities and whether your body can handle the pressure of martial arts or not.

I have talked about the topic of whether you are too old for martial arts or not on my site for several different martial arts, you can read them here:

What is the most dangerous martial art?

The most dangerous martial art to practice is more about your instructor, than the martial art itself.

However, the most dangerous and overall effective martial art to cause damage to other person is based on my research Krav Maga.

More about Krav Maga on my list of the best martial arts for self-defense, where krav maga is in the second position.

Final thoughts

In conclusion, martial arts have risks. They also come with a lot of benefits. There is no such thing as doing anything without risk. You could inhale toxins when you breathe at your home, and you are at risk of injury.

If you go out for a jog, that could be considered a safe thing to do. However, even going for a jog you are at risk of spraining an ankle or getting run over by a car.

It is always up to you to determine whether the risk is worth the benefit. In my opinion, and in a lot of other people’s opinions as well, martial arts are definitely worth the risk.

Something like a rabbit punch is really dangerous. It occurs especially in boxing and MMA from time to time.

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