Best Martial Arts for Confidence

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Martial arts help improve your physical fitness, teach you how to defend yourself, and help you improve your confidence. But what is the best martial art for confidence?

Overall, BJJ is the best martial art for improving confidence. BJJ uses technique and leverage to beat opponents who are larger and/or stronger. Over time, being able to best significantly bigger or stronger opponents, along with improved mastery of technique naturally builds confidence.

And this is also true if you are a parent looking to boost your child’s confidence.

BJJ can also be the most demoralizing martial art you can train. In fact, over 90% of people quit BJJ in the first two years of training. Let’s have a look at what other martial arts there are and whether they improve confidence too.

Do martial arts help build confidence?

Martial arts do help to build confidence.

This is because, in martial arts, you will lose your social anxiety, increase your self-belief, and get better at performing under stress. You will also get the chance to compete against total strangers and fight people larger than you.

When you train in martial arts, you have to start talking to people.

There is no way around that. And even if you are shy and don’t talk, someone else is going to talk to you. Martial arts will help you make loads of awesome friends, and this will improve your confidence.

Martial arts also boost your self-esteem. This is because you will come across opponents and challenges that you don’t think you can face. But when you overcome those challenges, it is the best feeling in the world.

Think about it, if you can have a physical fight with another well-trained human being, is there anything you can’t do? Martial artists have the most self-belief, and this translates to other areas of life. Every goal seems attainable for a martial artist.

When you practice martial arts, chances are you are going to compete.

This will mean that you face off with an unknown opponent. Training martial arts boosts your confidence, as it makes you better at dealing with and confronting the unknown.

Martial arts will help you lose your fear of failure and rejection. You will feel very comfortable in your own skin and lose your social insecurities.

And the icing on the cake is the massive ego boost you get when you annihilate someone larger than you! The small guys in BJJ and MMA gyms tend to be the most charismatic and happy. This is probably because they feel so good about pinning down guys twice their size!

Does BJJ build confidence?

BJJ helps to build confidence as you learn how to defend yourself, make friends, and compete. BJJ practitioners are very tough and disciplined. However, BJJ is very complicated, and most BJJ practitioners quit.

The thing is, nothing worth having comes easy. BJJ is one of those martial arts that is really unique. Literally, in every single class, there is sparring. And you are not just matched up with people of your size and experience level.

In BJJ, anyone can train with anyone. So, you may get the chance to spar with someone 100 lbs heavier than you!

If you are able to defeat someone that large, it massively boosts your confidence. Also, in BJJ competitions, you don’t know who your opponent is going to be. It is the purest form of competition. Competing in BJJ has helped me to get rid of my fear of the unknown.

I have learned to trust myself more and put more effort into preparing for a challenge as opposed to worrying about it.

There is something amazing about the feeling of a BJJ competition.

There is so much excitement and worry at the same time. When you win, you are over the moon. When you lose, you are devastated. BJJ is a real emotional roller coaster and is not for the faint-hearted!

However, if you are one of the people that decides to stick around, you will love the benefits of BJJ. The people that benefit most from BJJ tend to be young adults under the age of 30. You can train BJJ if you are older than that, but you may physically struggle to keep up with the demands of martial arts.

BJJ is a very complicated martial art with over 600 techniques!

If you want to learn more, check out this recent article on my site, where I talk about the top 49 most effective BJJ techniques you have to learn. I even get into the 1 move that has won more UFC fights than any other!

Just click that link to read it on my site.

Are Karate and Taekwondo good for confidence?

Karate and Taekwondo are good for improving confidence if you find other martial arts too intense. BJJ, Boxing, and MMA are not for everyone. They can be very tough on the mind and body. Taekwondo and Karate are moderately-intense martial arts.

These martial arts tend to be more “inclusive” and cater to the needs of a wide range of people. BJJ can have a more “sink or swim” type feel to it, hence the high dropout rate.

In Karate and Taekwondo, you don’t have to do sparring. You can just hit the pads, do some sequences and forms, and enjoy yourself. There is no pressure to compete.

The confidence you build from Karate and Taekwondo is less from competing and challenging yourself. It comes from the friendships you make and being included with a group.

Karate and Taekwondo are more recreational. They focus more on improving yourself physically, mentally, and socially. The focus of these martial arts is not to turn you into a fighting machine.

So, the confidence boost you get won’t be from being able to fight really well. It will be from the fact you are fitter, have more friends, and are having fun.

Karate and Taekwondo are better for children and older adults. If you want to learn how training martial arts can help your children in school, check out this recent article on my site.

What is the most intimidating martial art?

Boxing is the most intimidating combat sport. If you have ever set foot in a boxing gym, you will know what I am talking about. The pounding of heavy bags, the effort of the fighters, and the sheer intensity of the training is amazing.

Boxing is less of a martial art and more of a sport. And boxing is about physical fitness and competition as opposed to personal enrichment.

Boxing helps to improve your confidence as it gives your fitness a massive boost. Boxing is one of the best martial arts you can train if you are overweight and looking to get lean. Similarly, if you are already fit, training Boxing will help you achieve your peak athletic performance.

Boxing gyms are intimidating, but boxers themselves are actually very nice and polite people. They have been humbled through their grueling training and are very disciplined. If you have what it takes to train Boxing, then there is nothing that you can’t do.

Are there any martial arts that decrease your confidence?

Overall, any martial art can decrease your confidence. This is because martial arts are very difficult. Sometimes you will win, and sometimes you will lose. Some people will lose more than others. That’s just the way it is.

Constant failures and hardships can break your spirit.

However, those that benefit most from martial arts are the ones that go through times of difficulty with their training. Mabey, they have a long losing streak. Maybe an injury keeps them off the mats.

Or it could be that they have personal issues that mean that they can’t train as much as they would like to. If you are able to get good at something as difficult as martial arts, it is a truly amazing feeling. I have been training for decades, and the fact that I am still training, when 90% of my training partners have quit makes me feel like I am doing something right.

Perhaps the most difficult martial arts are:

  • BJJ
  • Boxing
  • Wrestling
  • MMA
  • Muay Thai

These martial arts have the highest dropout rates. This is probably because it is so hard to tell whether you are making progress or not.

In BJJ, it can take over 10 years to get a black belt. It takes about 2 years to progress one belt level! This leaves many people feeling like they are not improving, hence why they quit.

In striking martial arts, people quit because they get hit so much. It takes a really tough person to hang in striking training when you are getting hurt and will feel great about it.

How Martial Arts Helps You Build Confidence with ACTION, not thinking


Martial arts are very difficult to learn and train, and many martial arts have high dropout rates.

Martial arts can teach you how to defend yourself, make friends, and deal with failures and your doubts. This is how they make you more confident.

On the other hand, martial arts can demoralize you and make you feel like you are not good at anything. The key to benefiting from martial arts is to train at a level that is comfortable for you.

Don’t spar with the pros when you have only been training for a year!

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

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