At Thrive Martial Arts, we are a Taekwondo studio, which to many Americans, is considered interchangeable with karate. The differences between karate and taekwondo is a question that we often get here at our dojo, but if you’re in Colorado around the Fort Collins or Windsor area in which we operate, you may have noticed that there are other local dojos in the area that teach different styles as well. So, if karate and taekwondo can be considered the same thing, what does that mean for other martial arts styles? For example, is Taekwondo the same as AMA?

As it turns out, there are major differences between Taekwondo and most other styles. Have you seen local dojos for different styles and wondered what the difference is between everything? In this blog, we’ll break down some of the differences between various martial arts styles.

Taekwondo: We will start, of course, with Taekwondo, our specialty. Taekwondo is an ancient form of Korean martial arts, and the most widely practiced form of self-defense in the world. Taekwondo is a fairly balanced form of self-defense, but it puts more emphasis on kicks than other disciplines do. Taekwondo teaches a fair amount of both offensive and defensive techniques, and overall, is one of the most “all-around” styles, making it a popular choice worldwide.

Jiu-Jitsu: Jiu-Jitsu, along with a few other martial arts disciplines, is considered a “takedown” martial art, in which the main focus is getting your opponent on the ground. It’s a fighting style that’s designed around the idea of being able to defeat an armed and armored opponent, even if you have nothing. The main idea is using your opponent’s energy against them, attacking their center of gravity and getting them on the ground to a vulnerable state. Jiu Jitsu can be ruthless once opponents are on the ground, and different variations of the discipline worldwide allow for brutal attacks.

Krav Maga: Krav Maga has become increasingly popular in recent years, despite the fact that it has no official federation or organization backing it. Krav Maga originated in Israel and is centered primarily around grappling and wrestling techniques. It’s a form of martial arts that’s designed around street survival, and taught to every member of the Israeli military. The philosophy of Krav Maga is being able to take down and incapacitate an aggressive attacker, so it’s heavily focused on defensive techniques and counterattacks. If you’re practicing Krav Maga correctly, there shouldn’t be a need to attack anymore after you’ve countered them — the defense hits hard enough to bring your enemies down.

Colorado Martial Arts Classes

We hope you’ve enjoyed the first part of this blog series. We love discussing the various types of martial arts. Despite the fact that we teach Taekwondo, there are interesting and enlightening philosophies in every discipline, and you’ll be able to have significant takeaways from every single one — one reason why famous martial artists are often trained in multiple disciplines.

Of course, for a beginner, there’s no form of martial arts that’s as well-rounded and beginner-friendly as Taekwondo. It is a self-defense style that can be utterly simple or deep as the ocean, and once you’ve started, you’ll never truly stop learning. Are you ready to get started with martial arts? At our Colorado dojos located in Fort Collins and Windsor, we offer classes for every age group. And if you don’t know if it’s your thing, no sweat! We offer trial classes that will allow you to get a feel for taekwondo. Contact us today to get started!