The term striking in martial arts generally refers to stand up fighting, or everything that’s not grappling (though strikes can be executed on the ground as well). It is an often used term in mixed martial arts circles, as mixed martial arts fighters tend to combine and draw from several different stand up fighting disciplines. Therefore, striking better encompasses what they do on their feet than terms like karate or Muay Thai.
What the Striking Styles Teach
The striking styles in martial arts teach practitioners to defend themselves while in the upright position. They do this through the use of punches, kicks, knees, and blocks. Each martial arts style, however, does this in its own unique way. Thus, all striking styles are hardly created equal.
The striking martial arts styles are a part of almost every culture. That said, here are some of the more popular ones being practiced in the world today.
- Goju Ryu Karate
- Krav Maga
- Kung Fu
- Kyokushin Karate
- Muay Thai
- Shaolin Kung Fu
- Shotokan Karate
- Tae Kwon Do
- Tang Soo Do
- Wing Chun
If you're looking to learn some striking techniques, you've come to the right place. Check out some tutorials below by following the links.
- Downward Heel Kick
- Front Kick
- Front Leg Front Kick
- Hop Side Kick
- Make a Punching Fist
- Reverse Punch
- Side Kick
- Spinning Back Kick
- Upper Block
Five Great Martial Arts Strikers
It would be impossible to put together a list of the greatest strikers of all time, as there are too many variables between all the disciplines to compare. Still, here are five guys whose names are synonymous with striking.
- Muhammad Ali: Ali is widely known to be one of the greatest boxers, if not the greatest boxer, of all-time. His three fights with Joe Frazier were the stuff of legends.
- Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic: Filipovic is known to be one of the greatest MMA strikers of all-time. Coming from a kickboxing background, his ability to deliver top flight high kicks helped to revolutionize the sport.
- Bruce Lee : Beyond his legendary martial arts film career, Lee was also ahead of his time when it came to striking. Along with this, he invented the martial arts style of Jeet Kune Do , one that did away with tradition and concentrated only on what worked in real fighting.
- Joe Lewis: Lewis was voted the greatest karate fighter of all-time by Karate Illustrated in 1983. He engaged in both karate and kickboxing.
- Anderson Silva: Silva is widely considered to be one of the best MMA strikers ever. His Muay Thai clinch is known to be particularly brutal for opponents.