Everyone has seen Hollywood Chuck Norris white boy karate.
Also, everyone knows the Segal arm snap and the Van Damme Ballerina kick.
However, they are many other fighting styles out there that people haven’t even heard of.
Some fighting styles are too brutal for the ring and too ugly for the screen.
There are also age-old martial arts that have stood the test of time without being glamorized.
So are there unusual martial arts out there? There definitely is.
So here are some of them that you won’t see in strip malls.
If you’d like to see a graphical breakdown of the unusual martial arts, we got you covered:
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- 1 10 Martial Arts Forms You Haven’t Heard of
- 2 Related Questions
10 Martial Arts Forms You Haven’t Heard of
Bokator is basically a Cambodian martial art that has its roots back in the Armies of Angkor.
These armies dominated the battlefields of Indochina approximately 1700 years ago. The word Bokator means “pounding a lion”.
This refers to an ancient legend that tells of a Bokator practitioner who saw himself toe to toe with the man-eating beast.
As the story goes, the practitioner killed the beast with one perfectly placed knee strike.
This martial arts style, like many others, is based on movements and mannerisms of animals such as cranes, snakes, eagles, horses, and, of course, in this case, lions.
It is brutal and battlefield practical. There are approximately 10,000 techniques, and it is a complex art form.
#2 Rough and Tumble
Rough-and-tumble may sound like an everyday sport; however, it’s much more intense than it sounds.
In fact, it should have been called “maim and kill”.
This is because the main goal in mind when using this fighting style was developed between the 18th and 19th centuries in the Southwest of the United States.
The term “gouging” was also used to describe this fighting style because of its techniques that are actually eye-gouging.
This fighting starting cottages no holds barred ferocity.
Some fighters even filled their teeth with razor-sharp weapons, which they would use to bite off the noses, lips, ears, and fingers of their opponents.
In fact, lots of fighters lost their manhood in these cold-blooded fights.
Due to the gruesome nature of this fighting style, it is not talked about at all; neither is it practiced in civilized modern times.
Bakom has its origins in the poor shantytowns of Lima, Peru.
Nonetheless, it is a ruthless martial art that encourages you to disable and kill your opponent as quickly as possible.
However, deception and other less than honorable tactics are also encouraged, such as hidden weapons.
This fighting style is founded in the 1980s by Roberto Puch Bezada, who was a former Marine and ex-convict.
Bakom is officially considered a modern hybrid martial art since it makes use of certain jujitsu elements with Vale Tudo- style street fighting.
Some of the techniques used are bone snapping arm locks, precision strikes, and merciless chokeholds.
In addition to this, all of these techniques and both are done at a superfast pace.
So the opponent basically doesn’t have enough time to realize how much trouble they are in.
Lerdrit is an art form derived from traditional Thai fighting techniques currently practiced by the elite commandos of the Thai Royal Army.
Basically, this fighting style is based on principles that are similar to that of its predecessors, which are Muay Thai and Muay Boran.
There are a few differences, however.
Inevitably fighters are taught and encouraged to attack without warning and immediately take their opponents to the ground.
You are then encouraged to finish the fighter as quickly as possible with the devastating kill strike, such as elbows to the temple or a boot to the throat.
However, the risk of injuries is minimized by using the hard parts of the body, such as the shins, palms, knees, and elbow.
The goal is basically designed for life or death situations, so it’s not just about kicking ass; it’s also about taking lives.
Dambe is based on the ancient boxing traditions of Egypt.
It is a deadly striking art that was developed by the Hausa people who were from West Africa.
Many of them traveled the land as butchers from one village to the next performing combat ceremonies and challenging opponents.
Dambe is based on the principle of using a technique called a strong side fist, which is also referred to as the spear.
The fist is actually wrapped with a piece of cloth covered by a tightly knotted rope.
The favored leg is also chained, so you don’t just get punched in the face using this fighting style, but you also get a metal kick to get your blood going.
If you know anything about Russia, you also know that in order to survive you’ve got to be a tad bit crazy.
So it’s not a surprise that Systema is a cold and efficient way of defending yourself.
Systema is the official art form of the Russian Spetsnaz.
It focuses on controlling the important parts of the body, such as the neck, knees, elbows, waist, ankles, and shoulders as well.
This is done through pressure points and critical hits.
The principle behind this art form Is based on biomechanics and anatomy, so much of the training involves studying the natural human form and how you can manipulate it.
Another unique characteristic of this art form is that it doesn’t just focus on unarmed, One-On-One Combat as do other forms of Martial arts.
Instead, this artform teaches the practitioner or individual to deal with opponents coming from multiple directions and yielding a variety of weapons.
#7 Jailhouse Rock
You’ve probably heard of jailhouse rock.
However, if you didn’t know what it means, then it’s one of the only two martial arts that are indigenous to the United States.
It was in fact, created inside the American prison system and is the prime example of no-frills brawling.
As it is developed by men who have nothing better to do than simply work out and fight, it’s notable for its brutal training methods, one of them known as the 52 blocks.
This method involves a deck of cards that are scattered about the floor, and the person training is made to pick them up in order while being beaten mercilessly by three or more people.
#8 Kalari Payat
Kalari Payat is an art form that is indigenous to India.
It is commonly recognized as the oldest fighting system to have existed and is also a predecessor to some of the most popular martial arts in the world.
Certain traditions claim that it was created by an incarnation of the Hindu god Vishnu.
Vishnu is also described as the preserver of the universe and is said to have a universal form that is beyond the limits of human perception.
Ultimately this artform has many variations and subtypes.
Each of these variations and subtypes specialize in different facets of armed and unarmed combat.
One example is the modern on the which means hitting the vital spots.
This technique allows you to instantly paralyze or kill with a single well-placed strike to any of the approximately 108 nerve points.
The strikes are considered to be lethal.
Silat is developed by the tribes of Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines.
This art form is a collective word for hundreds of different styles of combat that include striking, grappling, throws, joint manipulation, and the use of bladed weapons.
The earliest evidence of this sport was found in Sumatra.
According to the legend, a woman created the combat system by observing wild animals, much like many other Asian art forms.
This art form today is employed by several military groups throughout the Malay Archipelago and surrounding lands.
Okichitaw is perhaps one of the few remaining examples of native Native American martial arts.
It’s based on the fighting techniques of the Plains Cree First Nations.
This art form was founded by George J Lepine, who was a student of judo, tae kwon do, and Hapkido.
He also mastered the gunstock war club and tomahawk throwing techniques.
This art form is a hybrid art that combines Native American fighting spirit with the tried-and-true methods of population Asian styles.
The techniques taught in this artform assume the position of a weapon.
Much like aikido, even if the opponent or practitioner is empty-handed. The moves are performed as if a weapon was being used.
The hands are used like Tomahawks, and the kicks jab at a distance like spears.
When did martial arts begin?
Chinese martial arts originated more than 4000 years ago.
Who created the best martial arts?
A railway engineer who also studied jujitsu while working in Japan in 1894 was the first man known to have taught Asian martial arts in Europe.
What is the hardest martial art?
When it comes to the hardest martial arts in the real world, there’s lots of debate between Krav Maga and MMA.
Depending on your personal preference, either one could take the top rank.