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Do Taekwondo and MMA Mix?

Posted on: January 8, 2016
Anderson Silva landing a kick in his opponent's face.

Anderson Silva puts his Taekwondo training to good use.

Do Taekwondo and MMA Mix?

With MMA moving to the forefront of the sports world in popularity, BJJ (Brazilian Jujitsu), Muay-Thai as well as a number of various fight styles key specific to MMA have gained much popularity. Much of the popularity of these forms have overshadowed the importance of more traditional martial arts such as Taekwondo, however time and time again we find MMA fighters with TKD training dominating the ring with explosive kicks that can only come with the training and discipline that traditional martial arts bring. Fighters such as Anderson Silva have obviously shattered the notion that there is no place for TKD in the MMA world, the question that remains for many however is whether it is a significant role. More so, how much TKD can really be transferred in the ring?

Laying the Foundation

Time and time again, the superstars of MMA are almost consistently those who were formally trained in a martial arts form before they decided to enter the arena of MMA. The hours of discipline, training, strength and endurance conditioning that comes from serious martial artists lays the perfect foundation for excellence in fighting, Taekwondo is no exception to this rule. Basic understanding of combat mechanics is also highly important. Rather than spending the majority of time learning to take a hit, martial artists learn to block, counter and react to their opponents moves. Due to an incredible amount of sparring within Taekwondo, a black belt martial artist will be tremendously prepared both physically and mentally at taking on an opponent in the ring. There is no doubt that the foundation for a good MMA fighter can be found in a Taekwondo martial artist.

Using Taekwondo in MMA

The question that is ultimately asked is whether a TKD martial artist will be able to carry over all the teachings to the MMA world. The answer to that question is sadly no, but not for the reasons you might think. Many people forget the fact that MMA is in fact a sport, while traditional martial art forms such as Taekwondo are in fact a complete self-defense system meant to protect a practitioner. So chances are if you were to use every move you learn in TKD in an MMA ring, your opponent might very well die. This doesn’t mean that TKD is not a valuable tool in the ring, on the contrary, it might be the thing that helps you most.



Where TKD is coming in handy

Taekwondo as well as many other traditional martial arts forms have been making a strong comeback in recent years simply because the nature of the fighters has become almost uniform. Watching fights has become incredibly predictable in that most fighters will almost always use the same techniques. When TKD is thrown in the mix however, it becomes very clear why Taekwondo means “the way of hand and foot”. Explosive kicks and punches can almost certainly ensure that your attacker will not have a chance to take you to the ground.


Hockman’s ATA is a dedicated Martial Arts school within Columbia, Missouri that focuses on Songahm Taekwondo and Krav Maga, the official self-defense system of many law enforcement agencies. Whether it be Karate for Kids, or our adult classes, we are dedicated to self-defense, fitness and mental as well as physical discipline, click here to find out more.

Hockmans ATA Martial Arts