What is the Best martial art/ self defense for teenage girls?

hey guys!!! I’m planning to enroll in a Self defense/martial arts class. You know, for fitness and selfe defense. WHat do you think i should take and why?

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26 Responses to What is the Best martial art/ self defense for teenage girls?

  1. Axel says:

    You should enroll Ballet.
    Use those spinning kicks to knock out

  2. TLE_MGR says:

    Judo or Jiu Jitsu. Probably Judo so you can use your opponent’s strength against him or her.

  3. Andy M says:

    Handgun Kwon Do, or Pepper spray Jitsu, or even Tai Kwon Kick-in-the-nuts.

    Or (seriously) something like Krav Maga, which deals with real life situations such as having a gun pointed at you or fighting multiple people. I can tell you what not to do, Karate, maybe it was just the place I went to but the stuff I learned in there was very impractical and silly, more flashy than useful. Jiu Jitsu or Judo could also be good, since many fights end up on the ground (though Krav Maga incorporates the more street- wise parts of Jiu Jitsu and Judo, such as takedowns, ankle locks, and chokes). The thing you got to look out for is thoes ‘Mc Dojos’, make sure you find a real good quality place with good instructors.

  4. ATWolf says:

    ‘lo, chinita. I’m 18 and a girl as well. Been in Tae Kwon Do for 5 years. (Think that’s impressive? Well, there are many people that have been in the martial arts longer than I’ve been alive… :-)

    That being said, I tell anyone who asks this question: if you are interested in self-defense and self-defense only, then martial arts isn’t for you.

    Yes, martial arts training can help with self-defense, but it’s just one *very limited* layer of personal protection. The best method of self-defense is prevention… namely, not getting into a situation in which you have to defend yourself, in the first place.

    I strongly encourage you to visit this site: http://www.nononsenseselfdefense.com/

    And if anyone tells you to take a popular MMA (mixed martial arts) style, such as Muay Thai or Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, regard their advice with a gallon of salt.

    I say this because the thing is, MMA is sport. So is Muay Thai, BJJ, Tae Kwon Do, and a lotta other styles I haven’t mentioned. And the thing with sports martial arts is that their techniques tend to rely on strength and size. They also are designed to minimize the chances of serious damage/death to their opponent. Entire targets are left out– ie., the eyes and the neck. Dedicated attacks to specific areas can and _will_ result in permanent damage, if not death. You’d have very few competitiors for the UFC if crippling injury or death were very likely possibilities.

    As a teenage girl, if you’re attacked, you can pretty much expect your opponent to be bigger and/or stronger than you are. So be wary if a 6′ 200-pound muscular guy tells you that *you* can take out Mr. Big Bad using his sports-based system…

    (And don’t buy into the grappling craze, either… although grappling relies more on leverage instead of brute force, the ground is the absolute last place you want to go in a physical confrontation– *especially* if you’re attacked by a would-be rapist.)

    I’m not saying that sports-based systems are completely devoid of self-defense application; they have valuable components. But unless you have a competent instructor that can recognize and point out these components, and also point out where his style is deficient (ie., Tae Kwon Do is purely striking; there is no emphasis on groundfighting), you most likely won’t know the more technical differences between sportsfighting and self-defense.

    And I haven’t even touched on the surface of legal repercussions. 8-|
    You have to make sure that what you did qualifies as “self-defense” in the eyes of the law. The legal definition of self-defense is *extremely* narrow. Legally speaking, you can’t stomp on a guy *after* you’ve droppped him with a neck chop, even if he’s a sicko who tried to rape you– that’s assaut.

    Too little force, and you’re dead or in the hospital. Too much force, and you could end up sued or in prison.

    I’m assuming you’re in school… so know this: you can very well be expelled for using *any* force on school property. So violence is really an absolute last resort. (see the end of my post about “Zero Tolerance”)

    I know I said it before, but it bears repeating: visit http://www.nononsenseselfdefense.com/ and take a poke around that site. The man who wrote that site knows what he’s talking about.

    While you’re at it, check out the “Zero Tolerance” section of that site. Scroll down to the bottom of the homepage; they will have links down there.

  5. Xin Yao says:

    Something very practical and meant for self defence. I would recommend Krav Maga or if you have a school near you, you should go to a Jeet Kune Do school.

  6. ChicanoStyle says:

    In my opinion it would have to be krav maga it is a very violent and effective art and it definitely save your life if you take it seriously. Just like with other arts you just need to be dedicated

  7. imthemeek says:

    my three daughters and I take American Kenpo Karate. Its practical attacks. Its more of a self defense. There are many types of martial arts, and many sub-types for each kind as well.

  8. jay j says:

    -i would do jujitsu, judo, shooto box (probably spelled wrong), combat hopkido (there are diff’ styles of hopkido, but in my opinion combat hopkido is the best style of hopkido), kajukenbo, or krav maga.

    -i asked a question in this web site and many said that one should do a hybrid style. A style that is a mixture of styles, and i would have to agree. for self defense do a style that works w/ ground and striking.

    – listen to andy m about mc dojos. Mc dojos are martial arts schools that are more into making money than student’s skills. I would look up martial arts instructors before taking his or her class.

    – also Goju-Ryu karate and sang shu kung fu sounds promising.

  9. kevin pan says:

    thats a hard question, i did kungfu, kendo, kickboxing,self defense, aikido, wrestling…. i think somebody above said something very good. the best self defense is not to get into any situation. i was a good kickboxer won over 100 matchs and only last one. i won over 100 wrestling matches lost few. im a ok kendo fencer too. btw: kickboxing beats all taekowndo and other martial arts coz i never lost to them before. and you know what? i dont even know if i can won in a street fight for 100%!!! so dont be into any shitty situation!!

    in the end, learn a self defense class is the best for you. yeah, the class is self defense and usually best for girls to use. ( i am very good at that and i am a guy, i dont even know why i learned it but yeah…it is good!! trust me!! t
    here wont be any body able to rape me!! )

  10. Ken C says:

    Take any traditional martial arts discipline that you can find in your area, that works with your schedule, that fits your budget, and that you are energized to participate in.

    Visit all the local schools, talk with the instructor/s, chat with the students, and observe a few classes. Take a few classes if that is possible. This will give you a good idea of what to expect.

    You are far more likely to stick with someone and something you actuall like and enjoy – so take some time, choose wisely, and begin the journey of a lifetime.

    Good luck!

    Ken C
    9th Dan HapMoosaKi-Do
    8th Dan TaeKwon-Do
    7th Dan YongChul-Do

  11. Silent One says:

    when it comes to a decision of various arts your going to hear a lot of different opinions on what are considered the best choice. Many of them are going to sound great and will be reasonably useful no matter what you pick. However, all of the martial arts offered so far are forgetting one of the most terrifying parts of a fight, and that is being in the correct frame of mind. It is not an easy thing to decide when, where, and how you fight. Remember that you are in fact yourself and take that in to account.

    consider these simple questions before you choose an art:
    1.) Can I murder someone for attacking me? There are a lot of people who can, there are just as many who could not. You need to soul search and find out if you can truly murder someone or if you need to find a combat system that does not involve murdering your assailant.

    2.) Should I be considering opportunity weapons or do I only want to fight with my hands? some arts offer training in makeshift weapons or weapons at the ready. This can be anything from the dirt under your feet to the pepper shaker at a local restaurant. There are a number of arts that think this form of training is not wise because the availability of weapons could leave you with only your hands. They believe it makes more sense to train with your hands over using weapons because no matter the circumstance you will always have arms.

    3.)What will my fitness level allow me to do? A common mistake people make entering the martial arts is doing so in poor physical condition. I am one of those people in fact, the first day I started martial arts training I passed out cold after 45 minutes. I had a very unhealthy diet that left me deprived of natural sugars. I went into shock very similarly to diabetic shock. I have also seen husky people harm themselves falling to the mats among a large variety of other things leading to self injury.

    4.)Should I consider training with a standard weapon? Carrying a weapon could be the difference between winning and losing a fight. My opinion of this subject is bias but I advise learning how to fight with a knife. Street crime is usually committed with knives or guns. If you are not a gang member or a part of drug culture the likely hood is your assailant will have and wield a knife against you. the reason to train with a knife is simple, if your not carrying your own steal their’s.

    I will be honest, I carry knives on my person during all of my waking hours. They are a tool not only for self defense and the martial arts but practical application and general survival as well. A knife is a tool before it is a weapon. It can do anything from open boxes to cutting away seat belts after a car wreck.

    There exists reasons not to learn knife fighting though. I hate to admit this but it is rather painful. Learning passing techniques (from one hand to the other), rolling techniques (going from the forehand to backhand grip) and active techniques (fighting) will get you cut up if you are not careful and respectful on the sharp edge. If your not a patient person it may not be a wise choice because you can hurt yourself just as much as an assailant if you don’t know what you are doing.

    5.) Why am I learning self-defense and/or the martial arts? Remember what your main goal is, some people take up the martial arts to get in shape, others for sport, some for self-defense. Whatever that main goal is do not lose it. I take martial arts for the self defense applications, I grew up in gang territory so I felt it necessary to learn how to best defend myself.

    As far as my actual recommendation goes I strongly advise a martial art that is related to your body size. In order for american karate to be affective you have to be tall and weigh at least 150 pounds. For krav manga to work you need to have very powerful muscles and also weigh at least 150 pounds. Because of this I advise the following combat systems:

    1.)Ninjutsu (this technique was built by Japanese warriors and focuses on soft targets using understanding of the human body. Japanese people are generally not very tall or heavy making this an excellent choice. It is my favorite form of combat because I’m a small short person.)
    2.) Pencak Silat (this art was formed in Indonesia. It is known for brutality and rapid strikes with a knife. They use bone structure against the assailant to break the enemy’s body until they are no longer able to fight. They also teach the usage of at the ready and makeshift weapons. I train with my knives using this art moreso then ninjutsu knife techniques.)
    3.)Aikedo (A lot of people knock this art because of its abuse of grappling. Every technique involves using pain to force an enemy to submit or break. This art uses the body weight of an enemy against them. I am not completely sure about the history of this art but it is definitely suited to smaller people.)

    If you decide to train with a knife please do not get a knife made of cheap material. Those shops in the mall are selling art, not weapons. A knife is a tool you have to trust your life to and I can say with complete ease that I trust the following knife companies with my life:
    1.)Emerson Knives (they make the best hard use knives in the world. If a United States Navy Seal trusts their life to an Emerson then I sure as heck do.) http://www.emersonknives.com
    2.)Benchmade (This knife company makes very serious high quality knives using the best possible materials. Many of their knives are designed to be used in both hands making them ideal combat weapons.) http://www.benchmade.com
    3.) Microtech (This company has the best automatic OTF knives in the world. Many of these knives are illegal in just about the entire United States of America so I advise looking up your state and local knife law before considering one for purchase. They are ungodly fast and make for excellent weapons.) http://www.microtechknives.com
    4.) Spyderco (this company has a lot of good quality knives available for reasonable prices. They are a little small for my taste but they do offer excellent combat knives.) http://www.spyderco.com

    Hails to the prepared,

  12. Ray H says:

    Kajukenbo – it’s highly effective.

  13. keti93 m says:

    shotokan karate-do

  14. idai says:

    Hi there

    Like ATWolf has already said martial arts classes are for people that want to learn martial arts or some form of sports fighting. Self defense is a completely different beast. The best thing to do would be to check to see if anyone is running a woman’s self defense course in your area. These courses are designed specifically for this purpose and cover other aspects that you wouldn’t normally do in a martial arts class. Personally i think they should change the name from self defense to self awareness as its more important to understand why these attacks happen and how you can prevent yourself from becoming a potential victim rather than learning fighting techniques.

    But if you want to learn martial arts then thats ok too. 😉

    Just don’t get the two confused with each other.

    Best wishes


  15. Beatchanter says:

    Go around to different dojos, if you have the time, and look up styles on youtube (see if they’re available near you too) and see what you like. All martial arts are effective (to differing degrees depending on body size, speed, health etc) but even more so if you enjoy what you’re doing. It’s therefore more important you’re doing a style you want to do, than what someone else says is more effective. If you enjoy it, you’ll stick to it, and master it, and therefore become more effective.

  16. sune_templar says:

    You should check in your area to see what’s available. Out of those available, I’d recommend checking into those that are “internal” styles. An internal style can be very effective but it doesn’t require massive amounts of strength to overpower your opponent. Not to mention that it is great for your health (but martial arts in general are all good for your health).

    FYI, the opposite of the “internal” (or soft) style is the “external” (or hard) style. This would be something such as Karate, Tae Kwon Do, and Muay Thai. Examples of soft styles would be Wing Chun or Mantis kung fu.

    I hope this helps. Also, make sure you try out the classes first before you sign up. Make sure you feel happy and comfortable training there.

  17. Shienaran says:

    The hundred meter dash. Easy to learn, proven to work.

  18. isconfused says:

    try arnis de mano.

  19. DEREK E says:

    If you are looking to participate in martial arts to learn self defense then do not look at a commercial school. They all follow curriculum that is set by a governing organization and 90% of the time very little attention is paid to actual self defense.
    The best martial arts for defense; for you, are not going to be arts that go to the ground. If you are petite your attacker will use his weight to overpower you in any ground match and you will lose.
    I would suggest Krav Maga. Practitioners of this martial art do not participate in tournaments and get trophies. They train to face realistic combat situations for self defense. It has been battle proven and is a great cardio workout. Most importantly though it prepares you physically and mentally to face a real life situation against a single and multiple attackers.
    Good luck… do your research before choosing an art.

  20. gretsch16pc says:

    Check your phone book for a Kenpo school in your area and if not listed try giving your M/A supply a call and ask them for information on Kenpo. If one is within your drive (I use to drive almost 30 miles each way, for 10 years) go and check out some of the classes, ask some questons and don’t for get to take notes. Ask about contracts, monthly fees and belt testing fees, cost of a gi (uniform) plus the patches, sparring equipment cost.
    Check out http://www.youtube.com and enter a few names like, Ep Parker, Frank Soto, Lee Wedlake and Jeff Speakman or KENPO demo in the search box.

  21. Headtotoe says:

    Any class that spends more time actually fighting than everyone standing in rows throwing kicks and punches into the air. Also avoid fighting styles that place entire emphasis on counter punching and in trying to avoid fights or that constantly tell the class to only use defensively. I think that any self defense technique that discourages you to attack first is a mistake. If a woman or a man needs to defend herself it is better to come out swinging rather than wait for opponent to attack. I would rather get an assualt charge or get sued then get seriously hurt, disfigurement, or death. There would be a jury at your trial but not at your funeral, better to be judged by twelve than carried by six.

  22. deej1188 says:

    Hey, I’m 18 years old and like 5’5. I chose Judo naturally because it literally means “the gentle way” in Japanese and it is effective for shorter people. I remember Tae Kwon Do and karate as a child and seeing some 12 year olds kicking balsa wood planks and earning their black belts cuz they could do memorized forms in front of judges. Then in high school, our health teacher did the self defense unit…breaking pinkies and sticking your car key in someones eye seemed practical, but as I hopefully (as a male) will never be raped, I knew most of my fights would stem over something that didn’t call for blinding someone w/ my keys.

    I moved on and heard that Krav Maga was an extremely effective style taught to soldiers. However, upon attending the class, I found out that this was taught to soldiers for a reason. Many of the skills learned were to actually kill people…and not just maybe kill, these things would ensure death. When I’m out on a friday night near the UAlbany campus and some Long Island frat weekend warrior picks a fight w/ my cuz he just drank a bottle of Vodka, I’m not really interested in killing him.

    So pretty bummed out on my quest, I decided to take some basic boxing classes to ensure my punches were effective. At the class, I met a guy who mainly focused on Judo and BJJ. Only taking boxing because it came free w/ the gym membership, he explained to me why although boxing is very effective and a great sport to participate in, there are ways to negate much of its effectiveness. After everyone was gone,he wanted to demonstrate what he meant so he told me to attack him. Before I could get even a few quick jabs in, he had my arms locked up, broke my balance, swept me to the ground and put me in an armbar. Although i was impressed, I asked what you would do if this was a self defense situation after the armbar, theres no escape path besides breaking the guys elbow (Which of course everyone if afraid to get sued over). So he did the exact same thing again except this time put me in a choke.

    choking someone out is the most effective way to defend yourself without giving your attacker any visible signs to take to court.

    Judo is very fun and the only mindless reps involved are when we are practicing a throw. This isn’t even boring because you are throwing someone to the ground every time. You build endurance, burn loads of calories at each session and best of all, you don’t endure physical beatings every class. My roommate is a hardcore Muay Thai student and although I can seriously say that Thai boxing is awesome, they hit their shins w/ wood to toughen their shins. He comes back w/ bruises like you wouldn’t believe. I’d like to show dedication like that but I like to derrive fun from the practice as well as the result.

    So, I recommend Judo as the fun, practical martial art. A properly executed throw required little effort and will have an attacker stunned on the ground while you make your exit. As a short guy, when I encounter a menacing 6’4 guy who wants to beat the crap out of me, I don’t have to rely on punching his body because I can’t even reach his face. I simple take down and then my options are endless. I’ll leave you w/ a youtube clip of the first throw I learned. Its still one of my favorites…not the best in practical situations but a blast to do.


  23. crystal_landsiedel19@yahoo.com says:

    I would recommend Taekwondo. I am actually enrolled in Taekwondo. And I love it. I was in MMA for a month but didn’t like it. I learn more in Taekwondo.


  24. Vince M says:

    Being a teenage girl, it wouldn’t matter if you had 5 black belts and were the Brazillian Jiu Jitsu champ of the world. If you were attacked by a fully grown man, on drugs, trying to rape you, you would be completely helpless.

    The only thing you can do to tip the odds in your favor is to carry weapons, and know how to use them. Guns are obviously the primary choice, but being a teenage girl im assuming you won’t be able to carry guns for a few more years. Knives are the next best thing, and can be carried in most states by age 16 (18 in some places) as long as the blades are single edged, and less than 4 inches long. Double check with your local police department for the laws in your area before carrying.

    If you decide to carry, make sure you keep your knife(s) in the same place(s), i.e. belt, pocket, ankle, etc., and make sure they are at the ready. DO NOT carry knives in your purse. You wont be able to reach them in time should you be attacked.

    I would recommend Krav Maga, or any Filipino knife fighting art as the only styles worth pursuing for true self defense. Google “Filipino knife fighting” and check out some stuff that comes up. The reason I believe Filipino knife training is superior to most styles is because it was forged on the steets and on battlefields when every violent encounter potentially meant life or death. Krav Maga began the same way in Israel. Things haven’t changed much. Violent encounters today are still life and death. You have to assume that the mugger or rapist has weapons, is trying to kill you, and also has friends. You have to learn how to handle yourself in those type of situations if you really want to learn true self defense.

    The best way to protect yourself is to just be aware of your environment. Don’t go places alone, especially at night, avoid dark alleys and parking lots, and always have your head on a swivel. Common sense, and smart choices will get you very far.

    If you just want to learn how to protect yourself from another kid at school, then I would definitely recommend boxing, wrestling, muay thai, judo, or jiu jitsu. All will get you very fit, and you will meet some really nice people as well. Good luck with your search!

  25. ning_kae_07 says:

    hi! i’m also a teenager, 15 yrs old. i regularly practice taekwondo and i think it’s very beneficial. i enjoy it so much and i learn to defend myself too. i think it’s really good for self defense. as for fitness, i don’t gain too much weight no matter what i eat. if you want you can try taekwondo, but it’s up to you what martial art you really want to study.

  26. B says:

    Hi chinita, I’ve seen some very good advice on here and with over 30 years in Martial Arts I’ve seen very bad advice as well. If your looking for strictly self-defense I would suggest Krav Maga or another art that takes advantage of a smaller frame such as Judo or Aikijitsu. My background is in Muay Thai, JKD, Kali, Wing Chun and Uech-ryu karate. I’ve also studied Judo and AikiJitsu. I hesitate to recommend Muay Thai since its more of a sport and emphasizes power techniques unless your lucky enough to find someone who teaches Muay Boran. Aikido is also a good choice since it redirects an attackers force and like Judo you use your attackers force against them but there is little grappling involved so AikiJitsu would be a better choice, in my opinion.
    Its been said that 90% of the techniques that are being taught just dont work in a real situation or only work in specific situations. You’ll see in classes where a training partner will ‘go along’ with the technique.
    In my teaching I’ve always emphasized realistic self-defense and I have student to not cooperate with their training partner when practicing a technique so they get a good idea of what works and what doesnt.
    On the whole It depends on the instructor, if his school emphasizes competition and acquiring trophies I would say to avoid this. If the instructor spends time on practical self-defense, real life scenario practice and rape defense then thats probably what your looking for.
    Hope this helps.

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