What Martial Arts are Best for Building Muscle?

Certain martial arts will help you build muscle mass, while others will help you with strength and endurance. The best martial arts for building muscle mass are Taekwondo, Brazilian Ju-Jiutsu, and Judo as they all are exceptional for using muscles you tend to not use regularly.

The following 10 martial arts are excellent for offering a comprehensive cardio and aerobic workout that will address all of these issues and more to help you achieve a fitter, healthier physique.


Taekwondo focuses on building your lower body and core, as well as increasing muscles (in your back, shoulders, forearms, biceps, and triceps), stamina and endurance.

Taekwondo’s supplementary training includes a lot of aerobic and cardio activities, specifically running. Running can help you achieve a variety of fitness goals, including increasing your cardiovascular health, strengthening your bones and muscles, and lowering your mortality risk when compared to non-runners. Other high-intensity activities you’ll do while training in Taekwondo include working the agility ladder, weight training, and kick drills with dummies and heavy bags. All of these things are used to condition the body. In fact, while training, an ordinary person weighing 150-160 pounds can burn more than 700 calories per hour.

Muay Thai

 Training Muay Thai will give you a full body workout, and improve your cardio and muscle strength.

The training you’ll need to do in addition to actually completing these moves on an opponent can be difficult, but at the end of the day, you’ll improve not just your fighting skills but also your agility and mobility. It goes without saying that when you practice Muay Thai, your strength will grow dramatically. For example, you can engage your core in ways that sit ups can’t, using moves like spinning elbows and flying knees. Overall, Muay Thai training will necessitate greater conditioning and technique execution. You can burn well over 600 calories per hour on average while gaining significant muscular mass.


Judo employs a variety of joint locks, throws, and grappling techniques. Judo switches back and forth between standing-up and grappling on the ground which builds muscle and stamina. 

These approaches also force you to engage muscles you may not have used before. It also allows you to practice your reflexes. All of this may then be used as an excellent anaerobic and aerobic workout, which will help you improve your cardiovascular system and burn more calories (about 700-800 per hour), lose weight, and gain muscle.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

In Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) you grapple, lift, and toss someone who is significantly heavier than you  which helps you build functional strength fast. 

Other components of your body, such as coordination and stamina, are conditioned so that you don’t have to rely exclusively on your power. BJJ training will challenge the way you react and how quickly you react. It’s a fantastic way to build up the endurance and muscle mass you’ll need. Additionally, as with other martial arts, you can improve your metabolic process and burn more calories. The number of calories burned is mostly determined by your weight and stature, as well as the intensity with which you exercise. However, you can burn nearly 700 calories every hour on average.

Krav Maga

Krav Maga is a martial art that focuses on high output training, which will increase your overall cardio, strength and muscle tone. 

The martial art incorporates a variety of techniques, many of which are derived from other martial arts. Kicks, elbows, punches, knees, take-downs, blocks, and other techniques will be taught. This results in a high-intensity workout. Many lessons include bag training, such as focus mitts, to aid in the execution of the techniques. You get a good cardio workout while reducing weight and increasing muscle by doing this. You can also burn 500-800 calories every hour on average. To perform successfully in Krav Maga, you must have good muscle memory and know how to move rapidly. As previously said, this art is concerned with dealing with an enemy as quickly as possible. The maneuvers you learn must be performed with both strength and speed.


Wrestling consists mostly of Grappling grips, take-downs, and clinches, which is why wrestling can significantly increase static muscle strength and grip strength

Wrestlers are incredibly well-trained and disciplined athletes. You must maintain a set body weight depending on the level at which you are practicing. Beyond helping you gain strength and tone muscle, knowing how to make weight has other advantages. It has a long-term impact on your overall health. You’ll learn about correct dieting as well as how to maintain a healthy and safe weight. 

When you wrestle, you’re supposed to have a lot of stamina so you can withstand whatever your opponent throws at you and finish the match. As a result, cardio is frequently used in training. Cycling and jogging are excellent strategies to improve cardiovascular fitness, ensuring that your body is not only healthier but also capable of fighting through a match without fatigue. In terms of calories, depending on what you’re doing, you could burn over 400 per hour.


Boxing training mainly consists of hitting a heavy bag, sparring and body weight exercises. This training makes your upper body muscles bigger and stronger, but not too big.  

You can burn over 400 or 600 calories per hour whether you’re exercising in the gym or in the ring. Boxing is not a martial art to be taken lightly, despite its popularity in many gyms. You must dedicate yourself to manage the tough workout routines in order to reap the full fitness benefits of this type of training.

You can approach training in a variety of ways here. One of the most common methods is to use a punching bag, which you may do at home or at the gym. Punching bags, whether a speed bag or a heavy bag, are widely used. For example, a heavy bag program can be used as a varied cardiovascular workout, while speed bags can help with stamina and reflexes.

You can concentrate on improving your technique or do interval training with the punching bags. This will aid in the development of the explosive power and strength that boxers require to win a fight. Furthermore, boxing training will aid in the development of core strength and muscle tone. Rotation is essential for a good punch. The more you practice throwing a punch correctly, the more your core muscles will be used properly, and you will see a difference in no time.

Make a Commitment to a Discipline

Consider taking up one or more of the aforementioned martial arts if you want to get in a decent cardio and aerobic workout that will help you get stronger and build muscle mass and stamina. 

Martial arts can surely add variety to your usual workout regimen. Whatever discipline you choose, as long as you put in the effort, you should see an increase in your general health.