What Is the Best Martial Art?

This is the great question upon which the UFC was founded back in 1993.  The UFC set out to finally settle the age old debate, and invited martial artists from every discipline to showcase their skills and prove their superiority.  To the shock of much of the martial arts world, a little known style, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, developed by a little known family from Brazil, The Gracie Family, rose far above the rest that night.  The superiority of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu was demonstrated to the world at UFC 1, and for a while it seemed it would stay that way.  Then came the wrestlers, whose explosive and powerful style proved to be a worthy match for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.  Since these single style days the sport has undergone an incredibly rapid evolution giving rise to a new, loosely defined term "mixed martial arts".  Through the UFC's quest to crown a single style as superior a completely new martial art has evolved.  The question of "What is the best martial art?" is no longer a relevant one, unless we are to begin classifying "mixed martial arts" as a discipline unto itself.  Otherwise, it is time that we put this outdated question to rest, and simply recognize that no traditional or modern martial art is superior in its own right, but rather it is the seamless combination and mastery of all martial arts together that is best. The 4 main ranges of hand-to-hand combat are kicking range, punching range, clinch range, and ground range. Muay Thai has been proven to be effective in the kicking, punching, and clinch ranges. Wrestling is the accepted methodology for the clinch range. And Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is the dominant ground art for submissions. While different martial arts have contrasting strengths and weaknesses, the most important factor is the knowledge of how to use all of them seamlessly. Ultimately, the best martial art is the one that gets the job done for a given situation.

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