Why You Cannot Learn All Martial Arts | A Real Example

martial arts

Today, there’s a variety of martial arts one can learn. Some people are struggling with a single one. Yet, some find success with a few. However, as time went by, people have noticed they couldn’t learn all techniques and keep the old ones. As a result, learning all martial arts is impossible, and here’s why.

You cannot learn all martial arts because becoming proficient in many martial arts is unrealistic. Because you’ll have to practice and master dozens of distinct movements and techniques, a lifetime positively isn’t enough. That said, conquering a few martial arts is plausible. 

Today, elite fighters use various fighting styles to surprise their opponents. Thus they dominate their competition. In the UFC, diverse fighters use Jeet Kune Do techniques combined with their primary martial art. Hence they’re capable of mostly winning fights. 

Next, we’ll dive into the reasons why you can’t learn all martial arts and what you can do about it. Additionally, we’ll discuss a real example from a genuine martial artist to share his experiences. 

Before jumping in, I sped up my progress by training at home. As a result, I needed to know how to do so. For that reason, I’ve written a complete guide to training martial arts at home, and I recommend you to check it out. 

Can you learn all martial arts?

Although it’s tempting, learning more than a single fighting style at first is unwise. Yet, most MMA elite fighters incorporate various techniques from more than a single martial art. Because of that, you may think that learning all of them is possible. Well, think again. 

Learning all martial arts is impossible because a lifetime isn’t enough for such a task. As a result, there isn’t enough time to find masters to teach you every single martial art. For instance, every region has its fighting style. Thus achieving such a trait is unrealistic. 

As much as I would like to encourage you to get on such a task, there isn’t much I can say to motivate you. You won’t succeed in learning and becoming decent in half of all existent martial arts

Furthermore, you’ll have to nurture every fighting style you learn- so you won’t forget it. At some point, it will be too much to handle. As such, you shouldn’t even try to learn more than five in a lifetime. 

Some people dedicate their lives to mastering a single martial art. That’s right, one. Do you think you can become decent in hundreds of them? No way. Most people will have trouble learning two simultaneously. I wrote an article on whether you should train in two fighting styles. I recommend you to read it. 

The example I promised you in the title comes right now. I’ve followed a martial arts YouTube channel for quite a lengthy period. As such, I’ve learned plenty from this guy’s content, and I want you to meet him. He’s the one with the most experience and martial arts knowledge I’ve ever encountered. 

I understood from him that learning all martial arts is indeed impossible. As such, I recommend you to watch the following one-hour video. Enough praise; let’s dive in.

If you’re up for the task, I’m sure you’ll reach incredible feats. You may get to know distinct masters and learn different approaches and mindsets. All of that is possible and highly desirable. However, you won’t absorb all of the knowledge these arts offer, and you shouldn’t strive to do so. 

How many martial arts can you learn?

Some are willing to dedicate their lives to learning the arts of fighting. They’re on a pursuit to study all existent martial arts worldwide. Yet, in the last section, we saw it’s not possible to achieve. Well, how many can you learn in a lifetime? 

As a whole, completely mastering a single martial art will require more than a lifetime. Because conquering a technique may take years, doing so for the entire martial art; is deemed impossible. Because of that, many dedicate their lives to master a fighting style.

That said, one can learn numerous martial arts. Today, MMA elite fighters become proficient in more than a single fighting style because that’s the way of being unexpected. Furthermore, they expand their skillsets and therefore have a better chance of winning. 

A Judo man who becomes proficient in Muay-Thai will be able to grapple and strike powerfully. Each martial art lacks some practical technique. Hence completing it with another style only makes sense. However, accomplishing such a feat is highly desirable and demanding. 

Training in martial arts has been shown to alter experiences of control and vulnerability, self-esteem, self-concept, fitness, confidence, and relaxation. As a result, some researchers characterize martial arts practice as a form of self-help.

(Columbus & Rice, 1998)

If you pursue to learn as many martial arts as possible, I admire you. You’ll enjoy the process of learning a single fighting style. You’ll absorb the culture and the history- train and learn techniques.

When training in numerous martial arts, you’ll meet people you would never have met. Thus it would be an incredible experience. Furthermore, you’ll learn from a dedicated master in the martial art you’ll know. You’ll broaden your knowledge, and therefore become a different person. 

Should you learn two martial arts at the same time?

As much as the temptation influences us, learning more than a single fighting style at a time; is unwise. You won’t focus on what matters, and therefore you’ll have a demanding time learning the fundamentals of both martial arts

You should not learn two martial arts simultaneously because you’ll divide your focus. As a result, you’ll progress slower overall. Furthermore, you won’t notice double the benefits since you won’t focus on a single martial art. Thus it’s not worth it. 

Image by Paul Browning from Pixabay

That said, many people become proficient in more than two fighting styles. Although that seems like it’s positive, it isn’t. Let me explain. 

Choosing a primary style will assist you in focusing your attention on a limited amount of movements. Thus specifically- becoming proficient in them will become more manageable. Eventually, you’ll progress faster and enjoy the process even more. 

If you’re not enjoying your martial arts journey, you’re doing it incorrectly. 

Learning to fight doesn’t have to be a burden on your schedule. Instead, you can learn to fight while having fun and bettering your physical shape. I believe that’s a win-win situation. 

I guarantee that every elite UFC fighter has their primary martial art, and they don’t make another one their primary. Instead, they’re practicing some techniques from the second martial art. As such, they’re capable of surprising and dominating their opponents. 

What’s the quickest martial art to learn?

Today, many people are looking to learn self-defense. However, they desire to do so quickly. Although it’s challenging, it’s possible. Next, we’ll discuss some fighting styles that you can learn fast. 

Krav Maga is a martial art that requires the least time to learn because it originated from soldiers. The Israeli military desired to train their operators to know self-defense quickly. As a result, they used Krav Maga to accomplish such a feat. 

Every soldier- in the Israeli military goes through seven months of Krav Maga training. Consequently, each knows to defend himself and his teammates if one needs to use physical force. 

That said, they reached such a feat in less than a year, which is incredibly short. I recommend you to watch the following video demonstrating the capabilities Krav Maga has to offer. 

Overall, I recommend learning Krav Maga. For me, it changed my perspective on fighting and self-defense. I was able to understand the fundamentals to a deeper level. Protecting myself using the movements I learned was not as hard as I imagined. 

I did Krav Maga for 14 months with weekly training sessions. As a result, I’m currently comfortable using physical force and the techniques I learned. That has helped tremendously with self-confidence and self-capabilities. I recommend you practice it, as you’ll become proficient in it quickly. 


Eventually, you cannot learn all martial arts in a lifetime. It’s impossible because there are too many styles to count on a calculator. As a result, you won’t be able to travel worldwide and look for a specific master. 

Although it’s impossible, the people who pursue it are incredible. They’re ambitious, and they want to eat the entire cake. Although that’s impossible- a long journey is ahead of you- so you better head out. 

If you’re looking to learn a complete martial art style, I recommend MMA or Jeet Kune Do. They include a variety of techniques designed to enforce you as a complete fighter. As such, learning them; is wise. 


I've served in the military as a special forces operator for 4-years. In that period, I've trained in many martial arts, including karate, MMA, BJJ, boxing, and even Krav Maga. I want to share my passion with you, so here it is!

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