Physiological Characteristics of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Judo as Compared To Muay Thai

Morghan Jungman and Judy R. Wilson*

Physiological Characteristics of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Judo as Compared To Muay Thai.

An increase in the popularity of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) in recent years has raised the interest in issues related to training and fitness necessary for competition. Mixed martial arts include a variety of techniques typical of various combat sports which may include: boxing, wrestling, karate, judo, kickboxing, jiu jitsu. However, there are other martial arts styles that remain popular.
While martial arts involve fighting, the rules of how the opponents attack each other differ between the various styles. Our particular interest was whether or not there was also a difference in physical characteristics, such as strength, flexibility, agility and balance in those who competed (recreationally) in Muay Thai and those who competed in Judo and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Fighters do wear boxing gloves but can use several parts of their body for offensive and defensive purposes. From a physiological point of view, Muay Thai appears to be an intermittent, physically demanding sport, with short phases of maximal or supramaximal intensity
spaced by brief recoveries. A Muay Thai match lasts up to 5 rounds of 3 minutes and, as in most martial arts, contestants are weight-matched.

Those competing in MMA draw from a variety of other combat sports and martial arts. The various martial arts have some overlap, however, taken individually, each martial art has unique physical demands requiring training focused on the techniques and expectations inherent within it. The addition of females as participants as well as aerobic and anaerobic testing will greatly expand the knowledge of the physical demands of these sports.

Sport Exerc Med Open J. 2016; 2(1): 7-12. doi: 10.17140/SEMOJ-2-132