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Top 50 interesting facts about Martial Arts

Following is our collection of incredible Martial Arts fact check articles and charts explaining insights about Martial Arts. Sometimes weird, funny, and true Martial Arts facts.

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What is Martial Arts?
  1. Keanu Reeves trained for four months in karate for The Matrix. Later, he learned over 200 martial arts moves for Matrix Reloaded. He also learned Judo and Jujitso for John Wick.

  2. A man attempted to kidnap a woman on the street. She escaped and ran into a nearby martial arts dojo for safety. The assaulter pursued her inside. Shortly after he was carried out on a stretcher and left in an ambulance.

  3. Jet Li turned down a role in The Matrix Reloaded because Hollywood producers wanted to record and copy all of his martial arts moves into a digital library, with all rights going to them.

  4. As a child, martial arts actor Jet Li was asked by Richard Nixon to be his personal bodyguard. Li replied, "I don't want to protect any individual. When I grow up, I want to defend my one billion Chinese countrymen!"

  5. Keanu Reeves trained for four months in karate for The Matrix. Later, he learned over 200 martial arts moves for Matrix Reloaded and also learned Judo and Jujitso for John Wick.

  6. Robert Downey Jr largely credits the martial art Wing Chun for helping to maintain his sobriety, as well as helping to keep him "grounded, well and focused".

  7. Steven Seagal Bragged to Gene LeBell that his Martial Arts Mastery was so Great, he couldn't be Choked-Out, Gene LeBell then proceeded to Choke-Out Steven Seagal until Seagal Pooped Himself

  8. Elvis was quite gifted in the martial arts. He reached the level of First Degree Black Belt and one of his instructors instructors was quoted saying “In martial arts, he wasn’t Elvis, The Entertainer. He was Elvis, The Black Belt, with 15 years’ experience”

  9. MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) was done at the ancient Olympics. It is called Pankration and is the only event that wasn't reinstated with the creation of the modern Olympics.

  10. Edith Garrud, a 20th century suffragette who knew Jujitsu and was one of the first female martial arts instructors in the West. She taught the "Suffragettes Self-Defence Club”, and was an instructor for “the Bodyguard” a 30-women unit that defended fugitive suffragettes and fought the police.

What are some fun facts about martial arts?

Filipino Martial Arts are considered the most advanced practical modern blade system in the world and are used by the U.S. Army, the Spetsnaz, and various branches of India's military

In Avatar: The Last Airbender, the bending styles for each element were influenced by a different Chinese martial art. For example, earthbenders use movements inspired by Hung Gar––chosen for its firmly rooted stances and powerful strikes as a representation of the solidity of earth.

Steven Seagal was given Serbian citizenship after starting a martial arts school in Belgrade and giving Aikido lessons to Serbian Special Forces.

One reason that you so often see people holding fans in ancient Japanese paintings/art is because the fan was a common self defense weapon. It had a metal rod inside, and there is an entire martial art dedicated to fighting with the fan.

The style of Kung Fu practiced by Bruce Lee, Wing Chun, was actually invented for women by a woman. It features a narrower stance than other martial arts, focuses on speed and agility instead of strength, and confrontations where the attacker is very close

Future John Wick director Chad Stahelski doubled for his friend Brandon Lee following Lee's death on the set of The Crow. The two had the same martial arts instructor, Dan Inosanto.

Transgender females can fight naturally-born women in mixed martial arts competitions

Kung fu can refer to any skill achieved through hard work and practice, not necessarily martial arts

As Catwoman in Batman Returns, Michelle Pfeiffer performed almost all of her own stunts including martial arts, using a bullwhip, and letting a live bird fly out of her mouth.

Brendan Hufford, founder of kids martial arts company OK Kimonos, once held a clothing drive for poor children in Brazil that raised $3,000 and 100 uniforms. He didn't donate any of the uniforms or money to the charity, but promoted his business as doing such.

Martial artist Yuki Nakai beat 2 fighters, twice his size, in a tournament after an illegal eye gouge left him blind in one eye. He developed complete blindness in one eye, yet kept it secret for years in order to protect the reputation of martial arts. - fact check

The urumi, a flexible whip sword no longer used in battle, but still practiced as an extremely dangerous martial art.

Jack Ma (founder of Alibaba) is so rich he made a martial arts film staring himself fighting Jet Li, Donnie Yen, Tony Jaa, Jason Statham, Manny Pacquiao, and many other legends.

That, after martial arts, parkour is booming amongst Iranian women, who are often seen practising various jumps and rolls while still wearing the mandatory hijab

Actor Steve McQueen was a highly trained martial arts expert, but refused to test for his belts in fear of being challenged publicly and sued if he opened a can of whoop ass on somebody

Japan is Experiencing a Ninja Shortage as Martial Arts Groups Struggle to Find Qualified Ninjas to Fill Tourist Demand for "Ninja Shows"

Before becoming a movie star, Bruce Lee was Hong Kong’s Cha Cha champion. Lee would trade dance lessons for martial arts lessons and his first job in the United States was as a ballroom dance instructor.

Tommy "Karate" Pitera. A hitman for the Bonanno crime family. He spent 27 months in Japan studying martial arts and weapons training along with further educating in human biology and dissection. Suspected on up to 60 murders, he often kept souvenirs from his victims.

Japanese Police Officers are highly trained in judo and fencing. Beer bellies are non-existent and they hold annual contests in martial arts.

During his childhood, Willie Nelson grew interested in martial arts. He ordered self-defense manuals on jujitsu and judo that he saw advertised in Batman and Superman comics. Nelson started to formally practice kung fu after he moved to Nashville, in the 1960s.

The 1st draft of Anchorman was about a planeload of news anchors who crash in the mountains... the men soon discovered the plane they collided with was carrying monkeys and martial arts gear, leading to a battle-to-the-death between cannibalistic anchors and star-throwing monkeys. - fact check

Bunnies & Burrows is a tabletop RPG in which the players assume the role of rabbits. It debuted less than two years after D&D. It is notable for not only being one of the first Tabletop RPGs, but also the first to have a detailed Martial Arts (called Bun Fu) and skill system.

Because its cost-to-gross ratio was so high, the martial arts kids movie '3 Ninjas' was technically the most profitable movie of 1992.

Glima, A scandinavian martial art similar to modern wrestling that was used by the vikings.

"Kung fu" is a Chinese term referring to any study, learning, or practice that requires patience, energy, and time to complete. In its original meaning, kung fu can refer to any discipline or skill achieved through hard work and practice, not necessarily martial arts.