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After having completed my weightloss and managed to maintain it for 6 months, I have decided I need a new challenge: martial arts.  Several years ago, I took judo for about 8-10 months, but I remember very little except really cool hip throws.  So I would like to start fresh with a new style.  Preferably something more aggressive and sparring-based than I remember (dimly) from judo being. (Before anyone gets mad, this is not an attack on judo.  I'm just looking for something with more punching, kicking, and other stress relieving activities).

Anyway, I was wondering what styles the calorie-count crew practice, why they practice those styles, what suggestions people may have, and how I can best exercise and satisfy my inherent guy desire to hit things really, really hard.  Muay Thai has been suggested to me, as has Tae Kwon Do.

Plus, if anyone knows any studios in the DC-Metro area, close to a metro station, that would be awesome.
12 Replies (last)
I took Tae Kwon Do many years ago and it definitely meets your requirement of punching and kicking.  My daughter took Hapkido and it was very similar to Tae Kwan Do in many ways but also included the throws that I associate more with Judo.
I took Tang Soo Do for ten years, it was awesome! Lots of punches and kicks, alright... and I know very few throws. ^^ Tae Kwon Do is also supposed to be good.
I did Muay Thai for a nearly 3 years back home and it was the most physically demanding thing I have ever undertaken. From a health and fitness standpoint it is excellent for cardio and conditioning with a very strong focus on core training.
Tae Kwan Do is a safe bet.  But the instructor(s) and the school are more important than the particular style.  I looked in the yellow pages for something near the Metro (I live in PG County).  Most of the schools just had phone and address listings and none of them looked to be near any Metro stop.  I haven't been involved in karate for over 10 years so I can't really recommend any specific schools. My recommendation is that you look under Martial Arts in the yellow pages and try to identify a couple of schools that you think you could get to.  Then go and watch some classes to see if they look like what you are interested in.
I found Karate to be more suitable for my size (6', 200 pounds) as it has less jumping and high kicks than Tae Kwan Do does.  There are several different "styles" to choose from.
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There are two types of tae kwon do. ITF, which is a more traditional type, and WTF which is the more sports orientated one that you see in the olympics. Personally I prefer ITF as in my experience its more diciplined and complete with regards to overall training of your body. Thats not to say WTF isn't any good, its just a different take on the same style. Both would give you a decent workout.
It's fairly common in my area of Southern California, but do they have any martial arts studios in DC where you can, say sign up for a month or on a trial basis? 

As the previous posts state, there is a lot of kicking and punching involved in Tae Kwon Do (TKD) . . . my husband prefered WTF, and I liked ITF . . .  Other forms of martial arts have various focuses, so perhaps, if you try out several studios and find one that suits you best, that may be the route to go? 

My husband also liked Muay Thai and Savante - but bear in mind that if you like to hit really, really hard -  particularly while you're sparring - expect to get it back in return :p

Good luck!
I just started Jui Jitsue and it's great!
I do TKD- it's a lot of things put together, and it includes kicks and punches, which makes me feel more balanced. Also, a lot of the stuff is really practical- don't get me wrong, weapons and things are amazing to learn, but not too much help in reality. There's lots of different things to learn and do, and it's some good exercise as well; if you can jump and kick, it's totally worth it.

I'm glad you posted this thread... I was wanting to ask the same question!

My neighbor does Muay Thai and loves every aspect of it, from the physical conditioning to the self-control, etc...

It is all very fascinating to me. When I have more discretionary income, I'd love to learn one of these disciplines discussed...

One differentiation my neighbor mentioned about Muay Thai: It uses elbows and knees in addition to hands and feet...


Good luck and be sure to keep us updated!

Alright, it took me a couple months, but I finally found a studio and started last night.  The style is Jow Ga kung fu, website available here:  Seriously though, I was getting showed up by 12 year olds the whole time.  It was awesome :)  Anyone else practice a kung fu style?  I think I'll work on the step form today during my usual lunch workout.  I'm sure it'll confuse the hell out of my coworkers down in the gym.  Thanks for the advice and the insight!
I took American Kenpo Karate for a year and it's basically four limbed boxing with Karate forms thrown in that qualify it as a Karate style.  No real grappling though, I don't know if you're looking for that.
12 Replies