Traditional Eastern martial arts was extremely popular and influential, with most, if not all, martial artists knowing and studying the iconic Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, and Jet Li. However, many people have doubted the effectiveness of traditional martial arts for a long time due to some movements being overly flashy. People had then gravitated towards boxing, kickboxing, and wrestling because of their practicality and effectiveness, especially with the rise in popularity of MMA.
But as time passed, we're now seeing some of the greatest MMA fighters being inspired by various martial arts disciplines, such as Tony Ferguson with his Wing Chun background, and fighters like Lyoto Machida and Stephen Thompson applying karate stance and kicks into their fights.
So, does it come down to which martial arts is more effective, or simply which fighter is using it and how skilled they are in it? I started with Muay Thai and used to be very biased against other martial arts disciplines. As I gained more experience and knowledge as a martial artist, I have begun to realize that all martial arts are effective and can work.
When I traveled to Taiwan, I was pleasantly surprised when sparring a taller opponent who had a long background in Kung Fu and Wing Chun. He was a former professional MMA and Muay Thai champion and has since been trying to teach others the usefulness of incorporating these disciplines into your striking and ground game. To watch the full breakdown of the sparring session, check it out here: