taekwondo vs jiu jitsu

Taekwondo vs Jiu Jitsu: Key Differences

When most people think of martial arts, the first things that come to mind are usually taekwondo vs jiu jitsu. They are both popular modern martial arts, and for good reason – they are both incredibly useful in defending oneself from attackers. But it is essential to keep in mind that both have vital differences that make them unique. Knowing each one’s benefits and drawbacks can help you decide which martial art is right for you.

History of Taekwondo and Jiu-jitsu

Knowing the history of taekwondo and jiu-jitsu can give you a better understanding of the key differences between the two martial arts and how they are different in their techniques, philosophies, and even training methods. Taekwondo is a form of martial art that was established in Korea about two millennia ago. Over the course of several years, it has evolved into a well-liked sport on a worldwide scale. Taekwondo’s defining characteristic is that it is a kind of sparring in which participants use only their bare wrists and ankles to defend themselves against an opponent. This activity becomes a martial art when it is codified and systematized into techniques that can be performed in self-defense or in sports sparring.

Jiu-jitsu, on the other hand, is a form of martial arts that came from ancient Japan. Later on, it was brought to South America by a Japanese ambassador by the name of Mitsyuo Maeda, where it eventually evolved into the contemporary art of Brazilian jiu-jitsu. It was Maeda who was instrumental in spreading it around at the turn of the twentieth century. The participants in this combat sport are taught to use their entire body to defend themselves against an opponent. It focuses on grappling and submissions that includes using techniques like joint locks and throws to disable an attacker and defeat an opponent. In Brazilian jiu-jitsu, there is also a strong focus on ground fighting that allows a smaller and weaker person to defeat a larger and stronger opponent.

Training Methods

When it comes to training methods, there are stark differences between taekwondo vs jiu jitsu. It is important to understand these differences as it will help you to decide which discipline is more suited to your needs and interests. Taekwondo training methods focus on the development of techniques that are effective for self-defense, sports competition, and physical fitness. The majority of taekwondo training takes place in a group class setting where students learn drills and forms and spar with one another. The purpose of training in this activity is to toughen the body through repeated practice of the many forms used for attacks and defenses. It takes three to five years for a student to achieve a black belt taekwondo.

Jiu-jitsu training methods, on the other hand, focus on live training (rolling) in order to develop a student’s ground fighting skills. Rolling is a type of sparring that is done with a partner where both people take turns trying to submit each other using different choke holds and joint locks. The goal is to force your opponent to ‘tap out’ or submit. Training in jiu-jitsu can be done both in a group class setting and through private lessons. It generally takes much longer to achieve a black belt jiu jitsu than it does in taekwondo — usually around ten to fifteen years.

Differences in Fighting Styles

One of the critical differences between taekwondo vs jiu jitsu is the focus on different fighting styles that are unique to each martial art. The emphasis placed on head-height kicks, leaping and spinning kicks, and quick kicking techniques are some of the defining characteristics of taekwondo. In point of fact, additional points are awarded in the sparring portion of World taekwondo competitions for strikes that include spinning kicks, kicks to the head, or both types of kicks. This focus on high kicks is due to the fact that taekwondo was developed in part as a way to allow smaller and weaker individuals to defend themselves against larger opponents by using speed, agility, and powerful kicking techniques to score points and disable an attacker.

However, in jiu-jitsu, students are taught methods such as escaping, evading, holding, choking, throwing, weaponry, hitting, kicking, rolling, and falling, as well as ground fighting (grappling). Jujitsu does not rely on strength but rather on balance, quickness, and leverage to accomplish its goals that were honed and perfected over hundreds of years of Samurai combat. The main objective of jiu-jitsu is to take an opponent down to the ground, immobilize them, and then force them to submit using a variety of chokes or joint locks. The jiu-jitsu fighter looks for opportunities to trip, sweep, or throw their opponents off balance and then take them to the ground where they can be controlled.

Competition Formats/Rules

The aim of taekwondo is to land as many kicks and blows on your opponent in the allowed target areas. A contest consists of three rounds, with two minutes each for a total time limit of nine minutes — but you can’t score points if they’re off-limitations. In this game, it is crucial that you keep your focus during all three rounds because bonus victory will be achieved by knockout or scoring more than one point per round; this means there are no disqualifications and no submissions. On the other hand, jiu-jitsu is a bit more complicated.

In a jiu-jitsu match, you must not talk to the ref during the game. The time limit for tying your belt is five seconds, and you cannot leave the mat unless it’s backed by at least one foot of space between yourself and any part of your body or corner where you are applying pressure. If you are using a gi, you can’t hold onto your opponent’s clothing for more than three seconds. There are also some other guidelines that will help make sure matches go smoothly, such as no slamming your opponent, pulling guard counts as a sweep, and no stalling unless the top position player is doing so.


If you are looking to study martial arts, it is important to understand the critical differences between taekwondo and jiu-jitsu. Both of these martial arts have characteristics that you should consider before making a decision about which one to pursue. Ultimately, the best way to decide which skill is right for you is to try them both out and see which one feels more comfortable and better suits your personal needs and goals. If you’re interested in trying out Jiu Jitsu, come see us for a free week and see if this fighting style peaks your interest.