Best Martial Arts For Big Guys

People often tend to think that bigger guys have everything figured out. That is far from true. Regardless of what a person’s size, weight, or body type is, we all need to ask questions before doing something. This could actually be especially true for bigger guys, and on that note, let’s take a look at the best martial art for big guys.

The best martial arts for big guys, in my experience, would be either Judo, Wrestling, or Boxing. Bigger people have a definite advantage in grappling and throwing focused martial arts. A bigger size can also give you an advantage in Boxing.

That is just a short paragraph for the readers that are in a rush. In this article, we will take an in-depth look at exactly why we chose these three martial arts, and we will also discuss a lot more. So, keep reading. Remember, when we say “big guys,” we mean size, muscle mass, and weight.

The 3 Best Martial Arts For Big Guys

As I mentioned above, when we are talking about big guys in this article, we are talking about strong people and people who have extra weight on them. Also, guys such as big-boned and/or muscular. Anyway, here are our top three favorite martial arts for big guys.

  • Judo
  • Wrestling
  • Boxing

If one or two of those choices might seem a little strange to you, don’t worry. We are going to discuss why we chose those three in a little bit more detail. Without coming across as being arrogant, I just want you to remember that those three choices come from experience and from being in the martial arts industry for as many years as I have been. Basically, I have seen it all.

We will give you a little introduction to each martial art, and then we will talk about why each martial art is best for big guys. So, if you are not interested in learning about each of them, then you can just scan the page until you find the question of why XX is good for big guys.


Judo is a modern style of martial art. Jigoro Kano formed this Japanese martial art in 1882. It is regarded as a combat sport and is even part of the Olympics.

The art of Judo is not just physical. When Jigoro developed Judo, he did it as mental, physical, and moral teaching. All-round, it helps you see things differently. You are taught mental traits that help you in day to day life. You are taught how to act within good morals. Finally, you are trained in combat.

Olympic weight classes for Judo

The weight classes have changed over the years. In the early days, there were only 3. Those were:

  • Lightweight: -68 kg
  • Middleweight: 68 to 80 kg
  • Heavyweight: 80 kg and above

As time went on, different weight classes were added to make matchups more fair and exciting. We also saw the introduction of female weight classes. Below is a table with the latest weight classes. These weight classes can change at any time.

Weight classMaleFemale
Extra Lightweight-60 kg-48 kg
Half Lightweight60 to 66 kg48 to 52 kg
Lightweight66 to 73 kg52 to 57 kg
Half Middleweight73 to 81 kg57 to 63 kg
Middleweight81 to 90 kg63 to 70 kg
Half heavyweight90 to 100kg70 to 78 kg
HeavyweightOver 100 kgOver 78 kg

Why Is Judo Good For Big Guys?

Now we have reached the fun part. Why exactly is judo so good for big people? Well, let’s take a quick look.

Judo has many disciplines, but one thing that it does focus on is grappling, hooking, and throwing your opponent. Being a big guy, you obviously have a lot of muscle mass or just body mass in general, giving you an advantage in a few areas.

Being a big guy will not only make it harder for your opponent to grapple you and establish hooks on you, but it will also make it harder for them to throw you.

With all of that being said, you being the bigger person probably means that you are stronger regardless of whether your weight is just muscle mass or belly fat. So, you might find it easier to slam and throw your opponent.


Not many people really know that wrestling is actually a martial art. We tend to associate wrestling with the WWE and things like that, but there are many people who use wrestling as a martial art. There are also many people who use wrestling as one of their disciplines in the MMA and UFC.

Wrestling has two main focus points, and that is grappling and strike focused combat. This means that there is a wide array of disciplines available for you to focus on. However, you will learn all of them.

Why Is Wrestling Good For Big Guys?

The answer to this question is pretty similar to the answer that we gave you for judo. You see, whether you are learning traditional wrestling or catch wrestling, you will be able to choose a style and discipline that is best suited to you and your body type.

If you are bigger in terms of height, you will be able to use the training focused on striking combat. If you are just bigger in general, you will focus on the grappling, throw, pinning, and slamming disciplines of wrestling.


I think that boxing needs no introduction. If you have watched boxing before, I am sure that you have noticed boxers come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and weights. In fact, in this article, we will share with you the weight divisions for amateur boxing just to give you an idea of where you would fit in if you know what your weight is.

Why Is Boxing Good For Big Guys?

Because of the reach advantage that you get from being taller, boxing is the perfect martial art or combat sport for you to do. The longer arms will help you in your training and sparring and help you if you decide that you want to start having a few fights in the ring.

One important thing that I would like to note is that just because you are taller and have that reach advantage, it does not mean that a short person can’t get in. Oftentimes, you will find that shorter opponents have more striking power than their taller counterparts. Let’s not forget what Smoking Joe Frazier once did to the great Muhammad Ali even though Fraser was a lot shorter.

And on that note, let us not forget what Mike Tyson, who, at 1.78m, was shorter than most of his opponents, was able to do to those opponents. In general, taller people seem to always have an advantage in the ring.

Amateur Boxing Weight Divisions

When you go to boxing classes, you will train with people of all sizes and weights, but the minute you start stepping into the ring to Spar, you will normally Spar with people in your weight division. Sparring doesn’t necessarily mean that you will get ready for a fight; it just means that you will put your skills to the test.

So, here is a table of all the weight classes within amateur boxing.

Weight DivisionMenWomenJuniors
Super heavyweightUnlimited
Heavyweight91 kg (200.6 lb)UnlimitedUnlimited
Light heavyweight81 kg (178.6 lb)81 kg (178.6 lb)80 kg (176.4 lb)
Middleweight75 kg (165.3 lb)75 kg (165.3 lb)74 kg (163.1 lb)
Light middleweight69 kg (152.1 lb)70 kg (154.3 lb)
Welterweight69 kg (152.1 lb)64 kg (141.1 lb)66 kg (145.5 lb)
Light welterweight64 kg (141.1 lb)63 kg (138.9 lb)
Lightweight60 kg (132.3 lb)60 kg (132.3 lb)60 kg (132.3 lb)
Featherweight57 kg (125.7 lb)57 kg (125.7 lb)
Bantamweight56 kg (123.5 lb)54 kg (119.0 lb)54 kg (119.0 lb)
Light bantamweight52 kg (114.6 lb)
Flyweight52 kg (114.6 lb)51 kg (112.4 lb)50 kg (110.2 lb)
Light flyweight49 kg (108.0 lb)48 kg (105.8 lb)48 kg (105.8 lb)
Pinweight46 kg (101.4 lb)

Will Martial Arts Make You Strong?

I know that this article is starting to get a little bit long, but hey, my goal is to try and answer all of your questions without wasting your time. If you had to leave this article with more questions than when you came into it, then I would feel that I would have actually wasted your time.

Martial arts on its own will not make you strong. In fact, the only thing that will make you strong is by training your muscles, and this you can do at the gym. What martial arts will do is, it will help you focus your core and give you the discipline you need to build muscle and get stronger efficiently.

All you have to do is intertwine your gym routines or your weight lifting routines with your martial arts schedule. If you do that then I can almost guarantee that you will be well on your way to not only building muscle but also doing it efficiently and in the way that it actually lasts.


That brings us to the end of this article and to be honest when I started writing it I was just going to give you a short simple answer to a short simple question but martial arts is something that I’m passionate about. I kind of want other people to be passionate about it as well. So, as I normally do, I tried to answer every single aspect of this question that I possibly could.

Other articles in this series:

Best martial art for a small person.
Best martial art for tall people.
Best martial art for skinny people.
Best martial art for overweight people.
Best martial art for bodyguards.
Best martial art for women to learn.
Best combination of martial arts for MMA.

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