September 4, 2022

How to Choose a Martial Art Based on Body Type

Have you ever been to a gym? If yes, try remembering your first day at a gym. You enter the gym and you feel the excitement rushing in your blood seeing people training. Apart from all the excitement, do you remember the suggestions the gym trainer gave you?

The trainer scans your body and, as per your body type, he/she suggests what to eat and the exercises you should do. Martial art is like working out at the gym.

Yes, choosing a specific martial art as per your body type speeds up the learning process. But there is no rule that a specific body is only eligible for specific martial arts. You can always train and prepare for any martial arts.

The first thing to do while choosing a martial art based on body type is to understand your body type. There are 3 types of body and each body type has its own characteristics. Figure out your body type. 

Once you understand your body type, it gets easier to choose martial arts training based on your body type. 

If you are specific about the martial art you want to learn and wondering if you have the perfect body type for the training. Here’s a breakdown on how to choose a Martial art based on body type. 

body types ectomorph mesomorph endomorph

Martial Arts Based on Body Type

By now you know that there are 3 types of human bodies. The names given to each body are Ectomorph, Endomorph, and Mesomorph. But there is one more body type, known as a Combination body type. This body shares the characteristics of two or more body types. But the cases are rare. 2 out 10 have the combination body type. 

Ectomorph Body Type 

Ectomorph bodies have thin and long body characteristics which make it one of the best body types for martial arts. Though a person with this body type finds it hard to gain muscles, it’s perfect for martial arts. 

Bruce Lee’s body is the best example of an Ectomorph body type. And you know how fast his punches were. The best thing about this body type is that it gives you the ability to learn many forms of martial arts in a short time. 

If you are a fan of UFC, you will notice most of the fighters have a lean and long body. They are quick in making moves and strikes. 

If you are lean and worrying because you can’t gain weight quicker. It’s time you look at the fitness world from a different angle. Being in the Ectomorph category your options are endless. Yes going to the gym and trying to gain muscles might take time and hard work. But if you are passionate about martial arts, you can learn any of them easily. 

Some popular martial arts that an Ectomorph body can choose are:

  • Wing Chun – Wing Chun is a hands and feet combat training. This martial art fits into the category of ectomorph body type because the training doesn’t involve much body use. It has a lot more to do with hands and feet training. 
  • Tai Chi – Tai Chi is another martial art that fits into the category of a slim body. This martial art focuses on a set of body movements. People with a thin body adapt to the movements quicker than those who have huge body structure.
  • Taekwondo  – This is also a traditional martial art that focuses on form and kata. Kata is an individual training exercise in martial arts. Taekwondo is 80% kicking and 20% other body movements. A person with low fat would be able to do lots of free speed kicking. 
  • Karate – Ectomorph body type people are hyperactive and karate has lots of fast moves. Fast moves and hyperactive is one of the best combinations in martial arts training.   
  • Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu – Jiu-Jitsu is one of the best self-defense martial arts training. It has lots of rolling on the ground. A person with Ectomorph body type can take the advantages of their slim body to make quick roll and ground moves. 

Being in the category of ectomorph body type doesn’t mean you cannot take part in other martial arts. Though the above mentioned martial arts are some of the most suitable forms for a lean body, you can still take part in other forms of martial arts. It’s all up to how hard you are willing to train. 

man praticing martial art outdoors

Mesomorph Body Type 

This body type has the best athletic body. A person with Mesomorph can join any martial arts training. Though this body is fit for all types of martial arts, it still needs proper training to master any form of martial arts. 

Mesomorph body is perfect for martial arts that have lots of grappling. The shorter bulkier muscles give them more control when working on the ground game. 

Another great quality of this body type is it gain muscles quicker and lose weight faster. The person with this body type doesn’t have to worry about what to eat. They can eat anything and still have a good physique.

Based on mesomorph body type, the best martial arts a person can learn are:

  • MMA – Mesomorph body type people have all the characteristics that an MMA fighter should have. Their muscles are not too muscular, average height and they have great control over their body. A person with this body type can learn MMA quicker than other body types. But they still need consistency and hardcore training. 
  • Brazillian Jiu-Jitsu – This is another great martial art that a mesomorph people can learn. Jiu-Jitsu has wrestling and close-quarter fighting components which is a perfect fit for the mesomorph body. 
  • Muay Thai – Muay Thai is not for everyone. A person has to have a good athletic body and should be very careful while training. This martial art is a combative art and if not taken proper care could cause serious injury. But a person with an athletic body can learn this art with ease. 
  • Judo – This martial art also needs an athletics body. A person with ectomorph and endomorph will find it hard to cope with this martial arts training. Judo has lots of throwing in the game and only an athletic body will be able to sustain the fight long enough. 
  • Jeet Kune Do – This is another combative art and is rigorous training. Apart from mesomorph, other body types will find it hard to train for Jeet Kune Do. 
  • Krav Maga – Though this martial art suits most of the body type but the training can be rigorous. But for the athletic body type, this martial art can be one of the best self-defense training. 
  • Tai Chi – A person with mesomorph can also learn Tai Chi for overall body movements. It’s a traditional martial art that focuses on movements. 
  • Taekwondo – Taekwondo is a martial art anyone can learn but it gives more advantages to athletics body type. 
  • Karate – Karate is another martial art anyone can learn but it still needs an athletics body to master it. 
  • Kenpo – Kenpo is a form of martial arts that focuses on Kata. Any person with average height and weight can learn. 
  • Aikido – This is yet another traditional martial art that focuses on forms and kata. A person with a mesomorph body type has more advantages than other body types. 
  • Wing Chun – Though Wing Chun is best for the ectomorph body type because it focuses on hand and foot combat. A person with a mesomorph body can also learn this martial art with ease.

Having a mesomorph type body doesn’t mean you are free from diets and training. Compared to other body types you have advantages when learning martial arts. But, you still need the same amount of training as other body types. 

Young woman in kimono practicing karate

Endomorph Body Type 

The Endomorph’s body has the slowest metabolism compared to ectomorph and mesomorph body types. The body is soft, curvy and has a round physique. It’s the exact opposite of the ectomorph body type. Ecomorph people have to work hard to gain weight while endomorphs have to work hard to lose weight. 

With proper body maintenance, a person with endomorphs can have the sexiest body, especially for women. What makes the body sexy? The Hip should be wider than the shoulder. The only problem is the body stores fats and gains weight fast. 

Don’t be sad if you have an endomorph body. Some of the sexiest and beautiful singers, actors and actresses on the silver screen are endomorphs. Having a pear-shaped physique doesn’t mean you cannot join any martial arts classes. In fact, if you work hard and maintain your body, you can be one of the best fighters. 

Before you plan to learn any form of martial arts make sure you don’t have too much weight. Endomorph body stores fats in the lower parts of the body. If you have excessive belly fats start jogging and exercising.

Being an endomorph, the best martial arts to start with are:

  • Tai Chi – Tai Chi is an overall body movement martial art training. A bulky body like an endomorph can benefit a lot with this training.  It not only helps in burning fat but also stretches your body. 
  • Taekwondo –  Taekwondo martial arts is pure leg training. Using your legs often will burn the lower body fats at double the rate. 
  • Kenpo and Aikido – This martial arts is an individual training exercise. Even with excessive fats, you can still learn the techniques but you will need to put in lots of hard work. 
  • Boxing and Wrestling – Boxing and wrestling is a form of martial arts that best fit for the heavier fighter. Endomorph is the best body type for such martial arts. 


The best body type is one that is willing to show up for each class and sweat it out, eat clean, get enough recovery sleep, and practice outside of class. Worrying about optimal bodies, beyond working to optimize your own, is a fool’s errand.

At the end of the day, it’s not about the type of body you have. It’s about how hard you train and how you follow martial arts. Anybody with any body types can master any form of martial arts with proper diet and training. The only question is, how much are you willing to sweat?

Eugene Hardy

Eugene is a professional Muay Thai fighter, with several years of experience. Also, a black belt holder. He actively participates in tournaments and provides training to his students. Eugene started this blog to share his experiences with Martial Arts.

View all posts by Eugene Hardy →

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