Celebrities Who Practice Martial Arts | List of Famous People Who Do Martial Arts | Puncher Media (2023)

Celebrities are some of the most powerful influencers in our culture. Actors, musicians, models, and other media giants inspire their audiences and invoke change on both individual and cultural levels. They are trendsetters who are always one step ahead of the new what’s next and their endorsement of an activity can help skyrocket its popularity. This has been the case with martial arts over the last few years. While the UFC’s breakthrough into the mainstream has helped shake a stigma combat sports once had, celebrity participation in various forms of training has also helped bring martial arts to much larger audiences. Here are 10 celebrities who practice the martial arts:

1) Khloe Kardashian

🥊🥊🥊 West coast, tune in to E! at 9pm for a brand new #KUWTK!!

A post shared by Khloé (@khloekardashian) on

The martial arts can be a great tool to learn the important life principles such as discipline, respect, and honor. They can also help you get a great beach bod. Khloe Kardashian, being ever concerned with the latter, uses boxing to stay in shape. The sweet science has been featured on an episode of Keeping up with the Kardashians, and is often the subject of many of Khloe’s social media posts. The Reality TV star has gone through a noticeable physical transformation during her family’s time in the spotlight and boxing has undoubtedly played a major role in helping her get fit.

2) Wiz Khalifa

Fuccin right it’s what i live. 😂✈™

A post shared by Wiz Khalifa (@wizkhalifa) on

Rapper Wiz Khalifa broke out in 2010 with his hit “Black and Yellow,” and has been a cultural icon since. While he’s known for his boundless drug use, wiry physique, and laid back attitude, the man is far from soft. Muay Thai and MMA training makes up a solid percentage of his free time and he even has videos of him sparring on his Instagram with Muay Thai boxing legend Saenchai. With Chuck Liddell making an appearance in the video for his song “Something New,” it is safe to say that Wiz is picking good friends if he’s looking to learn a thing or two about the martial arts.

3) Robert Downey Jr.

Kicking off the 1st issue of @GQStyle! Click my bio link to view inaugural cover.

A post shared by Robert Downey Jr. (@robertdowneyjr) on

(Video) 10 Popular Actors With Serious Martial Arts Skills In Real Life!

Before he was Iron Man and Sherlock Holmes, Robert Downey Jr. was a wild man. The stories of his debauchery were that of legend, but with a young family he needed some grounding. As he told Oprah on an episode of her show, that is exactly what Wing Chun did for the Hollywood star. Most known for being the base of martial arts folk hero Bruce Lee, Wing Chun is a form of Kung Fu which is not only offensive but involves meditative techniques. RDJ’s put some of the more aggressive maneuvers on display in the film Sherlock Holmes. He trained with famed practitioner Eric Oram for the role, having as many as 6 sessions in a single week. The traditional art has done RDJ well, keeping him clean and sober to star in record breaking blockbusters like The Avengers: Infinity War.

4) Jessica Alba

#imjustagirl @nodoubt y’all #kravmaga 💪👊 #kickass #fightlikeagirl

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While being a famously beautiful young actress must have its perks, it certainly comes with certain troubles. One of which is dealing with overly intrusive and obsessive fans. This is why Jessica Alba trains in Krav Maga. Most known for being the martial art of choice for the Israeli military, Krav Maga takes aggressive and practical techniques from several different fighting styles to make up one of the best martial arts for self-defense. It involves techniques which help in real life confrontations and is not limited to hand to hand combat. Alba also uses Krav Maga to stay in fighting shape for her roles, many of which are physically demanding.

5) Barack Obama

Celebrities Who Practice Martial Arts | List of Famous People Who Do Martial Arts | Puncher Media (1)

Former President Obama is given an honorary black belt in taekwondo by South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak.

Martial arts do more than keep you in shape and teach self-defense, they transcend cultural boundaries. There is no such thing as appropriation in the world of martial arts; each skill is made to be shared and no one is limited to specific means of protection. Barack Obama proved this to be true when he received an honorary black belt in Taekwondo from South Korean president Lee Myung-Bak on his trip to Seoul. Obama trained in Taekwondo and earned his green belt during his time as a junior senator in Illinois. While Obama and Myung-Bak may have needed interpreters in their discussions regarding North Korea, the language of Taekwondo was one they both understood and that undoubtedly helped them connect.

6) Tom Hardy

Celebrities Who Practice Martial Arts | List of Famous People Who Do Martial Arts | Puncher Media (2)

Tom Hardy with UFC fighter Cody Garbrandt

Bronson may have been Hollywood’s introduction to Tom Hardy as a physical specimen, but it seems as if his role in Warrior was Hardy’s introduction to the world of MMA. Since the film, Hardy has played many physically demanding parts like that of Bane in The Dark Knight Rises, or Max in Mad Max: Fury Road. It doesn’t appear that Hardy will stop doing this kind of work anytime soon, as his next role as Eddie Brock in the upcoming film Venom will surely be a physical one as well. Yet, Hardy must have picked up the MMA bug from professional fighters like Nate Marquardt and Yves Edwards whom he shared the set with while making Warrior, for his regiment for getting in shape now consists of training with Nathan Jones, another professional fighter.

7) Demi Lovato

Demi Lovato is another celebrity with a checkered past which has been well documented. Her new documentary Simply Complicated is a deep dive into the pop stars history, showing all the good, bad, and ugly. However, it seems as if brighter days lay ahead of Lovato and it is safe to say that martial arts have played a role in turning her life around. She has been seen training with the likes of Jay Glazer, professional MMA fighter Cung Le, and her ex-boyfriend and professional fighter Guilherme Vasconcelos. She has even gone so far as to share videos of her doing cryotherapy, the latest fad in MMA for recovery today. While Lovato has been seen training in multiple types of martial arts, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu appears to be a favorite. To make sure she never has to miss training she has taken her Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructor, Orlando Sanchez, on tours with her in the past. Her love for Jiu-Jitsu is comes as no surprise as it is one of the best martial arts for women. Royce Gracie taught us this when he came out on top in UFC 1, using technique rather than power to submit fighters who were twice or thrice his size.

8) Ed O’Neill

Ed O’Neill Rolling With Rorion Gracie from ROF Industries Inc on Vimeo.

While Al Bundy may have become one of America’s most lovable slobs on Married… With Children, Ed O’Neill, the actor who portrays him, is anything but. O’Neill is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt under the legendary Rorion Gracie, which is an incredibly impressive feat when given perspective. Promotions in rank are typically based off the discretion of the trainer in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. This means that a belt is an indication of where a trainer believes his pupil’s skills are, and thus, O’Neil’s black belt acts as a Gracie stamp of approval. Ed O’Neil has been practicing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for over 20 years and earned his black belt in 2007.

9) Henry Cavill

Becoming Superman is no small task. Sure, the Last Son of Krypton himself was born with his powers, but the actor who portrays him has a lot of work to do to get into super shape. That’s why Henry Cavill trains Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with some of the best practitioners in the world. Cavil’s Instagram is filled with photos of him rolling, including some of him training at the Renzo Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy and rolling with Roger Gracie himself. Who would have ever thought that a man of steel could get in shape using “the gentle art?”

10) Keanu Reeves

The fight scenes in the John Wick movies are different from those in most other action films. Keanu Reeves does much more grappling and close ranged combat than movies featuring other action heroes like Jackie Chan, Jet Li, or Jason Statham. That’s because most of the techniques seen in John Wick have practical applications, even if they are over exaggerated to appear flashy. Reeves’ training was unique for the film, mixing aspects of Jiu Jitsu, Judo, with tactical gun work. Reeves’ love for martial arts has been made clear by many of his fight fueled flicks like, Man of Tai Chi, The Matrix, and 47 Ronin. While Reeves has trained in many different martial arts for film, the notoriously private actor doesn’t flaunt any of his personal training on social media, making him all the more mysterious and all the more deadly.

There are a million reasons to participate in martial arts. Self-defense, self-confidence, physical fitness, and tradition are all things you can learn while practicing almost any martial art. They help us improve ourselves and teach valuable life lessons. Hopefully, the celebrities on this list inspire their fans to pick up a marital art. Who are some more celebrities whom trained in martial arts? Leave a comment below.

To learn more about the history and practice of martial arts check out the other articles in the Puncher “What is” series on Judo, Boxing, Karate, Taekwondo, Muay Thai, Sambo, MMA and more.

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  1. Celebrities Who Practice Martial Arts | List of Famous People Who Do Martial Arts | Puncher Media (12)

    Krav Maga In South Florida

    November 29, 2018 at 6:28 am

    KravMaga is an excellent and very functional martial arts system. It is generally used to military self-defense. If you want to join martial and learn KravMaga martial arts Contact us – 954.249.4998


    (Video) Top 10 Bollywood Actors Who Know Martial Arts new
  2. Celebrities Who Practice Martial Arts | List of Famous People Who Do Martial Arts | Puncher Media (13)

    Sarah Smith

    December 26, 2018 at 4:44 pm

    It’s really interesting that celebrities from Robert Downey Jr. to Barack Obama have trained in martial arts. Personally, I think it would be interesting to see the different styles of martial arts and how they work with and against one another. I wonder if there is something where martial arts celebrities fight against one another to show the different strengths of the different forms.


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Who is the most famous martial artist? ›

1. Bruce Lee. Bruce Lee is ranked first among the top 10 martial artists in the world in 2021. Lee Jun-fan (27 November 1940 - 20 July 1973) was a Chinese martial art performer, star, film maker, martial art teacher, and philosopher.

Who is the most famous martial arts actor? ›

Jackie Chan

He helped bring Asian martial arts to the Hollywood mainstream with his acrobatics and slapstick humour, but is also an exponent of breakneck-paced kung fu. Chan fuses hapkido, judo, wing chun, taekwondo and hei long in his own tight, choppy style.

Who is the top 5 martial artist in the world? ›

Here is the list of the top 10 martial artists in the world.
  • Bruce Lee. Bruce Lee is one of the most influential martial artists in the world. ...
  • Jackie Chan. ...
  • Vidyut Jammwal. ...
  • Jet Li. ...
  • Steven Seagal. ...
  • Wesley Snipes. ...
  • Jean Claude Van Damme. ...
  • Donnie Yen.

Who is the famous personalities in martial arts? ›

Bruce Lee, Most noted for career as an actor, however Lee was also a martial arts instructor, philosopher, film director, film producer, screenwriter, and founder of the Jeet Kune Do (JKD) martial arts movement. Jackie Chan, Most noted for his career as a martial arts actor.

Who is the No 1 martial artists in the world 2022? ›

1. Jackie Chan. The ace actor and one of the most famous cinematic personalities across the globe, Jackie Chan deserves the first spot in the list of the world's top 10 martial artists 2022.

Who is the best martial artist in India? ›

Vidyut Jammwal ranked among top 10 martial artists worldwide.

Who is the best fighter in the world? ›

Who are the greatest MMA fighters of all time?
  • Anderson Silva (34-11, 1 No Contest) UFC - Ultimate Fighting Championship. ...
  • Khabib Nurmagomedov (29-0) UFC - Ultimate Fighting Championship. ...
  • Daniel Cormier (22-3, 1 No Contest) ...
  • Stipe Miocic (20-4) ...
  • Fedor Emelianenko (40-6, 1 No Contest) ...
  • Amanda Nunes (21-5) ...
  • Jose Aldo (31-7)
8 Jul 2022

Who is the best fighter of all time? ›

1. Muhammad Ali. The Greatest was not only one of the best heavyweights of all time, he was also one of the most colorful. He won the gold medal at the 1960 Olympics and went on to become the first boxer to win the heavyweight title three times.

Who was the fastest martial artist? ›

Martial arts grand master holds the Guinness World Record for the fastest punch - performing 352 in a minute. Jayanth Reddy from Hyderabad, India has been practicing martial arts for the past 40 years and is an 8th Dan (degree) black belt Taekwondo Grand Master.

Who is the richest martial arts actor? ›

Sammo Hung Net Worth
Net Worth:$40 Million
Date of Birth:Jan 7, 1952 (70 years old)
Height:5 ft 6 in (1.7 m)
Profession:Actor, Film Director, Film Producer, Screenwriter, Stunt Coordinator, Martial Artist
1 more row

Who is the king of karate? ›

SpongeBob is officially crowned "King of Karate," and he sits on his throne and requests Sandy to sit beside him in a lounge chair.

Who is the best fighter in China? ›

Former UFC standout and current ONE Championship lightweight Zhang Lipeng. Winner of The Ultimate Fighter: China, Zhang 'The Warrior' Lipeng has been around the game for quite some time now. Having already fought 45 times in his career thus far, the 31-year old former UFC prospect is still very much active today.

Who is the father of martial arts? ›

Bruce Lee

How many martial arts are there in the world? ›

There are more than 170 martial arts. You will have heard of some, such as karate, Jiu-Jitsu, and Taekwondo, while others are rare or less popular. Martial arts come from different regions around the world, with many originating from China, Japan, and Korea.

How can I learn martial arts? ›

Learn Martial Arts: 3 Basic Kicks for Beginners - YouTube

What is the best type of martial arts? ›

These five martial arts styles are ideal for teaching you what you need to know if you ever find yourself in a dangerous situation.
  • #1 BJJ for Self Defense. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, or BJJ, is great for self-defense because size doesn't matter. ...
  • #2 Muay Thai. ...
  • #3 Filipino Martial Arts. ...
  • #4 Krav Maga. ...
  • #5 for Self Defense MMA.
23 Jul 2019

What are the seven most popular types of martial arts? ›

The Seven Most Popular Types of Martial Arts
  • Karate – Japan. Arguably one of the most well-known out of all of the martial arts, it features some impressive movements of powerful punches, kicks and blocks. ...
  • Kung Fu – China. ...
  • Judo – Japan. ...
  • Muay Thai – Thailand. ...
  • Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu – Brazil. ...
  • Krav Maga – Israel. ...
  • Aikido – Japan.
17 Aug 2022

What is the most popular martial art in America? ›

Boxing, Karate, Judo, Fencing, and Taekwondo are most popular martial arts among young and adult Americans. The rising popularity can also be attributed to pop culture and media. America's introduction to Bruce Lee in 1959 was one of the major factors that galvanized the popularity of the sport.

Who would win Bruce Lee or Mike Tyson? ›

Mike Tyson would win in a match against Bruce Lee. With not only his size behind him, Mike Tyson also has power and speed combined with experience in the ring that would advantage him greatly in a pure hypothetical fight against Bruce Lee.

Who would win Jackie Chan or Bruce Lee? ›

For all of Jackie Chan's skills, it's likely that Bruce Lee would still prevail in a one-on-one fight. After all, Lee has the advantage in real-life fighting experience.

Who is best fighter of all time? ›

1. Muhammad Ali. The Greatest was not only one of the best heavyweights of all time, he was also one of the most colorful. He won the gold medal at the 1960 Olympics and went on to become the first boxer to win the heavyweight title three times.

Who is the king of karate? ›

SpongeBob is officially crowned "King of Karate," and he sits on his throne and requests Sandy to sit beside him in a lounge chair.

Who would win in a fight Bruce Lee or Muhammad Ali? ›

Most experts say Ali would crush Lee. But in a street fight with no rules, where you're allowed to damage your opponent in any way you can? Lee could use his kicking and grappling skills to devastating effect. If he could keep Ali from reaching him with his hands, Lee would stand a chance.

How fast was Bruce Lee's hands? ›

Bruce Lee's famous 1-inch punch was the fastest of all his punches due to the short distance the punch had to travel. His 1-inch punch was clocked at an impressive 118mph or 190kph and capable of knocking a 200-pound or 90kg man back 16-feet or 5-meters.

Who would win in a fight Mike Tyson or Muhammad Ali? ›

While one punch can change everything, the better boxing fundamentals of Ali will be favoured in the contest. Planet Sport predicts that Ali would be the victor via a later round stoppage.

Is Batman stronger than Bruce Lee? ›

Batman utterly annihilates Bruce Lee since Batman is “peak human” (in actuality the feats he has are well beyond human) and therefore well beyond anything a 'real' human could ever hope to achieve.

Is Jackie Chan a black belt? ›

At the Peking Opera School, Jackie Chan trained martial arts and acrobatics for a decade. When he entered the film industry, he learned Hapkido and eventually attained his black belt. He is also known to have trained in other martial art forms such as Karate, Judo, TaeKwonDo, and Jeet Kun Do.

How old is Bruce Lee now? ›

Lee's body was returned to Seattle, where he was buried. His sudden death at the young age of 32 led to rumors and speculation about the cause of his demise. One theory held that Lee had been murdered by Chinese gangsters while another rumor circulated that the actor had been the victim of a curse.

Who is the No 1 fighter in the world? ›

UFC Men's Pound-for-Pound Rankings 2022
1Alexander Volkanovski25–1
2Israel Adesanya23–1
3Charles Oliveira33–8 (1 NC)
4Kamaru Usman20-2
11 more rows
13 Oct 2022

Who is the world best fighter 2022? ›

F-22 Raptor

The air superiority that F-22 offers to the United State Air Force are unmatched. Powered by two engines, the F-22 raptor is also termed the best fighter jet in the world in 2022 even at the most expensive price.

Who is the best martial artist in India? ›

Vidyut Jammwal ranked among top 10 martial artists worldwide.

What is a karate student called? ›

For instance, a Japanese can use the name 'gakusei' for a karate student. Generally speaking, you can call karate students by the word that translates directly into a student in your country.

Who is the father of karate? ›

The Father of Modern Karate. Funakoshi Gichin was born on Nov 10, 1868 in Yamakawa, Shuri, Okinawa Prefecture. He was of samurai lineage, from a family which in former times had been vassals of Ryukyu Dynasty nobles.


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