Ideally you would start around 5. Failing that, the best time to start is whatever age you are now. Never too late


> Ideally you would start around 5. Modern sports science tells us no. 5 is too young. At that age, kids should be developing a "physical vocabulary" by participating in a variety of sports. Specialized training in whatever target sport should start later, maybe 10 or 12.


I agree but couldn’t it be beneficial for kids that young to train martial arts with less frequency or intensity or as part of trying out different sports? I believe there is science backing that martial arts training helps kids develop self-control & focus which seem developmentally appropriate in elementary-aged kids. Especially for those that may struggle in those areas.


Maybe but from what I've read they're better off doing gymnastics and other more general sports.


In judo 4 is our starting age


Sure, you *can* start kids in judo very young. The question is whether you should. If the goal is for the kid to just have fun, sure. If the goal is to produce a peak athlete, they should be getting a more well rounded athletic education in the early years.


I feel given their short attention span spreading it out like that just waters down what they’ll remember and apply naturally. I do however think training at the most 2 at a time can be effective but ultimately martial arts and sports are different there are a lot of things in all art forms you can do in practice and training but aren’t approved for use in tournaments which is a game based on the martial art itself. My daughters personally start boxing fundamentals as soon as they can walk 4 they start judo with others because realistically in a self defense situation striking requires power and women generally aren’t up to par power wise. Judo focuses physics momentum and motion a small woman with good timing and technique could easily and effortlessly sweep the foot of a man 3 times their size the odds of winning a striking match with said man are much much less likely. So I do agree having a broader skillset is beneficial but any more than 2 maybe 3 you’re overfilling and losing information. And if your goal is to be good in a specific sport version for example sport judo introducing them to wrestling and bjj at the same time will cause them to take on and learn the bad habits they have that don’t mix well with judo. For example my teaching them to box taught them to naturally bounce dance so to speak on their movement this is and habit for sport judo great For self defense judo but not great for sport where they are focused on the movement of the feet instead of the distracting strikes mind you my response is based on martial arts in general because the op question didn’t detail and form of sport martial arts but martial arts in generally which would overall be more self defense oriented. Training things like soccer and tennis can improve hand eye coordination but to be that time would be better spent creating natural muscle memory for their skillset.


You're missing the point. The intent is not to get a 5 year old to learn a bunch of specific stuff. The intent is to train them for overall athletic ability and coordination. Old style thinking is if you want a top tier athlete in sport X, you start intensively training them in X at a young age and grind that out until they are peak competitors in their late teens or whenever. Newer thinking is more general athleticism and then specific skills training later. The buzzword I was trying to remember earlier is "physical literacy". If you google that you'll find some reading if you're interested.


I get what you’re saying I just feel that would create more bad habits that would be harder to break as they got older.


What bad habits are you talking about? Do you think doing somersaults in a gymnastic class then playing some tag then going swimming, for example, would build bad habits related to judo?


I don’t really consider any of them sports or athletic education so to speak I swim not at all in a sports concept and why do gymnastics for somersaults when that’s how we teach the 4/5 year olds how to do rollouts as it is and then progress to yoga ball rollouts and again tags not really a sport it’s just s kids game we actually play tag with with kids we play judo tag if they get touched they are frozen until someone throws them with the throw of the day you said athletic education none of that would really fall on that category to me basic tumbling and games kids already do on a regular basis for fun I guess my point is if they are already doing those things my kids for example play tag all day long always jumping flipping and rolling on trampolines and swimming nearly every weekend in the summer why should they not at those ages also focus on a martial art as well?


If your kids are doing a variety of physical activity and judo is just one part of it then you are doing much the same thing. I was just confused about your reference to bad habits.


I didn't say that ideally they should start training exclusively and competitively at 5. Martial arts can be part of a child's physical vocabulary, and the is no reason it should not be. My own children are doing dance, gymnastics, swimming, and TKD. I said 5 because before that they are not really ready for the structure of martial arts classes. Most children simply won't get much of of it before that.


We’re on the same page in general.


I know people who started at his 30s or even more. They learnt the moves and the other stuff.


Females as well?


Of course


I know a woman that went to thailand when she was 39 or something. Never trained anything but marathon running. She became a champ and have like 40-50 fights. You got time


That’s actually very nice to hear! I’m in my 20s and I feel like it’s already too late for me to compete


Also is it possible to self learn using youtube?


You can't learn martial arts by watching things. You can try but registering for a gym is way more beneficial.


I would not recomend it. If you want to learn it properly, you shold go to classes.


No, you can’t learn to fight without a partner to physically practice with and an instructor to properly guide you


The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago, the second best time is today.


The best time is at age 5. The next best time is now. This is true for everyone. You can't learn it alone through youtube. It can aid you once you have developed the body awareness and basics to implement what you watch but those basics can't really be self-taught.


Just start dude


To be a high level UFC fighter, pretty young As a hobbiest; whenever


You'd be surprised that my gym has alot of people in their 40s even a woman in their late 50s and she's very physically active too! I highly recommend that you join a gym there's many people there who could give you tips and stuff from their experience Goodluck!


That depends on your aspiration and objective? To be a top level mma fighter? No younger than 12. To be one of the best mma fighters in the world? No younger than 8 in at least a grappling or striking style. To be an Olympic/World class Judoka? Ideally around 7. But can be as old as 9. Olympic boxer? You can get away with as late as 15. But ideally around 12. Top level Pro boxer? 12, ideally 8. Pro competitive but not top level in most styles? Mid twenties. Amateur competitve? Any time up to your mid 30s. Hobbyist? Whenever the fuck you want. Outliers and exceptions will always exist. The best time is now.


The best time to plant a tree, is 20 years ago. The second best time, is now.


Start as soon as you are able. I originally started karate when I was 12, but took close to a 25-year hiatus after a few years of training. Started back up last year (I’m in my late 30s at this point), and while I do regret taking the time away, I am thoroughly enjoying training again. It can be tough, but it’s worth it. Just go do it 😁


To what goal? That's the first question you have to ask yourself and upon the answer to that depend all other answers. Self learning is possible, but limited. In current age if you really don't have access to anyone you can setup online 1 on 1 coaching to correct some issues or even online classes where teacher can look and see online, but it still is far cry from live teacher. In my classes there are couple people who started online due to covid and where lockdowns lifted they tried "real classes" - even they say that real ones are far superior to 1 on 1 online coaching even with same exact coach!


Start now, go to a gym. Self-learning in most cases doesn't reap good results. Cheers


Best time to start is yesterday. Second best time is today. I started at 27 and I'm still training 6 years later. I work weird shift hours so I go whenever I can but train bits by myself at home. Definitely find a class and join.


It's not really possible to self teach, but if you get a partner you can fuck around with some stuff and it's better than nothing I guess. Starting at age 27 is definitely late, you're unlikely to become a UFC champ or a judo Olympian or whatever, but you probably already knew that. It takes time to develop real competency at martial arts, otherwise everyone would do it. 2-3 years is enough time to get some of the basics of grappling or striking down.


They are not going to the Olympics starting Judo at 27. They'll have done insanely, uncharacteristically, well to get their black belt before they're 30. By the time they have the knowledge and skill to even stand up to non Olympic level pros, they'll be mid 30s. If you're not doing Judo by your 10th birthday, you aren't going to the Olympics. You can maybe get away with starting as late as 13 if you're some sort of phenom. *maybe*. MMA is a bit more forgiving. These days you won't reach the top of the promotions unless you started young but history, including very recent history, is filled with guys starting training in their mid to late 20s and getting a shot at promotions like PFL, Cage Warriors and even prelims on the UFC.


I don't like to speak about impossibilities, but you're right, they're not going to the Olympics.


What are your goals?


I started when I was 42, too old to get the flexibility needed. My knees are shot now, so start as young as possible.


I think there can be an argument that if you want to be purely a hobbyist the best age to start is 25 for striking arts. Strikes to the head is much more dangerous while your brain is still developing. Around age 25 your brain becomes mature. I think it’s a good age to start. That’s not to say someone should wait until 25 if they’re younger, but if you’re already 25+ it’s a good angle to look at.


I started boxing at 27 and won my first golden gloves title at 30. My 45 year old self (having started BJJ at 37) would absolutely demolish my younger self in a real fight. Never too late to start - and always room for improvement. Fitness is like a lot of things…use it or lose it.


Its never to late to learn martial arts. Btw what is your goal tho, if its fitness and athleticism/physique you can do that from youtube. But if you goal is to actually learn to fight for combat sports, self defense or any other reason you have to go to the gym and train. You cannot learn to fight without fighting. And there is no better place to fight than a supervised place like Gym. Live Sparring, Pressure Testing and Resistance Training is very important if you actually wanna be able to apply those techniques if you actually end up in a real fight or any self defense situation which god forbid always try to avoid whatever the scenario maybe. Avoiding a fight is winning a fight.


The best age to start is whatever age you get an interest in it. Hurry up and start because once you get decent at it you’ll always wish you started earlier. As far as being self-taught, do NOT do this. Find an instructor who can actually correct all the small little mistakes you do that you’ll never be able to correct yourself. Also you can’t spar yourself, and sparring is important. Good luck and welcome to the community!


Best time to start is however old you are now...it's not easy but in my opinion unlike other sports fighting is ingrained in us so it's something you can surprisingly jump into and stick with easier than say... Suddenly learning hockey 27 and up. We evolved to fight. Like if you're fourty and have to fight or run for your life you might come out on top.. now if you have to do a spinning slam dunk for your life suddenly at that age? Good luck. this is why people feel good training it's meant to be with us humans. Just do it. it won't be easy but it's not something to overthink or go in with failure in mind. https://youtu.be/Q8lmHJzEmBA


If your hoping to become a professional your probably too old. I'd say these days 15-17 is likely the oldest you could start and hope to make it to the UFC or another league. As for youtube, no not really. You'll pick up mostly bad habits, things your doing wrong w/o realizing won't get correct. YT is a great tool to introduce theory and things you weren't aware of but you need to find a gym and learn from someone. Now if you plan on being like 99% of Martial Artists in the West and want to be a hobbyist then you can never be to old to start and now is the best time to start.


depends how badly you want it my dude. it's rumored that sonny liston was born prior to the great war, which would have made him 34 instead of the officially recorded 17. shit some Dominicans want MLB pay so bad they get in with lying about age and do pretty well. i don't like when people say set your expectations low so you don't get disappointed, i see it as a loser mentality. the odds of my grandfather making it out of enemy lines after 120 men he was with were dead in ww2 and coming back leading to my eventual birth was probably in terms of math damn low. the chances of a british patrol finding him injured, bleeding out after this journey and helping him survive were just as low. even if you play football from age 9 every day through high school your NFL chances are slim, and when you get to the NFL your chances of holding a super bowl trophy are even lower, but you still wake up every fucking day and push like you're going to hold it in your hands. there's some qbs that if they were really logical could say yeah im not the next tom brady, and it manifest them into even more of a loser. when you say fuck that logic shit, at least then you can have the mindset of a champion and are then a champion in your own right. there's no way you can look at amputees and shit going for their dreams with the mindset of champions and tell yourself "im too fat, old, or lazy" without manifesting a loser spirit within. Ronda Rousey went from youth olympian to homeless, and had she let that bad mental space take hold all her skill and training would have flatlined. it's all about building the spirit of a champion and warrior even if the rest of the world doesn't acknowledge it, thats what martial arts is imo. [if you aint walking thru life with this head space, tf you living for?](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlD9JYP8u5E)


The answer is almost always now. If you have the time, money, and no medical impediments; then there is no reason not to start now.


It is never too late, you should however do at least 3 classes per week in my opinion - it is not possible to self learn unless you already have experience, you can pick up a few tricks, but will not be proficient in sparring or in real fights - from my experience


Best time to start: As soon as possible Can you “teach yourself”: absolutely not. Maybe you’ll have an idea for the basics, but that’s about it


Your current age. Yes, it's a good idea. Some MA is better than no MA. Though you may want to discuss payment options if you can't attend class regularly. Maybe 2-3 years...what? That's not a complete thought. MA always makes sense to learn. It's fun, and it gets you out of the house, and around people that share a common interest. If you have some experience, learning from YouTube can have some value. But with no in person training, video learning is just dancing.


Start as soon as you can. And I'd strongly recommend against teaching yourself. Check out some gyms/dojos in your area and get a trial class


Between 7-13


You should introduce your kid to as many physical activities and sports as possible starting well before age 5, and it's great to have martial arts in the mix. At puberty kids get everything reset, it's a roll of the dice on everything, physical attributes, abilities, interests, and talent. For kids that specialized from, say, 3 to 12 and were really good at their thing, sometimes puberty takes away their edge and then they are no longer the best, or even very good any more, and for some kids it's a highly traumatizing and demoralizing life event. It's even worse when the sport was also one of the parent's sports and there's tiger-parenting involved, that shit ruins lives. Anyways, the best time to start martial arts is when an interest is shown, no matter the age. BJJ is the best.


I boxed from 7-22 until I shattered my hand on a road rage guy who went after my mom then I picked up judo at 27 when I started my 4 year old daughter in judo I’m now 35 I test for my shodan a month before I turn 36 would have been sooner but judo is very strict on time in grades and promotion points for example I need 60 points to test for shodan each class is only worth .1 and service points can I not make up 20% of your points so 48’points I have to make up from doing clinics and competing in tournaments. It’s the biggest downfall of modern judo is it puts too much weight on competing and not enough on education. I believe I only get 1 point for each Kata certification and there’s only 8 of them


Don't try to teach yourself from Youtube. Nothing can replace a qualified instructor, and you'll teach yourself bad habits if you try. ​ Otherwise though.. The best time to start is when you're a kid, and the second best time is right now.


Considering you're not even thinking about making a career out of it, the best moment is as soon as possible. Unless you can travel in time, in which case I really beg you, teach me how to. ​ EDIT: Nope, not a good idea to self teach from videos, videos are supposed to be complementary, not to replace real training with a teacher that can correct your mistakes.


In my opinion, fighters that take it seriously only have about 12 years before they start to get worse so i think that all the people that start really young will also finish very young


Whenever you're ready to start it. If you're asking about becoming a professional fighter or something -- the younger the better, to maximize your years available to compete. If you're just trying to learn and better yourself -- whenever you're ready to walk in and start. Even 2-3 years is going to be better for you than 0 years, whether for self defense, sport, or just improving yourself.


27 is a great age to start I know many who started when they were older and had no issue learning all the techniques and even got better faster than many younger people who started training, and self training online is not a good idea without any fighting experience or prior training at all


It's never too late to start, but self learning is a big no no


I feel like ideal age is a misnomer, like ideally you're born in Dagestan and wrestle your way out of the womb. You can't exactly go baçk and start when your young but you can start now as long as your below like 70 (even then there are 70 year old bjj black belts). If you wanna start martial arts or any hobby just do it, it's usually pretty welcoming and you don't need to be a UFC champion to have fun


Now. Whatever age you are is the right one.


Better late than never, but 5-7 is great


I heard 6 months into your 6th year