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95 of the Most Inspiring Martial Arts Quotes  

95 of the Most Inspiring Martial Arts Quotes  

Martial Arts practitioners understand that the mind and the body are equally important to their skillful development. They know that consistent training, dedication, and self-discipline are the keys to successful living, both on and off the mat. This deep understanding has been passed down through the ages and added to by modern martial arts masters.

While we are not all practitioners of the Martial Arts, we can all learn a great deal from the accumulated wisdom of these great masters.

Here are 95 of the most enlightening Martial Arts quotes

  1. “Heroism is endurance for one moment more.”  —George F. Kennan
  2. “Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough, we must do.” —Bruce Lee
  3. “The green reed which bends in the wind is stronger than the mighty oak which breaks in a storm.” —Aikido saying
  4. “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” —Bruce Lee
  5. “The ultimate aim of martial arts is not having to use them.” —Miyamoto Musashi
  6. “How many things apparently impossible have nevertheless been performed by resolute men who had no alternative but death.” —Napolean
  7. “Appear weak when you are strong, and strong when you are weak.” —Sun Tzu
  8. “Force has no place where there is need of skill.” —Herodotus
  9. “If you’re going through hell, keep going!” —Winston Churchill
  10. “Think like a man of action, act like a man of thought.” —Henri-Louis Bergson
  11. “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” —Sun Tzu
  12. “Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they’ve got a second.” —William James
  13. “He who conquers others has force. He who conquers himself is strong.” —Lao Tzu
  14. “The warrior guided by the spirit serves humanity, the warrior without, serves the ego.” —Soke Behzad Ahmadi
  15. “Protecting yourself is self-defense. Protecting others is warriorship.” —Bohdi Sanders
  16. “Your technique means nothing if you’re not using your talents for the betterment of humanity.” —Gene Dunn
  17. “The best fighter is never angry.” —Lao Tzu
  18. “The essence of warrior traits are demonstrated by: integrity with self, and honesty with others.” —Soke behzad Ahmadi
  19. “Martial arts is not about fighting; it’s about building character.” —Bo Bennett
  20. “The Chinese words ‘kung fu’ translate more or less as ‘a man hard at work over a long time’. If you want to unlock the full power of kung fu, it is not going to be easy: you are going to have to work, you are going to have to sacrifice and you are going to have to suffer – over a long time.” —Master Iain Armstrong
  21. “To achieve anything we must grind, but to enjoy anything we must flow.” —Chris Matakas
  22. “Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.” —Bruce Lee
  23. “It’s what you don’t see that can take you out.” —B. Davis Kroon
  24. “Your anger is your First Enemy.” —Mohamed Othman
  25. “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.” —Aristotle
  26. “Ever tried? Ever failed? No matter! Try again. Fail again. Fail better!” —Masaaki Hatsumi
  27. “There is no losing in jiu jitsu. You either win or you learn.” —Carlos Gracie, Sr.
  28. “Fear and guilt can also destroy you like an enemy. The more you resist the more they persist. Like in martial arts, do not resist them, observe your opponent’s strength and use it to your benefit to win over them.” —Raju Ramanathan
  29. “The true work of the martial arts is progress, not perfection.” —Gene Dunn
  30. “Martial Arts does not teach you how to fight, it teaches you why not to.” —Lakshya Bharadwaj
  31. “True mastery, it turns out, is not found in accumulating each and every tool under the sun. True mastery is learning that there are really only a handful of tools, and it is the proper application with correct timing and setting that makes them so useful.” —Chris Matakas
  32. “To gain mastery you must unite the qualities of spirit, strength, technique and the ability to take the initiative.” —Sadami Yamada
  33. “On the path of the budo one does not strive for victory over an opponent. One strive to avoid defeat by one’s own self.” —Akira Toriyama
  34. “Anyone can be tough for a season. It takes a special kind of human to rise to life’s challenges for a lifetime.” —Chris Matakas
  35. “A threat should never be spoken, your enemy should not be told of your intentions. Either take decisive action or refrain from it, but never threaten.” —Soke behzad Ahmadi
  36. “Whatever is going on inside your head has everything to do with how well you end up performing.” —D.C. Gonzalez
  37. “Only hardness or only softness creates an inability to deal effectively with the fluctuations of life.” —Seikichi Toguchi
  38. “A karate practitioner should possess two things: wicked hands, and Buddha’s heart”  —Soke behzad Ahmadi
  39. “I can think of no more worthwhile aim than pursuing mastery in this craft while transcending one’s own limitations.” —Chris Matakas
  40. “To achieve what others won’t, you have to do what others don’t.”— Lazar Angelov
  41. “He who would accomplish little must sacrifice little; he who would accomplish much must sacrifice much.” —James Allen
  42. “The ultimate aim of Karate lies not in victory or defeat but in the perfection of the character of its participants.” —Gichin Funakoshi
  43. “That race you feel you are a part of is happening only in your mind.” —Ryron Gracie
  44. “If you are ready to die, then you are ready to live.” —Rickson Gracie
  45. “Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.” —Dalai Lama
  46. “Judo helps us to understand that worry is a waste of energy.” —Jigoro Kano
  47. “We must not learn to try harder. The key is to learn how not to try in the first place.” —Chris Matakas
  48. “Martial arts is like a mirror, in which you look at yourself before you wash your face in the morning. You see yourself, simply, the way that you are.” —Jiddu Krishnnamurti
  49. “It’s hard to fight an enemy who has outposts in your head.” —Sally Kempton
  50. “Judo is the way to the most effective use of both physical and spiritual strength.” —Jigoro Kano
  51. “Treat everyone with love and respect because they are your brother or your sister.” —Ryron Gracie
  52. “Practice until you get tired….then practice some more.” —Norman Harris
  53. “The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a man’s determination.” —Tommy Lasorda
  54. “All the arts we practice are apprenticeship. The big art is our life.” —M.C. Richards
  55. “Martial Arts is a vehicle for developing your human potential.” —Joe Rogan
  56. “Pain is weakness leaving the body.” —Unknown
  57. “One of the aims of Budo is the suppression of fears.” —Christian Tissier
  58. “The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” —Sun Tzu
  59. “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” —Mark Twain
  60. “Truth is not what you want it to be; it is what it is, and you must bend to its power or live a lie.” —Miyamoto Musashi
  61. “Masters of the martial arts believe that a strong body and mind go together: you can’t improve one without working on the other.” —Laura Scandiffio
  62. “The very essence of martial arts is the thirst for knowledge and the truth about ourselves.” —Frank Shamrock
  63. “Silence is a source of great strength.” —Lao Tzu
  64. “What defines us is how well we rise after falling.” —Conor McGregor
  65. “Opportunities multiply as they are seized.” —Sun Tzu
  66. “There is no comfort in the growth zone and no growth in the comfort zone” —Unknown
  67. “Life is growth. If we stop growing, both technically and spiritually, we might as well be dead.” —Morihei Ueshiba
  68. “One of the most fascinating lessons I’ve absorbed about life is that the struggle is good.” —Joe Rogan
  69. “Heaven is right where you are standing, and that is the place to train.” —Morihei Ueshiba
  70. “The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus.” —Bruce Lee
  71. “Try to find the path of least resistance and use it without harming others.” —Steven Seagal
  72. “A brave man, a real fighter is not measured by how many times he falls, but how many times he stands up.” —Rickson Gracie
  73. “All my life, following the warrior’s code has taken me to places I was afraid to go. But always when I got there I was glad I made the journey.” —Frank Shamrock
  74. “I am constantly discovering, expanding, finding the cause of my ignorance, in martial art and especially in life.” —Bruce Lee
  75. “Win or lose you will never regret working hard, making sacrifices, being disciplined or focusing too much.” —John Smith
  76. “If you fail to prepare, you’re prepared to fail.” —Mark Spitz
  77. “Cleanse your body and soul, removing malice, selfishness and desire.” —Morihei Ueshiba
  78. “When I started training martial arts, I learned about respect.” —Anderson Silva
  79. “Do not look upon this world with fear and loathing. Bravely face whatever the gods offer.” —Morihei Ueshiba
  80. “I practice martial arts not to win over other people but to win over my own heart.” —Tony Jaa
  81. “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” —William Arthur Ward
  82. “Everyone must choose one of two pains: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret.” —Jim Rohn
  83. “All the principles of heaven and earth are living inside you. Life itself is truth, and this will never change. Everything in heaven and earth breathes. Breath is the thread that ties creation together.” —Morihei Ueshiba
  84. “Your spirit is the true shield.” —Morihei Ueshiba
  85. The only way to prove that you’re a good sport is to lose.” —Ernie Banks
  86. “It’s not big things that create change; it’s the hundreds, thousands, or millions of little things practiced daily.”   —Adam Williss
  87. “If you cannot be a poet, be the poem.” —David Carradine
  88. “A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials.” —Confucius
  89. “Patience is more important, and more effective, than courage.” —Antonio Diaz
  90. “As martial arts practitioners, we are not the type of people who allow life to happen to us. We are the author of our own lives.” —Jay Haynes
  91. “The first priority to the ninja is to win without fighting.” —Masaaki Hatsumi
  92. “Without self-discipline, success is impossible, period.” —Lou Holtz
  93. “According to all the laws of aerodynamics the bumble-bee should not fly, but the bumble-bee does not know this and so flies anyway.” —Kung-fu principle
  94. “Whether it is a big ship or small ship, the same size hole placed correctly in the hull can sink it.” —Ed Parker
  95. “The hardest fight comes from the opponent within.” —Garry Wasson
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See also: Chuck Norris Quotes and for fun be sure to see our Steven Seagal Quotes too!

Video: Martial Arts Inspiration

As the guy in the movie says, “Be Phenomenal, or be Forgotten!”

This short clip is incredibly inspiring!

Related: Mr. Miyagi’s Best Quotes

Use these Martial Arts Quotes to give you more determination this week

These inspirational Martial Arts quotes teach us all that discipline, hard work, patience, and persistence are the qualities that lead to living well. They each contain the accumulated wisdom of centuries of self-discipline and self-awareness. Use these quotes as inspiration to master yourself, so that you can inspire others.