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Muay Thai Vs Ninjutsu: A Head-To-Head Comparison

muay thai vs ninjutsu comparison
muay thai vs ninjutsu

I have never been a fan of comparing a sport and a martial art based on stealth and deceptive moves with one goal – to accomplish the mission. Ninjutsu can also serve to defend you. It can help you survive in harsh surround, mask your real intentions and trick your opponent.

Muay Thai vs ninjutsu is a hard comparison. Thai boxing used to be a military martial art until the 20th century when it evolved into a sport and reached global popularity. On the other hand, ninjutsu has been the secret martial art of ninjas and samurai warriors in ancient Japan. They were trained in hand-to-hand and weapon combat, in every single surround.

I will try to compare these two. Can a Muay Thai warrior destroy the master of ninjutsu? What is the greatest advantage of the old Japanese over ancient Siamese martial art and vice versa? Please read on to get to know the details!

What Are The Basic Fighting Areas Of Ninjutsu?

Ninjutsu was the weapon of ancient samurai warriors for a reason. It focuses on impressive 18 martial arts, and hand-to-hand combat is only one area ninjas learn. A good ninja is skillful in weapon fighting, sneaking, throwing objects, pyrotechnics tricks (for example, vanishing in a cloud of smoke), disguise, impersonation, stealth, rope techniques, and much more.

A few centuries ago, it was a very great martial art to protect the homeland from invaders. Also, ninjas were sent on various missions. For example, the best of the best were given tasks to infiltrate behind the enemy lines and execute the target without raising the alarm or suspicion.

Unfortunately, the popularity of ninjutsu is vanishing today, as there are firearms. Shurikens, spears, sticks, or knives are not faster than a gun. Yet, ninja gets the advantage when it comes to sneaking, hiding, and surprising the opponent with a sudden attack.

Unfortunately, Muay Thai vs Ninjutsu comparison is only possible in one aspect of the game – Taijutsu or unarmed combat. This is not the era of ancient Thai boxing. It is a very popular, fast-growing sport nowadays. I will compare hand-to-hand combat and try to determine which martial art gives better results.

Muay Thai Vs Ninjutsu – Which Are The Greatest Stance Differences?

I have already described Muay Thai stance – hands high, weight shifted on the back foot, leading leg on the tips of the toes. Sometimes, masters of ninjutsu will not even hold guard, especially when you attack them. But let’s describe a technical, Taijutsu stance for beginners in the ancient Japanese samurai martial art.

If you’re a fan of Tekken, Raven is a real example of a good ninjutsu stance, suitable for all kinds of offensive and defensive attacks. If you prefer female fighters, check Master Raven. She’s got a few additional moves, but it’s the same fighting style.

As well as you can see, in Ninjutsu, the fighter is standing in a modified sideways stance. The leading hip is rotated towards the opponent, and the leading hand defends the stomach. Your rear hand and shoulders serve to prevent head strikes.

Ninjutsu stance is pretty much vulnerable to low kicks, calf strikes, and overhands. Yet, it offers the excellent ability of counters and dragging the fight to the ground. Muay Thai fighters should be fine as long as he keeps the fight on their feet, but there are no rules in the ancient martial art from Japan. It means groin strikes, headbutts, and nut shots are legal. Everything works when you’re trying to defend or eliminate/disable your target.

Which One Offers Better Strikes?

Well, Muay Thai fighters hit way harder, that’s for sure. Thai boxing is the science of eight limbs and it can help you neutralize the foe in the competition, under the specific ruleset. Ninjutsu is based on open palm strikes, punches, kicks, defensive maneuvers, and submissions on the ground.

I believe that Thai boxing combos make a greater amount of damage. Yet, one ninjutsu strike could hit your sweet spot and disable you. The problem is – weaker strikes don’t necessarily lead to more efficiency. A ninjutsu strike to the head is almost always followed by a takedown or an arm lock technique and dragging the bout to the ground.

There is one similarity between Muay Thai and Ninjutsu – there’s not much circling, both martial arts are mostly based around the central line.

Thai boxing low kick is, for example, way stronger than a ninjutsu low kick because the leg generates the greater speed on the impact and it’s harder to block it. But again, ninjas might target your nuts, which could lead to an instant stoppage.

Which One Offers Trickier Attacks?

Undoubtedly, ninjutsu. You’ll rarely see Muay Thai fighters masking their attacks. They rather trade barbs with their enemies toe-to-toe. Ninjutsu warrior is extremely patient, he’s usually waiting for your mistake and counter.

While Muay Thai is more based on attack and pressure, ancient Japanese martial art is all about counters and the tricky use of the opponent’s power against him. Also, ninjutsu fighters will mostly feint before attempting any type of attack.

Muay Thai vs ninjutsu is kinda hard to compare in this aspect of the game because ninjas use calisthenics and surround to their advantage too. For example, they could climb walls, fences, and even use various objects for self-defense. One point for ancient Japanese art.

Interesting fact, a ninjutsu guy, Steve “Ninja Cop” Jennum, won UFC 3 tournament by destroying Harold Howard via submission (punches). Back then, there were only two rules in the UFC – no biting and eye-gouging. Japanese art was a great choice. Jennum was too tricky for the Canadian Karate/BJJ black belt. Howard ended up on his back and lost the fight after a barrage of fists from the mount.

Muay Thai Vs Ninjutsu – Which One Is Better For Self-Defense?

Well, I have already explained to you that Muay Thai works well unless the fight gets dragged to the ground. But Ninjutsu is known for dirty techniques and strikes, designed to disable or stop the opponent by any means necessary.

There are no rules in the street, and I have never heard of ninjutsu competitions. What do you think, why? Because this martial art has some similarities to Krav Maga. You can even eliminate your target via a silent attack from behind.

Also, a great master of ninjutsu will be able to fire back everywhere, even when attacked with a deadly weapon. Japanese martial art offers more options. Even when you’re dragged to the ground, you will know to slip out of the submission attempt and break the opponent’s arm or leg.

Muay Thai fighter would probably dominate Ninjutsu expert in a toe-to-toe fight without a weapon, but as soon as a ninja gets a hold of a stick or a shuriken or any metal object, it’d be the end of the road for Thai boxer.

Both martial arts can work against multiple attackers. Thai boxing strikes are stronger, but ninjutsu’s striking is way dirtier. There is no referee stoppage. Muay Thai vs ninjutsu – sorry, but one point for the ancient Japanese martial art. Ninja knows to fight with weapons and to use surround to his advantage. Thai boxers are experts in fighting inside the ring.

I will tell you a real-life story. I have a friend who knew nothing about martial arts, and she was a victim of the former boyfriend’s violence. She didn’t want to continue the relationship with him because of the abuse. She moved to another city, bought karambit and shurikens, and started learning ninjutsu.

Shuriken (hidden hand blade)

After six months, she returned to her city of origin, wearing weapons in the bag. As soon as the dangerous 260-pound guy attacked her next time, she pulled out her blade and threw a shuriken at the attacker. Luckily for him, she didn’t harm him badly, but he was shocked and left her alone.

This story proves that there are no weight classes in ninjutsu – the girl weighed only 140 lbs, but the dangerous guy had no chance against karambit and shurikens. In the best-case scenario, she could’ve been an intermediate!

Which Is The Ultimate Advantage Of Ninjutsu Over Muay Thai?

Ground fighting, hand locks, and all kinds of submissions. Even UFC rules prohibit breaking toes or fingers. Yet, in ninjutsu, there are only three rules – defend, survive, complete the mission.

Maybe a ninjutsu fighter could have a hard time in the ring, even when the fight ends up on the ground. But how about fighting on the open field, in the city, on the stairs, or in the classroom? Muay Thai works in a small space thanks to knees and elbows. Yet, a ninja could throw mud to your face and unload a barrage of bullets to end the fight.


Muay Thai and ninjutsu are two very much different martial arts. Thai boxing is a sport, while the Japanese fighting style focuses on stealth, sudden attacks, hitting weak spots, and finishing by any means necessary.

I believe Thai boxing would dominate inside the ring, but ninjutsu fighters are masters of calisthenics, weapon fighting, and using surround to their advantage. Thai boxer hits harder, but ninja could finish his foe in a shorter period. Please tell me, Muay Thai vs ninjutsu, which one is your favorite and why?

Last Updated on May 21, 2022 by Deni

Picture of Deni


Hi, I started training Muay Thai back in 2016 and fell in love with it. So I decided to create this blog in the pursuit of this passion and share my experience with you.

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