Can I Teach Myself Martial Arts? Yes you can. But in all likelihood, the end result will be a car crash of bad habits and misconceptions. So it really is essential to seek out tuition and guidance from a teacher. So, no you cannot. Martial arts are a practical skill learnt though hard work, meticulous attention to detail and endless repetition. Learning any given art requires feedback from experienced practitioners. So trying to imitate what you see on a DVD, website, YouTube video or book just isn't going to cut it. You need experienced training partners. It is possible to use these resources as learning aids. However they must be aids and not your sole source of tuition. Learning martial arts properly requires access to a teacher. And for the purposes of this thread, teacher means someone with far greater experience, knowledge and ability than yourself in your chosen art. So lets consider the pros and cons of self-teaching. Pros: Total freedom to train as and when you like. Total freedom to train in anything you like. You can train even if you don't have access to a teacher, club or sparring partner. Cons: Dangerous mistakes go unchecked and uncorrected. Bad habits become ingrained. The student will move onto more complex training before they are ready and neglect the basics. The student is vulnerable to developing a poor understanding of both simple and complex concepts and principals. The student develops a false sense of confidence. Without proper guidance, there is a greater risk student may injure themselves or others. The student may become untrainable at other gyms or clubs. So what is the alternative if there is no club or teacher near you? Work on general fitness. It may seem like a bit of a cop-out. But it really is the best option. Martial arts generally require their practitioners to be fit and healthy. You do not need to be fit and healthy to begin training. But it's a good place to start. So work on flexibility, cardio and strength. And remember not to neglect functional fitness. There's no point in being able to lift twice your body weight if you can't put that strength to work once you start moving around. It's also a good idea to look at your diet and nutrition. Ask yourself "could this be better"? Make small incremental changes to your lifestyle in the direction of better all round health and fitness.