5 of the Best Martial Arts Books That Should Be on Your Reading List

A good teacher, constant practice, and the opportunity to train with other practitioners are just some of the essentials in any martial art journey. While reading alone may not be the best way to learn what you need, there are martial arts books that provide a lot of great insights that will inspire you to stay on the path. And here are just some of them.

1. Angry White Pyjamas: A Scrawny Oxford Poet Takes Lessons From The Tokyo Riot Police by Robert Twigger
Anyone who has never done any martial art or think he or she is too unfit to even try it will find this book an interesting read. It tells the story of how Twigger joined the Tokyo Riot Police training with only a little martial art experience. This book provides a glimpse into Japanese martial arts and the brutal training regimen the Tokyo riot police followed during that time.

2. Living the Martial Way: A Manual for the Way a Modern Warrior Should Think by Forrest E. Morgan
Not everyone who practices a martial art is a true martial artist in the real sense of the word. In this book, retired Air Force Major Forrest Morgan shares how a Japanese warrior’s mindset applies not only on martial art training but rather more of a way of life.

3. Tao of Jeet Kune Do by Bruce Lee
The Tao of Jeet Kune Do is a compilation of Bruce Lee’s writings. It provides detailed explanation of the art of jeet kune do that Bruce Lee founded. This book is a good read not just for jeet kune do practitioners but for all martial artists in general. It carries a lot of wisdom and insights from one of the greatest martial artists of all time.

4. The Art of Peace by Morihei Ueshiba
The Art of Peace is a collection of the teachings and writings of Morihei Ueshiba — the founder of the Japanese martial art Aikido. For Ueshiba, Aikido is the Art of Peace. This book takes a look into the martial art and shares timeless lessons on the way of the warrior that is anchored on compassion, courage, wisdom, and love of nature.

5. The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi
Miyamoto Musashi is a renowned samurai and that has remained undefeated in many duels and fights. His The Book of Five Rings is one of the timeless martial arts books worth reading by practitioners and non-practitioners alike. It provides insights into the way of the warrior.