Billionaire and Tesla founder Elon Musk has challenged Russian president Vladimir Putin to single combat, which has sparked interest in their respective martial arts skills.

Musk’s challenge came after YouTuber-turned-boxer Jake Paul shared a mock boxing poster of himself and the Russian president last week.

So, do Musk and Putin have martial arts training and who would actually win if there was a fight.


In a series of Twitter posts shared on Monday (March 14th), entrepreneur Elon Musk challenged Vladimir Putin to single combat with the aim to end the conflict in Ukraine.

“I hereby challenge Vladimir Putin to single combat,” the Tesla founder tweeted. “Stakes are Ukraine.”

In a follow-up tweet, Musk wrote in Russian: “Do you agree to this fight?” He tagged the Kremlin’s official Twitter handle in the post.

As reported by The Independent, one user suggested Putin would win the fight to which Musk replied, in a since-deleted post: “If Putin could so easily humiliate the West, he would accept the challenge. But he will not.

Photo by Patrick Pleul – Pool/Getty Images


Musk and Putin both have martial arts training. As per previous reports, Musk trained in Brazilian jiu-jitsu in Palo Alto, California, and also has experience in kyokushin karate, taekwondo and judo.

Meanwhile, the Russian president is a judo black belt and has co-written the book Judo: History, Theory, Practice.

However, the International Judo Federation and European Judo Federation confirmed they were suspending Putin from his roles as honorary president and ambassador after Russia’s invasion in Ukraine.

World Taekwondo announced: “World Taekwondo has decided to withdraw the honorary ninth dan black belt conferred to Mr Vladimir Putin in November 2013.”

Black belt Putin shows off judo moves with Olympic athletes


If this fight ever went ahead, however unlikely, Putin is specifically trained in judo and has technical skills.

Single combat is too broad a term so it would depend on the rules and techniques allowed.

But, if we’re talking about a UFC-style match, Musk would have the advantage thanks to his weight and height. He stands at 6ft 2in (188cm) and reportedly weighs more than 80kg.

In comparison, Putin’s height is said to be 5ft 5in (168cm), while his weight is reportedly about 70kg.

Putin and Musk have a 19-year age difference, with the entrepreneur the younger combatant, so that could affect the result too

story from HITC