Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Martial Art of Strength Training and Vice Versa

Mr. MARTIAL ART himself. Salutations from an unworthy disciple, Master!

"Sparta, Rome, The Knights of Europe, the Samurai... They worshipped strength, because it is strength that makes all other values possible. Nothing survives without it. Who knows what delicate wonders have died out of the world, for want of the strength to survive."

The above quote from the epic film ENTER THE DRAGON probably sums it up all. Nothing in life and nothing in sports, whatever that might be, survives without strength. It is THE base quality that makes the world go round, again in life and in sports. Strength has a multitude of forms. But for now we will stick to the types required to demolish your opponent in your chosen endeavour.

Lets talk strength training for various combat sports. Be it boxing, kickboxing, judo, tae kwon do or the BAAP of it all, MMA. Speed, some say is the number one requirement, and skill is a very close second or the reverse order for some. Strength, raw, mind numbing, bone crushing strength, surprisingly rarely makes the top three which is downright blasphemic.

As is evident, the Master was an avid lifter himself.

Master Bruce, probably THE fastest martial artist to ever glorify the human race, was incredibly strong, too.
Some of his strength feats are still untouched even today. There are a lot of resources depicting his strength training routine which I would not care to elaborate any more. The fact that remains is YOU GOTTA GET HELLISHLY STRONG! Period!

Consider this, Matt Brown, the celebrated UFC fighter, who has broken the jaw, cheek bone and nose of one of his opponents recently  (I cannot recall the name for now), uses 365 pounds or 166 kilos in the belt squat walking around. 

The PAIN himself is a living proof that brutal strength can earn you an UFC belt...

The recent surge of extreme strength athletes into the MMA world and at times crushing their opponents is proof enough that strength can road roll your opponent into pulps. Then why are you smirking at me? I have won the State championship in kick boxing in my State with not so impressive technique but " I'll tear you up in a minute" kind of a maniac intensity that stemmed from strength.
My teacher, an unbelievably strong guy for his bodyweight...Wanna taste?

You will definitely turn into a terror to your opponents if you do invest at least 40% of your training time into building strength for the sake of strength for the next 6 months.
Junior Dos Santos can break your jaw without even noticing...

Here is one of Brock " the Pain" Lesnar's strength routines:

DAY   EXERCISE                 SETS   REPS

MON   Bench Press              6      12-1
MON   Dumbbell Press           4      6
MON   Dumbbell Flye            3-4    8
MON   Cable Crossover          3      8
MON   Dip                      4      8-10
MON   Pressdown                4      6-8
MON   Lying Triceps Ext.       3      10

TUE   Wide-Grip Pull-Up        4      6
TUE   Med-Grip Pull-Up         4      6
TUE   Close-Grip Pull-Up       4      6
TUE   Close-Grip Pulldown      4      6
TUE   Seated Cable Row         4      6
TUE   Stiff-Legged Deadlift    4      6
TUE   Deadlift                 6      12-1
TUE   EZ-Bar Preacher Curl     3      10
TUE   Hammer Curl              3      10
TUE   Seated Dumbbell Curl     3      10


THU   Dumbbell Front Raise     3      10
THU   Dumbbell Lateral Raise   3      10
THU   Upright Row              4      6
THU   Overhead Barbell Press   6      12-1
THU   Seated Dumbbell Press    4      6
THU   Shrugs                   4      15

FRI   Leg Extension            3      10
FRI   Leg Curl                 3      10
FRI   Close-Stance Squat       4      6
FRI   Med-Stance Squat         4      6
FRI   Wide-Stance              4      6
FRI   Leg Press                6      6



Though the weights are not mentioned, you can and should be pretty fuckin' sure that they were HEAVY.

Another UFC legend George St. Pierre is no wimp about lifting weights either.

But in my opinion the best kind of strength training for a fighter would tend to be more of a mixture of advanced calisthenics movements (including weighted push ups, pull ups, dips, etc.) and strongman type movements, including Sandbag lifting and carrying, lifting partners and moving, farmer's walk with very heavy weights, etc.

The barrel carry WILL give you jaw breaking striking power, even with shitty technique!

The Farmer's Walk, not just for farmers. I might even term it as The Fighter's Walk...
A sandbag and a rope, tools of opponent destruction...

Be it increasing punching power, kicking power, plain old ground and pound or just slamming your opponent onto the mat at 49 m/second square, you get to shop everything at this store. Focus on building rugged strength that others can barely match and be the biggest supplier of patients to the local orthopaedic!

nothing in this post, though, means that you undermine the basic fighting techniques in any way. Far from that. Strength training shall be IN ADDITION TO and NOT IN PLACE OF.
Rugged, Spartan, Effective...

Good technique is a necessity for protecting yourself and strength is indispensable so that your opponent withdraws his name the next time he sees you...

Coming up, a neck break strength routine for the blood thirsties out there with minimal equipment. Till then CRACK the bones... 


  1. Well Done Ani- a Jkd man....itz a really good and huge job.Plz keep it up for future..my all wishes always be with you...just demolish the opponent in anyway