Weight Training Benefits for Fighting

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Weight Training Benefits for Fighting
Original Poster: axkii
Forum: Hand to Hand Combat
Posted On: 15-01-2007, 14:16

Orginal Post: axkii: The subject says it all i guess… i’d just like to see people’s opinions about training particular muscle groups for close combat street fights, and whether a certain type of weight training is more beneficial when it comes to training for close combat fighting and streetfights. Also, is it better to tone (lower weight, more reps) or strengthen (higher weight, less reps) your arm muscles for a mainly fist fight?

Post: a_hab:

Compound lifts (i.e. bench press, squats, deadlifts, power cleans, clean and presses, etc) are best for building strength and power for fighting. Its also best to train in cycles; like 8 weeks devoted to building strength…then 8 weeks devoted to building up muscular endurance…then repeat. No matter what routine you decide to go with, if you’re serious about bettering yourself for a fight, stick to the compound lifts. Isolation lifts are more for toning and defining, which looks great but isn’t much help in a fight.

Do your research, a good place to start is www.bodybuilding.com , they have 1,000s of articles of conditioning for all kinds of sports including boxing, wrestling, and MMA. Its a very very useful site if you’re serious about weight training or conditioning in general.>

Post: bouncer99:

Three lifts are integral to any strength training program: bench press, deadlift, squats. These exercises will build maximum strength throughout the entire body, especially the deadlift and squat, which use pretty much everything below your chest. Deads will also build strength in your biceps and forearms, which are used to grip the heavy barbell. Explosive movements are best, with the emphasis being on heavy weights. Weight training should be used to develop power. Muscular endurance should be developed through calisthenics, sparring, bag work, interval running, fartlek, etc.>

Post: CraigS159:

Just remember that it is more important to have speed and flexibiliy in a fight and not big muscles. Strength is good to have but it should be gained naturally by sparring etc… weights can and should be used to gain power, most important is the forearms. Punch with light weights (e.g. 2-3kg to start with), this will increase your arm strengt and not increase muscle size to much that it will slow you down in a fight.>

Post: bouncer99:

Yes, Craigs right. Strength is important, but it is only a piece of the complete puzzle. In training to fight, one cannot forget to train for fighting. Sparring, bag work, and shadow boxing cannot be neglected if you want to be a complete fighter.>

Post: sullivan92604:

freeweights and cables are awesome…but for me cardio is what I really focus on. I do weight train, but my main focus is jump rope, sit ups, pushups, squats, running and LOTS of heavy bag and focus mits.>

Post: :

I understand what you guys are saying and your philosophy behind only doing your “basics” exercise and not truly training with weights. I just don’t take stock in the philosophy for a few reasons.

1.) Everyone can be stronger. Being stronger is just good….period.

2.) I think the statement that increasing or building too much muscle will hinder you. First, do you know what it takes to seriously bulk up and put on muscle? It’s a lot of freakin work! Trust me, it’s been my ongoing goal to become a freak for the past 4 years amd I’m not even close to where I would love to be. But, serious strength training and has GREATLY improved my fighting game. I am always one of the strongest people and when it comes time to use strength I have it.

3.) All serious fighters and martial artists use some form of strength training. From Mas Oyama, Bruce Lee, Chuck Liddell, to Rex Kwon Do, they all strength train. They realize the benefits behind it.

4.) I cannot think of any reason why someone would not want to be stronger. People maybe nervous about going to the gym or starting off training because they don’t know what to do. Think about it this way, everyone there has been through that exact same thing. Just get in there and do it, but do it right.>

Post: opariser1001:

[quote=Fightauthority.com I understand what you guys are saying and your philosophy behind only doing your “basics” exercise and not truly training with weights. I just don’t take stock in the philosophy for a few reasons.

1.) Everyone can be stronger. Being stronger is just good….period.

2.) I think the statement that increasing or building too much muscle will hinder you. First, do you know what it takes to seriously bulk up and put on muscle? It’s a lot of freakin work! Trust me, it’s been my ongoing goal to become a freak for the past 4 years amd I’m not even close to where I would love to be. But, serious strength training and has GREATLY improved my fighting game. I am always one of the strongest people and when it comes time to use strength I have it.

3.) All serious fighters and martial artists use some form of strength training. From Mas Oyama, Bruce Lee, Chuck Liddell, to Rex Kwon Do, they all strength train. They realize the benefits behind it.

4.) I cannot think of any reason why someone would not want to be stronger. People maybe nervous about going to the gym or starting off training because they don’t know what to do. Think about it this way, everyone there has been through that exact same thing. Just get in there and do it, but do it right.[/quote 

agree…you’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain by strength training…if you think it slows you down, supplement it with lots of bodyweight stuff as well>

Post: CraigS159:

I hope you didnt think that I was saying that you should avoid strength training. It is a big part in martial arts to be strong, what I was trying to say was dont forget the ways that Bruce Lee trained, he did weight train but the technique he used was to lift weights in such a way that his muscles got stronger without putting on too much size. Just because a person has bigger arms, dosent make them stronger. This is from personal experience.
I think that you should weight train but remember that you should still spar, and speed train. This way you should have a good balance.>

Post: Traveller:

I agree with much of what has been said here: big compound lifts will build whole-body strength and it also teaches the limbs to work in unison;

here I would especially like to point out the olympic lifts or their strength variations, mentioned by a-hab in his post: power cleans, clean and press, whatever: I must admit that I am really not good on the english terminology here, but I think we all understand what family of lifts we are talking about.

This kind of training does not only build bigger and stronger muscles; it really improves coordination and the efficient USE of that power they also build.
They are explosive in nature, and that’s why they translate so well into functional strength.

Personally I like to warm-up using light weights in the olympic lifts before going on to power lifts (squat, dead, bench) and often additional back work.

The idea of using the olympic lift in a lightweight warm-up is especially good for beginners, making sure they learn good form and confidence in the exercises before hoisting heavy weights. Other lifts are easier to learn, so it is possible to build muscle with them while slowly incorporating the olympic lifts into a training regimen.

Ofcourse I also agree with what’ve been said; cardio and fight-specific martial arts training is of great importance when training to fight. But the original question of this thread was about weighttraining.

Please bear in mind that I am but an amateur and I would accept constructive criticism of my views with thanks and consideration.>

Post: :

Traveller, opariser1001 and I lift that exact way. Squats, Deads, Cleans and Press, Push Press, High Pulls, Heavy Rows, etc. That is a focus of our routine. I personally believe it is the most benefical way to train for a martial artist and for functional “real world” strength.>

Post: Galaknore:

I am pretty familiar with most weight lifting excercies, but what are high pulls? I’m sure I have probably seen them, but I am just curious.>

Post: :

http://www.exrx.net/WeightExercises/OlympicLifts/HighPull.html

But I like using the trap bar with them. You can also use a snatch grip as well.>

Post: WushuPadawan001:

I believe that the most important thing to keep in mind is how weight training effects the style one practices. Adapt weight training to meet your style?s needs.

For instance, I practice Chinese Martial Arts (Kung Fu, Wushu, and Taiji). Huge muscles are not going to help much in these styles, so when I weight train I do primarily light weight/high rep workouts.

On anther note: I understand that this post refers to weight training, but I find it very interesting that no one has mentioned yoga as an alternative or supplement to weight training. Yoga builds muscle in such a way that one gains strength without taking on the mass associated with weight training. That?s not to mention the obvious balance and flexibility benefits.>

Post: Traveller:

I’d just like to say I’m happy to have found this forum… I’m sure it will be a great inspiration and motivation booster for my training in the future!

WushuPadawan: I appreciate your point but I think the reason no one has mentioned style-specific training is that the original question was about preparing for h2h combat, not sports or athleticism.

I’m a Taiji practitioner as well, and have done some Hung Gar in my past. The explosive weight training will IMO be perfect for the chinese martial artist, implemented with a high-rep system as you describe or perhaps cycling, making sure you always translate your new-built strength into strength-endurance along the way. Personally I think strength training won’t do much for one’s qualities in Taijiquan. But for competetive wushu, ofcourse!

About the way you describe your effects from yoga, I can relate to yoga building strength, strength-endurance; neurological strength and a better use of once’s muscular strength. If one is actually physically “building muscle” one will pack on some volume. Not that there is anything wrong with that.
Research shows that streching will actually improve hypertrophy in strength-training individuals as long as their not overtraining.>

Post: Galaknore:

Thx for the link. :D>

Post: Traveller:

fightauthority.com and opariser: it’s nice to hear that other people, probably more experienced than me, come to the same conclusions about topics that I care about. My theoretical background is somewhat limited and very main-stream, so I have been forced to make my own conclusions.

Do you have any literature on strength training for combat athletes, or building on the same training philosophy, that you would recommend?>

Post: :

The philosophy isn’t original in any manner, it’s basically a solid routine built upon routines that are used by strength athletes. A lot of some good books and information can be found from www.ironmind.com.

I recommend Bill Star’s Book: The Strongest Will Survive, Super Squats, Dinsouar Training.

I’m not an expert by any means, but if you have some questions on lifts or routines I might be able to help.>

Post: Traveller:

Thanks alot, I’ll check those out. The ironmind site is great! I understand that this kind of training philosophy is nothing new and fancy, but the average trainee never stumbles across strength athletes or combat athletes where I live.. or their routines.

In Norway, there really isn’t much of a culture for combat sports as competition is outlawed; strength sports are also somewhat of an oddity. Strength athletes train in their own places. I think I have heard of two commercial gyms in the whole capital that has a proper lifting platform; otherwise it’s all body-for-life wherever you turn.

Thanks for the tips and links!>

Post: :

Ahhhh, good luck!>

Post: samurai6string:

just to throw in my 2 cents here, :) didn’t Charles Atlas spend most of his career dispelling the muscle bound myth? I remember in particular seeing him and some of his weight training partners who were all ripped like no body’s business, making a human pyramid with the people at the bottom actually doubled over backwards almost like in a neck bridge.

A Kineseologist who was also my Anatomy & Physiology teacher, told me that you would have to increase your muscle mass by a VERY significant amount before it would begin to interfere with your flexibility, which translates as speed when kicking or punching.>

Post: angryrocker4:

You do get a tightening effect if you dont do something to keep limber, stretch a bit, whatever. I know I did from powerlifting, especially the shoulders.>

Post: samurai6string:

Angry> well, yeah, I kinda assumed that went without saying, I just meant that the mass alone won’t do it. :) But you know what happens when you assume things. Besides, maybe your shoulder soreness is more due to wielding giant axes all the time…>

Post: angryrocker4:

could be, I’ve been doin alot of killing and pillaging lately.>

Post: Traveller:

What is usually percieved as muscle boundness I believe will usually come from one or several of these factors:

1) *too frequent* weight training with inadequate stretching and mobility work, with the stiffening / tightening effect as already mentioned

2) unbalanced weight training; a phenomenon I have frequently seen in commercial gyms is young men training too much chest and shoulder musculature without strengthening their backsides to the same extent. Also young men will often overemphasize the biceps over the triceps in isolation movement, or overemphasize arms over the rest of the body alltogether!

The extreme focus on bench pressing results in a wierd, hollow posture I often recognize in “weekend warriors” out on the clubs. I’ve met several amateur martial artists who actually train this way. I like to call it boobybuilding.

3) Uncoordinated weight training; placing the emphasis on isolation movement will not teach the body to work as a whole but according to some theorists it will even decrease the inherent ability to do so or hinder the development of such ability from other activities.

ALSO: having great muscular strength will often make it harder to learn skills in soft throwing arts and other arts based on the use of natural leverage such as aikido, judo and taiji quan. If you can easily push or throw your opponent using brute strength you will often not “get” the technique or go on believing that you do it right when you really is employing too much strength. This is no reason not to strength train; it is but a reason for the strong to be extra vigilent watchers of their own technique during training!

– keep in mind that I am but an amateur and always enjoy constructive criticism of my views!->

Post: Chrisy1:

Try Kettlebells and Clubbells. Functional Power training is the key here…….>

Post: paperchaser:

I think the answer to this question should always be individualized. If a guy is seriously underweight, then the first thing he needs to do is put on mass by traditional powerlifting/bodybuilding techniques.

But once a guy reaches average size/strength, I share the view that others have posted that dynamic resistance excercises are far more effective than static. To illustrate, bench presses don’t simulate punches. But throwing punches with resistance bands or cable/pulley weights is a full range of motion with resistance. Many pro boxers throw punches in the pool for the same effect. Try kicking in water and you’ll see that no amount of squats can develop the kind of kicking power that water resistance can.

Static weights can be good for developing problem areas, recovering from injury, or just a change of pace. Olympic style powerlifting is great for developing balance and power.

Look, weightlifting will generally not hurt a martial-artist. But most of have only so many hours of the day to train. I wouldn’t put static strength training at the core of a routine with limited time to train. Dynamic techniques offer more bang for the buck.>

Post: the_promise:

hi the promise here weight are go but if you want to focus on fighting it is bad. If you us weights you will have to practice 2 times as more with out. to maintain the natural flow of your body. so i would say us weight but only to stretch and strengthen the muscle your targeting.

with God all thangs are posible,
the_Promise, peace>

Post: bamboo:

Promise, in future please clean up your posts. They are very difficult to read.

Thank you.

bamboo>

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