Athletic Weight Training – Martial Artist Training

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Athletic Weight Training - Martial Artist Training
Athletic Weight Training – Martial Artist Training

Below are a couple of basic training schedules for “athletes” to help gain muscular weight for sports. Each workout consists of one pulling , one pushing , and one squatting movement, which is the basic premise outlined in my “Quality Over Quantity” article.

The idea is keep your training schedule simple ! Athletes who strength train for other sports are better off just doing their 3 core exercises with no more than 3 extra minor exercises. Essentially it’s y our core exercises that are the main indicator of how much you’re improving.

It’s important to leave a little gas in your tank before leaving the weight room. Remember m ost of your gains are made on your off days during your recuperating time! Thus it’s important to be recuperated in time for your next workout, and this can’t be done with too many frivolous exercises in your training schedule. Also, don’t forget to eat sensibly and get plenty of sleep .

Finally to reiterate my “Quality Over Quantity” philosophy. Athletes are better off doing as much as they can standing on their own two feet holding the weights in their own two hands. There are no sports of any consequence where an athlete excels laying flat on their back. Also don’t be fooled into believing that certain weight training exercises will improve athletic skills in other sports. The specificity of your specific sport activity is what equates to the best performance in that sport. The weight training is primarily to build the best physical foundation for your sport, not the sport’s skill.

NOTE: Precede all workouts with a good warm up and stretch.

TRAINING SCHEDULE #1: geared for the Power lifting oriented athlete.

MONDAY

  • Power Clean – 3 sets of 3 reps warm up, then 3 to 5 sets of 3 reps with a work weight, about 80% of a 1RM.
  • Bench Press – (medium to heavy day)- (if med)- 3 sets of 5 to 6 reps warm up then 3 sets of 5 with a work weight. (if heavy)- work up over six sets of 5 to 6 reps to limit set of 3 to 5 reps on the last set. A rule of thumb puts a limit triple at about 90% of one’s 1RM.
  • Squat – (light speed day)- one warm up set of 10 reps. Then 5 sets of 5 reps with no more than 65% and no more than 60 seconds rest between sets. Start with 60% . Apply 100% effort on every rep and do each rep as fast as possible.

WEDNESDAY

  • One Power Clean followed by 3 Military Presses followed by 2 Push Presses for 5 reps total per set – 3 warm up sets, then 3 sets of 5 reps with a work weight.
    (For a description of these exercises read: The Power Clean & Push Press & Strict Presses
  • Deadlift – warm up- 10 reps, 6 reps, 4 reps, then the same work weight for 3 to 4 sets of 3 to 4 reps. The Romanian DL or Straight Back Clean Style DL’s are recommended. (On clean DL’s use about 80% of your 1RM your first workout.)(On RDL’s weight is not as important as doing the exercise correctly with strict form.)
    NOTE: Because squats and deadlifts overlap the working of a lot of the same muscles, squats are not recommended the same day as deadlifts.

FRIDAY

  • Bent Row – 3 sets of 5 to 6 reps warm up, then 3 sets of 5 to 6 reps with a work weight.
  • Squat – (medium to heavy day) same formula as BP on Monday.
  • Bench Press – (light speed day) same formula as Squat on Monday.

TRAINING SCHEDULE #2: geared for the Olympic lifting oriented athlete.

MONDAY

  • Power Clean – 3 sets of 3 reps warm up, then 3 to 5 sets of 3 reps with a work weight, about 80% of a 1RM.
  • Incline Press – (medium to heavy day)- (if med)- 3 sets of 5 to 6 reps warm up then 3 sets of 5 with a work weight. (if heavy)- work up over six sets of 5 to 6 reps to limit set of 3 to 5 reps on the last set. A rule of thumb puts a limit triple at about 90% of one’s 1RM.
  • Front Squat – (light speed day)- one warm up set of 10 reps. Then 5 sets of 5 reps with no more than 65% and no more than 60 seconds rest between sets. Start with 60% . Apply 100% effort on every rep and do each rep as fast as possible.

WEDNESDAY

  • Clean & Jerk – warm up- Step 1: start with a light weight or empty bar, do 3 cleans followed by 3 front squats, followed by 3 jerks. Step 2: increase weight for a slightly heavier warm up set and repeat step 1′s procedure. Step 3: increase the weight slightly more from step 2 and do doubles (2 reps) instead of triples (3 reps). Step 4: 80% for 5 to 6 singles.
    NOTE: Based upon a 300 C&J, the following warm up approach is recommended. 135X3PC’s+3FS’s+3JK’s, 185X3+3+3, 215X2+2+2, 240X 5 to 6 singles.
  • Romanian Deadlift – warm up- 10 reps, 6 reps, 4 reps, then the same work weight for 3 to 4 sets of 3 to 4 reps. (maximum weight used should be about 110% to 115% of your C&J)(it’s imperative that this exercise be done strict, no cheating what so ever).
    NOTE: Because squats and deadlifts overlap the working of a lot of the same muscles, heavy squats are not recommended the same day as deadlifts. Also squat cleans can count as a squat workout.

FRIDAY

  • Power Snatch – same formula as Monday’s Power Cleans.
  • Front Squat – (medium to heavy day) same formula as IP on Monday.
  • Incline Press – (light speed day) same formula as Front Squat on Monday.

NOTHING IS WRITTEN IN STONE!!!

There’s no rule in athletic weight training that says you can’t modify things a little. Everyone is different! Different people will respond differently to different exercises. Also there’s nothing wrong with combining a little of each of the two above training schedules. Personally I like the “power orient” schedule, but I detest bench presses. So I usually  would opt for inclines instead.

Another change you could do on Schedule #2 is back sided squats instead of front squats. Also not everyone is physically able to do all the Olympic lifting movements! Example: If snatches aren’t to your liking, you can always just do the power cleans again, or do a more conventional exercise like bent rows or chins. IMO if you’re not going to compete in Olympic lifting contests, snatches won’t be missed, but I still recommend some speed pulling like power cleans or clean pulls . NOTE: If your technique on power cleans or power snatches is sub par, you would be much better off just using these exercises for warm ups. Then, if you want to go heavier on your speed pulling, do clean pulls or snatch pulls.

Now, if time permits or you have a little energy to spare, you can always add some optional exercises after your three (3) core exercises, Examples are: dips (but not recommended on a heavy BP or IP day), French presses, curls, chins, lat pulls, calf raises, leg extensions, leg curls.

Keep in mind that some exercises, particularly isolation movements, put more shear force on the connective tissues of the muscles and the joints themselves. For this reason I recommend less sets and higher reps here! Choose only one or two of these exercises. The idea is to weight train to make gains, not injuries . Example: 3 sets of 10 reps on curls, French presses, or chins can be a good finish off to the above schedule. If lat pulls, calf raises, leg extensions, or leg curls are to your liking, higher reps seem to work better. We’ve found that a couple of sets in 20 to 25 rep range work well here for extra blood circulation. On chins and lat pulls you can do one set of each, or a couple of sets of lat pulls then finish off with an all out set of chins. Remember, nothing is written in stone.

CYCLING!!!
If one is interested in cycling up to a limit 1RM on a snatch or C&J, I recommend an 8 to 10 week cycle. If you’re competing, that’s about 5 to 6 contests per year. Example: WK1- 75% to 80%, WK2- 80% to 85%, WK3- 85% to 90%, WK4- 90% to 100%, WK5- 82% to 87%, WK6- 87% to 92%, WK7- 92% to 97%, WK8- 95% to 100%, WK9- 85% to 90 % WK10- contest 100% to 103%.

Generally, when working with trainees as a weightlifting coach, I’ve found that some trainees can work up to a maximum lift on the snatch more often than the C&J! This is because recovery is usually quicker from their snatches. Thus it’s possible to peak on the snatch in that 10 week period maybe two to three times, while maybe only getting one peak C&J in the same period of time.

Now if you’re, let’s say, a week or two out from a contest, and you’re feeling extra strong, but you’re apprehensive that you might leave your best lifts in the gym, hold back a little and do 3 to 5 singles with a lesser weight. Save your best for a contest!

Generally I like my trainees to do their first contest attempt 3 to 4 times in the gym, rather than them doing an all-out effort. Of course if their lifts look extra easy to me, as their coach, I might recommend they try the PR in the gym, always with the expectation of them doing a little more in the contest. But I never like a trainee to do more than 3 misses on a PR attempt outside of a contest environment!

If you’re in such a situation where you miss, but you feel strongly you have the lift in you, try dropping back in weight and then work back up over 3 attempts again to your target weight. If you miss, drop back again and repeat the fore mentioned approach. If you miss the third time, save it for another day.

By: J.V. Askem
Information from: marunde-muscle.com

 

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