Functional Movement is King!
We have all been at that stage in our chosen sport, particularly with regards to combat sports and martial arts, where we ask our teacher or trainer ‘how do I get stronger and fitter?’
The answer to this question isn’t as broad as you might think; it can refer to very a specific set of skills, depending on which sport they are training for. So, for instance; Muay Thai – ‘I want to kick, knee or elbow harder or faster or be stronger in the Thai clinch’. BJJ – ‘be more explosive with sweeps and takedowns or have stronger jiu-jitsu or judo grips’.
The answer is rarely going to be ‘go and lift some weights and go running’- I think we all know that, however, it’s probably not going to be a one-size-fits-all approach either.
We all have things we are good at and areas we are faster or stronger in. On the flip-side, we all have areas we are weaker or slower in. Using functional strength and cardio training specific to your sport or martial art is key. A simple example being rope climbing to improve upper body and grip for BJJ or plyometric box jumps for explosiveness in legs for kicks - that kind of thing.
Use your time wisely...
‘You may delay, but time will not, and lost time is never found again’
- Benjamin Franklin
One thing that is constant for all of us is that we only have a limited amount of time each day. Time for any of us as individuals is not infinite (unless you know something we don’t). We have to take the time we do have and plan it wisely, specifically with regards to strength, cardio and your chosen sport.
Without proper planning or preparation, you could end up making things harder for yourself in the short term and therefore in the long run, too. For instance, you could be too tired from strength training exercises to be able to perform well in your chosen sport.
You may have had a heavy weights session on your legs, turn up to a Muay Thai class the next night and wince every time you kick a bag or take a light shot to the leg. This will surely hinder your performance and slow you right down, so allowing for rest time is vital to any successful training schedule. A key thing to keep in mind is that rest doesn’t have to be resting your whole body, just specific muscle groups.
Putting together your own training schedule can be quite difficult without support, however if you don’t have support, do give it a try for yourself as some planning is better than none!
If you do want some advice don’t hesitate to speak to someone at the gym and we can talk you through the first steps and put together a plan for you.