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Strength training and MMA discussion

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by Zerocrew1984, Oct 9, 2010.

  1. Zerocrew1984 Banned Banned

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    I'd like to see this discussion keep going and not closed. What are people's opinions regarding training for mma. Should you have plyos and olympic lifting in? Should it only be heavy sets of 1-5? etc. Please refrain from personal attacks.

    mtruitt76-
    A straight power lifting routine is probably not the best routine for acquiring functional strength for MMA fighters and grapplers. Athletes from other sports don't follow a powerlifting routine for their respective sports, but they have access to professional strength and conditioning coaches. Now I don't fight MMA but, I do a lot of BJJ competitions and compete in the major tournaments i.e Pan Ams, Worlds. Since there is not much money in grappling and it is still in its infancy as a sport, there aren't any professional strength and conditioning coaches designing strength routines for BJJ. So it would be nice if this forum would be more concerned with developing routines for MMA and grappling since so few professional are devoting their time to the sport.

    I know the FAQ says you just get stronger, but it is not like that thing was written by a professional strength and conditioning coach. Heck I don't even know who wrote that thing, so I don't see why it should be considered the gospel truth and the end of the discussion. It is mainly a newb guide anyway. If you are an experienced lifter there is not much in there of value and there is nothing sport specific in it either.


    Good link:
    http://www.sherdog.net/forums/44333475-post13.html
     
  2. joshetc butthole hurts from teh gay

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    yeh look at troy polamalu.. he does nothing but plyos and hes one of the best safeties in the NFL
     
  3. JRT6 Black Belt

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    Number one I don't think the S&C forum is anti hypertrophy and in fact Dan John promots hypertrophy for guys getting older. However this is not the place for talking about oiling up and putting on posing trunks. It just isn't so why doses that bother some people so much? Two; there are so man other forums out there that concentrate on bodybuilding and who wants every forum to be the same.
     
  4. grrthetree Green Belt

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    The reason the FAQ is based on just improving strength is because all the people coming to the SC forum would benefit from basic barbell strength training. Once a well established base of strength is there, olympic lifting, plyos, etc. would all be put to better use. If the FAQ had all the resources on power cleans, snatches, and different plyos and how to program them, you'd get all these people who aren't strong doing all these explosive lifts with shitty form and hurting themselves.
     
  5. JRT6 Black Belt

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    Isn't the oldest maxim: "strong muscles are big muscles"?
     
  6. TrainingAdict Orange Belt

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    I never competed in MMA but I've grappled / kickboxed sparred in the boxing gym for a few years and here are my simple observations.

    For beginners or those that lack strength, a pure strength routine would be more beneficial for them than doing olympic workouts / plyometrics.

    But there is a diminishing returns as well. After a certain point, for say a middleweight class, the difference between a 400lb deadlift and a 500lb deadlift is not that significant in a bout or a grappling match.


    I've also seen a 180lb construction worker that never touched a barbbell in his life, come into the class and completely tore apart guys that were 200lb+ that had years and years of experience over him. What he lacked in technique he made up for in brute strength.

    Would a strength routine be beneficial for him? Probably.
    Is there better ways to spend his time than to strength train? Definately.

    I don't think a pure strength building routine is applicable to everybody in MMA. Everyone is different and has different backgrounds.

    But I 100% believe those that lack strength would be best served with a pure strength building routine.

    And afterwards, incorporating more explosive movements once they've reached a certain level of pure strength for their weight class.
     
  7. Zerocrew1984 Banned Banned

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    So if I was stronger I would have better form in the olympic lifts? That doesn't make sense. Good form is good form.
     
  8. joshetc butthole hurts from teh gay

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    No.. the reason it is that way is cause someone decided it was a good idea to merge the strength and power forum with the conditioning forum but the FAQs for the strength and power forum were far more elaborate and obviously only tailored to strength and power.
     
  9. mtruitt76 Purple Belt

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    Hopefully we can keep this thread open since there is not the same level of knowledge concerning appropriate MMA/ grappling S&C routines as there is for power lifting for example.

    The link TS provide and which was present in the second closed thread is the type of information we need and should be discussed.

    Inside BJJ has a S&C coach who has worked with Robert Drysdale and Abmar Barbosa discussing S&C for grappling and has some good information. Here is a link to the article. Strength & Conditioning for Jiu-Jitsu Part II by Leo Morton : Inside BJJ

    From what I can gather a simple "get stronger" approach will be lacking and not optimal for MMA and competitive sport BJJ. Your routine should include the major lifts (i.e squat, dead lift, bench press) but some explosive movements also need to be incorporate along with muscle endurance and condition routines like barbell complexes and interval training.

    Personally I have been doing 5/3/1 on a two day a week split. Squat/Press one day with dead lift/ bench press on the other with one day for barbell complexes and one day for interval work. I don't believe this is optimal, however. I am lacking an explosive training component and I am not sure what the best method of incorporating this element into routine is.

    Anyway curious to see what other competitors are doing for S&C and to hear people's opinion on whether periodization routines, which will produce the best maximal strength gains, are best suited for S&C routines for MMA and grappling competitors.
     
  10. grrthetree Green Belt

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    Not form. I can't really describe it, but if you have someone who is squatting 135 as a max effort, would you want them to be devoting time to oly lifting, plyos, etc.? No, their time would be better devoted to just getting stronger. Maybe I worded all that wrong.
     
  11. XTrainer Red Belt

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    Obviously, training for powerlifting is by definition an idiotic way to train for MMA...because it's training for powerlifting.

    Specificity is a real thing. You get better at the things you do and practice. So, a guy can be, or rather seem, "stronger" at MMA, or BJJ, or soccer, compared to a physically identical athlete (or even a generally stronger athlete) who is unfamiliar with whatever sport we're talking about. But, that's all a matter of skill, technique, and efficiency.

    Strength is simply the ability to produce force. There is no "MMA strong," "football strong," etc. There is just "strong." How effectively and efficiently you apply that strength in any given endeavor is a matter of skill, technique, and familiarity with those sorts of endeavors.
     
  12. mtruitt76 Purple Belt

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    This is true, but some people have a good strength base. A pertinent question for competitors is how strong is strong enough? If you are at and advanced or elite level in your lifts, is it worth the effort to keep increasing your numbers in the main lifts. Are these added gains going to translate into additional functional strength?

    Personally I don't know the answer, but I do know that increasing your squat from 500 to 550 takes a bit of work and the relative gain in strength will be small. People who are new to lifting can make big gains in both numbers and will see a large relative gain in strength. Advance and elite lifters will not.

    So if you are an advanced or elite lifter, where should you devote your efforts?
     
  13. XTrainer Red Belt

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    Also note, the FAQ at issue here is addressing the question of strength specifically. Saying "to get stronger for MMA, you need to get stronger" (what the FAQ actually says) is not the same as "to excel in MMA, the only physical training you should do is strength training" (a very silly idea that a lot of people seem to think the FAQs say).
     
  14. grrthetree Green Belt

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    Ok, but some time still needs to be devoted to heavy lifts in order to get the form down and have the muscle groups involved with big lifts work together.

    I think it's called kinetic linking, but don't quote me on it, and when a specific muscle group, like the posterior chain, works together in a big lift like the deadlift, it becomesm ore efficient.
     
  15. Tosa Red Belt

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    You'd have to compare various abilities (strength, conditioning, skills/technique) and consider what's weak, what's good, how much work/benefit would be involved in improving those qualities, and then consider how much time you can train, and what sort of work load you can manage, and so on. So it's not about specific numbers.
     
  16. BaliShagSmoke Orange Belt

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    I think I know what you're saying and I agree. A person who can squat 315 more or less gets it. He is coordinated enough to perform the lift safely under heavy loads, knows when form broke down on a rep, and has a general awareness of how to move weight. He will be more receptive when learning the complicated technique of O-lifts.

    A person just starting out who can barely squat 95 has no idea if he hit depth or not, no idea if he is first breaking at the hips, has no idea if he good morning'ed the weight or had some other form breakdown. He will be lost when first learning the O-lifts.

    So the prescription is to start strength training with SS or something similar because the big three are complicated enough as it is but will help develop the coordination and body awareness needed for more advanced training.
     
  17. mtruitt76 Purple Belt

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    Okay I will use myself as an example, since sometimes it is easier to deal with a specific example than generalities.

    For the skills/technique portion: I do 8 BJJ training sessions a week. This is all the training session which I can attend in a week without quitting my job. I would like to do more but the option is not available.

    Strength: My maxes are around 500 lbs in squat, 550 in dead lift, 300 on incline bench (I have had shoulder problems in past and flat bench aggravates my shoulders while incline does not) 200 lbs in military press at a body weight of 195 lbs.

    Conditioning-I don't ever gas while rolling during class and we will do sparring for30-45 minutes straight. I have never gassed in a tournament. I have gotten tired, but I have never lost due gassing.

    I can devote 4 training sessions a week to S&C and still keep one day for rest. I wouldn't say I have a weak area, so the question is what is an optimal S&C routine?

    I currently use a periodized routine, 5/3/1, for 2 sessions a week, complexes for one, and interval training for one. At this point in my lifting the only way to increase my strength, i.e my numbers in the main lifts, is to use a periodized routine or at least increase my strength in any appreciable way. However, no matter what my relative gains will be small.

    I don't think what I am doing is bad, but I doubt it is optimal. So I have been trying to do some research on what an optimal routine would be and was hoping some people in a similar situation might have some insight or personal experience they could share.
     
  18. leftovercrack Yellow Belt

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    I've been reading these threads and laughing and don't really see where the problem is haha

    I know the S&C did absolutley help me get stronger and put my strength training into perspective. I've had 2 mma fights now and the difference in strength between the 2 fights has really been a huge source of confidence for me.

    When I found this forum I was weak for my weight class and following a retarded 4 day a week bodybuilding routine trying to build strength but it honestly didn't seem to translate to the cage that well.

    The faq on this site clearly lays it out for getting a good base of strength and then talks at lengths about incorporating other lifts, movements, plyo's etc. into your Strength program to develop explosive power, muscular endurance and all things needed for mma. Just gotta follow the links and read.

    So I build up a good base strength using starting strength and when I started feeling really strong on the mats and was happy with how my lifts were I started adding in step ups, jump squats, plyo work etc. and am really feeling more powerful and stronger grappling, sparring fighting then I did before when I was following body parts and isolation lifts.

    Then I found an awesome conditioning thread by Joel, and started to adapt some of his techniques addressing my weaknesses, mainting my strengths and my fight cardio has improved dramatically and been another source of confidence for me which comes with more advantages.

    I got strong lifting and eating. I adapted my program to include some excercises practical for my sport and got stronger, more explosive. I don't think I've ever asked one question on this particular forum and have always found the answers I was looking for.

    Of course I view my strength and conditioning as a long journey that is gonna need to adapt alot as years go by and I'm glad to have a place that does a good job of seperating the bullshit from the facts and makes it easier for me.



    What's the problem?
     
  19. James Fuller Amateur Fighter

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    Yes but big muscles are not always strong muscles. That was the real crux of my point using such extreme examples is that mass for its own sake is that you are forced to fuel it aka turn bright purple when fighting for over 2 minutes lol. I think for mma your lifts as % relative to your fight weight is the best standard.

    Plus to always paraphrase rip most conventional wisdom is patent bullshit. Doubly so for mma. Btw thank you zero crew for getting a better vetsion of the discussion going again. "i am only an egg"
     
  20. Tosa Red Belt

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    You seem to have found a pretty good balance between strength conditioning and skill work. The basics are all there, good strength (for someone who doesn't compete in a strength sport), good conditioning, and plenty of skill work. So you're going to have to figure out what particular qualities you'd like to develop/benefit most from developing. Maybe it's the lactic acid energy system, or grip, or you want to address your shoulder issues, and do some work to improve shoulder health, or explosiveness. Ie. using block periodization to improve specific aspects of S&C, while still getting work on the more general aspects.

    It's also possible that depending on the amount of time you spend on strength work and conditioning work, that combined workouts could work well for you...ex. warm-up, one 5/3/1 lift, assistance/prehab done as a circuit, conditioning work, foam rolling, mobility work, done. Although this may not be better, but just a different way of arranging things.

    You can also consider if there's anything you can do to improve recovery. Do you include activite recovery? How much do you sleep? Is it sound? How is your diet? Supplements? Foam rolling? Stress from other areas of your life?

    Also, keep in mind that very little is ever "optimal"...even the best athletes in the world don't necessarily have optimal routines. There's only so much a person can do, which means there's always going exercises, methods, conditioning that can't be included...this is normal, it doesn't mean a routine isn't a great fit for you. What you can do, however, is refine your training, learn more, and make improvements where possible. The result won't be an optimal routine, only a better one.

    That's what I'd like to know. If someone has an approach other than "just get fucking strong" for strength training as applied to MMA or other martial arts, and can present a cogent argument for it, I'm all ears (or eyes, because I'd be reading, instead of listening).
     

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