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Strength & Power Training Discussion of strength training as part of your MMA conditioning program.

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Old 04-01-2011, 02:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Sit ups and push ups everyday?

Is it a good idea to do crunches , push ups , and squats everyday?

I do at least 100 of each everyday , then I have some whey protein after.
But i just heard (from a bodybuilders perspective) that its not a good thing to do.
So from an mma perspective , is it good or bad to do them everyday or not?
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Old 04-01-2011, 03:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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the situps could eventually cause you some back problems i think, id imagine that was one thing your friend was thinking of.

cant see any problem with the pushups, and if you use proper technique on the squats they would prob. be ok i think. Sure someone be along in a bit more knowledgeable than me though to help out.
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Old 04-01-2011, 05:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Back in the day when i used to lift alot and work out with personal trainers, the one thing I remember them saying was that abs are the one muscle group that couldn't be over trained. IMO sit ups, crunches are fine. The other exercises are probably also OK given your quantity.

From an MMA perspective, Liddell's book pretty much sums it up. MMA is not about strength, but strength over time..
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Old 04-04-2011, 02:37 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Halfraq9 View Post
Back in the day when i used to lift alot and work out with personal trainers, the one thing I remember them saying was that abs are the one muscle group that couldn't be over trained. IMO sit ups, crunches are fine. The other exercises are probably also OK given your quantity.

From an MMA perspective, Liddell's book pretty much sums it up. MMA is not about strength, but strength over time..
What does he mean by strength over time?
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Old 04-04-2011, 09:57 PM   #5 (permalink)
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What does he mean by strength over time?
He probably means strength endurance (which you train with lower weights, but a higher number of repetition) as opposed to maximum strength or hypertrophy (which you train with highest/high weights, but a low number of repetitions).

In fighting you need primarily strength endurance to prevent your muscles from tiring quickly, because fights usually are longer than ~20 seconds which is about the timespan you can use your muscles at maximum strength. That has something to do with the lactic acids that are build as a byproduct while muscle work. If you're interested search for unaerobic and aerobic metabolism.

Last edited by Voiceless : 04-04-2011 at 10:11 PM.
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Old 04-04-2011, 10:15 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I would imagine that "strength over time" is meant as endurance or how well you can maintain what strength you have over the course of the fight. For example, it's great if you can bench press 600lbs and you use that surge of strength to throw a guy across the ring/cage, but if you can only use that kind of strength once and then you're totally zapped of all strength/energy, what did it really matter?

There's nothing outright wrong about doing 100 push ups, crunches, and squats every day. But there's two things to consider.
1) If you're sore the next day and you do your 100/100/100 anyway, you're on your way to "overtraining". If you're sufficiently working out your muscles, they need rest and recovery so that they can repair. You have to realize that your actual muscle growth comes not while strength training, but during the nights and days after the strength training session. The actual growth comes from proper rest. I'm not saying you're overtraining now, only you can really judge that because only you know your body. But if you're constantly sore and still trying to strength train, I'd definitely be weary of overtraining.
2) You're training your endurance, but not your maximal strength. Endurance is great and very important for martial arts training - it's downright vital. But maximal strength is what makes you move and hit faster and harder (especially when coupled with plyometrics). There's nothing wrong with continuing on the way you are, because having wicked muscular endurance can be great and very, very useful. Just realize that if you're trying to get actually "stronger", you probably will not see many real gains in that way.

Those two things being said, if you're getting the results you want to see from the strength and conditioning stuff you're doing, then there's nothing wrong with it.

Your abdominals are a regular muscle like any other muscle in your body, and as such, can be overtrained like any other muscle. It's almost impossible to overtrain your abs with just crunches though, so don't sweat it. I don't know the technical reasoning, just experiences, personal and otherwise.

Long story short, your routine is basically fine. No glaring errors or issues.
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Old 04-05-2011, 05:27 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'll address each workout individually, then try to sum it up to the best of my understanding.

Sit ups. There's absolutely nothing wrong with doing situps/crunches everyday. This is mostly because you don't work the muscles with a single rep nearly as hard as you work your chest with a single rep of bench pressing, or your hamstrings with a single rep of squats. This means there is less lactic acidosis buildup in the muscles, less tearing of the muscle fibers, and less stress overall. The advantages of such, is abs with very high endurance, pretty much the only use for abs in MMA is endurance and as a shell over the organs (IMO).

Pushups. Definitely useful in MMA. And if you can bang out 100 every day, that's a real good things. The upper body is where most fighters' muscular endurance fails first, removing that failue from the equation makes winning a lot easier.

Squats. This is where things get very situational. I'll go with BW squats first since the other two exercises were body weight I'll assume squats are as well. Deep BW squats are a good way to develop endurance in the hamstrings, and to a protracted degree the quads, calfs, stabiliazers, etc. However, this does potentially lead to a failure in the joints. The reason most baseball catchers retire is from chronic injuries to their knees from an excessive amount of time spent in a deep squated postion, Bas Rutten also discussed a similar injury he has during his interview on Joe Rogan's podcast. Something to keep in mind, and maybe decrease the number of reps marginally. If these squats are weighted squats, its again a measure of the amount of reps. In this case I would say that squats should be done every other day in that by providing weight you are significantly increasing the trauma to the muscles and joints with each rep.

As a whole, these workouts effectively develop endurance in their areas of effect. However if the goal is to develop overall strength, in the long term body weight workouts are ineffective. Much higher weights than one's natural body weight are needed to develop those areas. Explosiveness can be developed through modified body weight workouts like squat jumps, clapping pushups, etc.

In MMA, there is absolutely nothing more important than endurance. Bas Rutten has talked about this, Chuck Liddell has talked about it. As a initial basic workout to develop those areas these numbers seem pretty solid.
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Old 04-05-2011, 06:29 PM   #8 (permalink)
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The reason most baseball catchers retire is from chronic injuries to their knees from an excessive amount of time spent in a deep squated postion,
Is that a known common problem¿ (I'm not so familiar with baseball) I know that in East-Asia people spend a lot of time sitting in a deep squatted position so they don't have to touch the ground with any other part than their feet when there are no chairs and obviously don't have these kind of problems. I tried to do that, but couldn't sit for long in this kind of position without my legs getting numb at some time. So maybe it's a matter of being used to it from childhood on.

I know though that doing squats with additional weight is something to be careful with to not damage your knees.
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Old 04-05-2011, 06:36 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Is that a known common problem¿ (I'm not so familiar with baseball) I know that in East-Asia people spend a lot of time sitting in a deep squatted position so they don't have to touch the ground with any other part than their feet when there are no chairs and obviously don't have these kind of problems. I tried to do that, but couldn't sit for long in this kind of position without my legs getting numb at some time. So maybe it's a matter of being used to it from childhood on.

I know though that doing squats with additional weight is something to be careful with to not damage your knees.
Yeah, its pretty common among baseball catchers. Some have to have several knee surgeries during their career as a stop-gap to minimize the process that wears away at the cartillage until eventually there's none left.
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Old 04-05-2011, 07:11 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Yeah, its pretty common among baseball catchers. Some have to have several knee surgeries during their career as a stop-gap to minimize the process that wears away at the cartillage until eventually there's none left.
Ah, ok, I've googled some pictures and I think the difference is that Asian people squat flat footed like little kids do, while baseball catchers squat rather on the balls of their feet, probably to be more agile while catching the ball. So Asian people basically "hang down" from their lower legs with their knees almost above their feet and no tension on the femoral muscles which they don't need as for them it's a very stational position and baseball catchers rather sit "on" their lower legs with a lot of tension in their femoral muscles and their knees before their feet which combined puts a lot of pressure on the knees.
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