In order to be a consistent winner in MMA, you have to take on a totally different outlook than what is the “norm” of other sports training.
Practically all of your power sports rely on just that… power. Power sport athletes spend hours at the gym bulking up and giving their all to press or power lift more than anyone else. Most sports, too, tend to highlight those who have their physiques sculpted to perfection and look good in PR shots. Even in the MMA, it’s a common misperception that the athletes who “look” the most in-shape are the best performers.
Those duking it out in the cage don’t necessarily need bulging, toned muscles or pretty bodies. What MMA champions need is strength, power and agility. For a combatant to win in this sport, personal potential has to be harnessed and performance needs to be the main focus of a training program.
Check out these five MMA training tips that go against traditional sports training rules:
Control Your Weight with a High Performance Diet
As a power athlete, you should know and understand that up to 60% of your calorie reserves come from carbohydrates. Therefore, ignore all the low-carb trumpeting going on and discard the practice of crash dieting with prolonged sessions of cardio in order to make weight, both of which can lead to energy loss and dehydration.
Instead, build your diet around good nutrition and a high intake of carbs which will give your body what it needs during training, recuperation and competition. When you reduce your workout sessions, simply reduce your carb intake. Remember, if you fail to provide your body with the proper nutrition, you will also fail as an MMA competitor.
Recognize and Increase the Source of Your Power Punch
Research of MMA fighters has determined the source of champion power punches.
The majority of a successful fighter’s power is generated from their extended back leg. In comparison, less successful fighters use the rotation of their trunk and extended arm to deliver a blow.
Therefore, training for maximum power punches should move away from the traditional workout of, say, a boxer. It should, instead, focus on the extension of the hips, knees and ankles and the muscles controlling them.
Lower the Priority on Tradition Strength Exercises
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, many athletes train for power and MMA athletes aren’t excluded. Giving a lot of attention to power lifting may make for impressive muscle mass, but it does little to assist the winning MMA fighter.
Lift exercises take approximately two seconds to complete. An MMA fighter strike happens in less than 300 milliseconds. If your muscles are trained to respond at peak force in two seconds then you can see the disadvantage it will give you in the cage.
Adjust your MMA training to focus more time and effort on those exercises that will release your full power in the shortest possible time. This will make a huge difference in the success of your performance during competition by winning the MMA fighter .
Skip the Lengthy Cardio Sessions
Long cardio training sessions could do the MMA competitor more harm than good. Cardio workouts which are lengthy and steady maximize your aerobic energy systems, which is great if you’re a cross country runner.
However, MMA fights consist of explosive bouts that last from only a few to 90 seconds.
All that time and energy spent on an exercise bike or treadmill is basically spit in the wind and doesn’t do the fast paced, explosive cage fighter much good. Time is better spent on specific exercises which are focused on the needs of the sport such as sparring.
Incorporate the Science of Psychological Warfare
Another huge advantage that MMA participants can acquire is the use of sports psychology techniques. This is one of the contributing factors to the success of those who make it into the top ranks. The less successful combatants focus 100% on physical performance, but outlook, mood and desire constitute a winning edge for champions.
Proof of the effectiveness of scientific sports psychology can be seen in a 1995 study by Terry P and Slade A which revealed that outcome of combat sport bouts were accurately predicted in 92% of them just by analyzing the competitors’ moods prior to their respective competitions. The right mental attitude takes you farther than mere brawn.
If you’re looking to get an edge over your MMA fighter competitors, put these five MMA training tips to work for you and enjoy the results.