Conditioning for mixed martial arts is different than, say conditioning for a sport or just general body conditioning. MMA has it’s own rigors that your body needs to be able to overcome. In this article, we’re going to talk about what MMA requires of your body and how you can get the right conditioning for mixed martial arts,which will put you far, far ahead of the competition.
The first thing we need to think about is what is required of a mixed martial arts combatant. Well, basically three things, anaerobic stamina, muscular endurance, and flexibility. So, your workout should address these three concerns. Let’s talk about each area in turn.
The first aspect of elite conditioning for MMA is anaerobic stamina. You need the ability to go hard for only a few minutes, but you don’t want to give out of gas during that time. So, training that involves lower level steady state outputs of physical energy like running five miles are not productive. What you need is something that mimics the dynamics of a fight, and that would be sprinting or working out on the heavy bag.
The next important aspect of conditioning for mixed martial arts is muscular endurance. You need the ability to do strenuous activity for brief periods of time. Hitting hard, grappling hard. That sort of thing. Although having big muscles is better than having no muscle at all, what you really need are muscles that are pound for pound very strong. Basically, you want that dense, lean look.
Traditional weightlifting in the gym is not going to give you this. What will help you more are bodyweight type exercises. Oddly enough, these are the exercises you did in elementary school, push ups, pull ups, and sit ups are some of the many bodyweight exercises that will give you the stamina and muscular endurance to get through a fight.
Finally, there’s flexibility. You need this to protect yourself, and also to grapple effectively. Again, what works here is not the traditional thirty second stretch. Dynamic stretches work better.
So, anaerobic training, bodyweight exercises, and dynamic stretching are what you need for elite conditioning for mixed martial arts.

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