Is MMA the Pinnacle of Combat Sports?
Mixed martial arts is considered by many to be the pinnacle of combat sports because it combines the elements of boxing, kickboxing, wrestling, and grappling. But the reality is that MMA training often leads to a watering down of each discipline and an overall loss of technique. This can be very apparent in the stand-up game, where many fighters could improve their strikes substantially by internalizing a few boxing basics.
Protect the Chin: Keep the Hands Up and the Chin In
Keeping the hands up and the chin down is one of boxing’s most fundamental lessons. One clean shot on the chin and it’s lights out. Many high-profile MMA fights have ended because a fighter came out with their unprotected chin on display. Rampage Jackson’s KO victory over Chuck Liddell? Boxers around the world are still shaking their heads.
Move in Circles
The typical beginner reacts to being hit by moving straight back away from the attack. That leads to one place – jammed into the corner, ropes, or cage and absorbing more punishment. Experienced fighters move in circles so that they’re constantly stepping out of their opponent’s line of attack and always keeping an escape route open.
Never Be Flatfooted
Footwork is one of the most important elements of the stand up game. Landing punches and dodging attacks requires mobility, something a flatfooted fighter doesn’t have. Staying light and on the balls of the feet enables explosive movements and quick changes of direction.
Speed Before Strength: Always Use Clean, Short, Sharp Techniques
Speed is the predominant factor in generating punching power. A fast, clean punch packs more power than a slower, heavier one. Any introductory physics textbook will tell you that the formula for kinetic energy is 1/2 mass multiplied by velocity squared. In layman’s terms, doubling the speed of a punch will quadruple the power behind it.
Use Straight-Line Punches on the Outside
There’s a reason that overhand haymakers aren’t a common boxing technique – good boxers see them from a mile away and will dodge or block almost every time. On the outside, it’s the straight-line punches – the jab and the cross – that are most effective because they’re quick to reach their target and leave the opponent with less time to react.
Uppercuts and Hooks at Close Range
The curving punches like hooks and (especially) uppercuts are most effective at close range when the fighters are locked up and there’s less distance to cover. The hook can also be used on the outside, but with correct technique. A hook shouldn’t be a large swinging motion, rather it travels in a straight line until the very end of the technique, when it quickly curves in towards its target.
Strike From the Hips
Ask any boxer where their striking power comes from and they’ll give the same answer – from the hips. It’s the basis of the famous “Joe Louis hip swivel”. Watch a boxer’s lower body – every punch is accompanied by a hip twist in the direction of the punch. Good strikers don’t just punch with the arm and shoulder muscles, they punch with their whole body.
Power is Rooted in the Feet
A fighter’s feet are his foundation. They provide the purchase point for making the swiveling motion with the hips. For maximum power, both feet should be set solidly (but not flatfooted). Boxing trainers often talk about “squashing the bug” when throwing a punch. This refers to the twisting motion of the ball of the foot on the floor, which provides that extra bit of power – enough to turn a sting into a knockout.
MMA Injuries: Basic Exercises For Shoulder Rehabilitation
One of the most common injuries in the sport of MMA is a shoulder injury. Famous UFC fighter Cain Velasquez is an example of the impacts shoulder injuries can have on MMA athletes. Cain tore his rotater cuff against brock lesnar in their famous championship and a few more times after that. Shoulder injuries are very common amongst combat sports athletes and be a big detriment towards a fighters career.
Shoulder rehabilitation as with other types of rehabilitation, focuses in the restoration of the normal functions before the impairment. For example, if you were throwing big looping over right hands before an injury but now have a sharp pain each time you raise your arm, it looks to bring you back to your original function. An exercise program or therapy prescribed to the patient signals the start of the rehabilitation stage. However, medical experts said that rehabilitation actually begins from the time the patient has been seen by a health care practitioner, and ends right after the patient’s release.
There are two very common injuries to the shoulder that necessitates shoulder rehabilitation among MMA fighters. These are: Subacromial Syndromes and Shoulder Instability. The first lesion means a rotator cuff tear which is characterized by frequent shoulder pains. The aim of shoulder rehabilitation for this particular injury is to bring back the muscular balances between the elevators and depressors. A person suffering from instability of the shoulder would need shoulder rehabilitation as it will restore the muscular balance between internal and external rotators of the shoulder.
Reducing activity, compressing the injured shoulder, elevating the injured shoulder above heart level, and taking in medications like anti-inflammatory, are only some of the things that comprise the dislocated shoulder rehabilitation. Its objectives include strengthening the muscles, increasing flexibility, and establish painless movements. Extreme injury cases however, would mean avoidance of activities that would cause shoulder pains.
There are shoulder rehabilitation exercises that have to be done on both sides of the body to maintain balance. Doing these exercises can increase the strength of both shoulders and may prevent the occurrence of injury to either one of the shoulder. Some of the shoulder rehabilitation exercises that you may be required by your doctor to practice are: shrugs, bicep curls, triceps curls, chest raises, saws, pendulum swings, shoulder rotation, shoulder flexion, towel stretch, and flexed elbow pull. Your doctor may prescribe other exercises instead of or on top of the ones mentioned earlier depending on the nature and intensity of the injury. There are also exercises that don’t necessarily require movements from the injured area, some of which are: stationary bicycle, walking, jogging, and swimming (if pain is tolerable).
Shoulder rehabilitation and therapy should be based on the degree of injury that the MMA fighter has and its response to the treatments. Exercises and physical activities should all be done according to the doctor’s prescriptions for a more successful shoulder rehabilitation for fighters. It’s important to take time off during training if the fighter experience shoulder instability or shoulder pain.
When It comes to MMA athletes, nutrition plays a big part and one common supplement MMA athletes use is whey protein. Since the discovery of whey protein as a primary supplement to help in the development of body muscle, a lot of health buffs can’t seem to get enough of their own supply which also takes place among MMA athletes in the mma community. Many MMA fighters seems to be scampering to get his or her whey protein supplements, especially those who are looking to bulk up and put muscle on before a fight. Although protein can be derived in common food groups such as fish, milk, eggs, cheese and beef, increasing intake on such food will also mean an increase in weight, which a lot of MMA fighters should avoid if they are looking to make weight before a fight.
Luckily enough, there are whey protein isolates that enables people to increase the protein levels in the body without having to hoard on protein rich food products. Since mma fighters engage in strenuous physical activities and exercises that literally tare their muscles down and rebuilding them, it is important that they should have adequate supply of whey protein in the body. The best time to take whey protein would greatly vary from one person to another, largely depending on the person’s diet. However, here are three of the best times to take whey protein and ensure maximum efficacy:
Right After Every Training– since whey protein has large amounts of amino acids, it is highly critical to take higher amounts at this point because the human body undergoes into the cycle of recovery and growth right after a full body workout.
First Thing in the Morning – this is the best time to take whey protein since the protein levels are down after long periods of sleep.
Before Bedtime – taking whey protein supplement right before sleeping would significantly prevent the breakdown of protein that would naturally occur during sleep. If you are not entirely focused on building muscle, the protein breakdown would be fine. But if you’re goal is to build muscle mass, you would naturally want to lessen the protein loss in you body. Hence, it is the best time to take whey protein in order to slow down your protein metabolism while asleep.
However, it is important to note that like everything else, too much consumption of whey protein can be detrimental to the human body. As the saying goes, too much of a good thing can be bad and the same applies with protein supplements believe it or not. To ensure that your intake is properly absorbed in the body, you have to know when the best time to take whey protein is. You don’t need to increase your consumption of whey protein but instead concentrate more on making sure that the protein you take will not go to waste.
Many MMA fighters and BJJ practitioners incorporate yoga into their training regime which is not surprising when you look at the benefits it brings. Yoga has shown to help athletes in a variety of ways such as flexibility, strength, endurance and much more. Many famous MMA fighters like Diego Sanchez incorporate yoga into their training due to the benefits it brings. That said, most athletes practice yoga but are oblivious of its roots and the major functions which is what we will quickly cover in this article.
Derived from the Sanskrit word “yuj” meaning “to yoke.” yoga is a group of primordial religious practice where its roots can be traced in India. Among the six institutions of philosophy in Hindu, this is most of the time paired with Samkhya which is considered to be the oldest of the theoretical systems in the country. This ancient spiritual custom is also central to Buddhism and Jainism as well as with other established faiths.
There are actually four major paths of this primordial religious practice namely Karma (action), Jnana (knowledge), Bhakti (devotion) and Raja (meditation).
Karma is founded on the teachings of the holy book of Hinduism, Bhagavad Gita which presents a summary of the process. This classification of yoga concentrates on the proper observance of one’s responsibility yet not expecting a reward in return. Karma believes that a person can only reach salvation through doing duties without looking into one’s pleasure for the delight of whom they thought as supreme.
Jnana is frequently interpreted as wisdom of the true person. Among the many schools of Hinduism, Vedanta deems that being able to recognize Brahman which is the transcendent reality of the divine ground of everything in this world, as one’s own is already an achievement of this classification of yoga. Jnana has four divisions such as Viveka (discrimination), Vairagya (dispassion), Shad- sampat (control) and Mumushutva (longing).
Bhakti is identified to be the simplest kind of devanagari in arriving at the point of moksha (liberation). This classification of yoga abides in fostering dedication to god. In Bhagavata Purana, another holy book of Hinduism, this ancient spiritual custom is a state of utopia that transcends the level of realization. Bhakti implies an agape kind of love towards god as a holistic individual that integrates several universal principles
Raja is also referred to as ashtanga since there are eight facets that one must focus on namely yama, niyama, asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and samadhi. This classification of yoga is principally concerned with the nurturing of the mind by way of meditation in order to acquaint one’s self with veracity and emancipation. Raja comprises the “royal road” to utter bliss that ushers to satisfaction.
Today, yoga is known all over the globe as a means of attaining sound physical health. The most popular nowadays is hatha, a technique of this primordial religious practice that will prepare students for a more advance degree, which is colloquially dubbed as exercise. Hatha is the technique most prominent in MMA and BJJ due to the benefits associated with it.
Running is one of the best exercises for any combat sports whether it be boxing or Mixed Martial Arts. Mike Tyson, one of the best boxers to ever grace the sport of boxing would wake up every morning at 5am and would run for miles. When asked “Why are you running so early?”, Tyson’s reply was ” Because I know that while I train , my opponent is still sleeping”. Many other high level combat sport athletes run which shows the importance of it. Here are a few tips to get you running faster and longer which in the end will improve your conditioning.
1. Take some rest days between intense training whether it be MMA training or regular weight lifting. Doing so will give your body ample time to recover energy and reestablish that muscle stamina. Some athletes have a week or two of rest in between days of hard workouts. For relatively easy workouts, they schedule at least one day-off.
2. Mind your pace. Running long-distance is less about running fast, but is more about covering as many miles as you can. To be able to do this, you need to conserve your energy and run slow during the first few miles. Change your pace as you progress and approach the finish line.
3. Work on improving your speed and the distance you cover. Allot two to three days of fast running per week. There will be times, however, that your body won’t feel like working at a faster speed. Don’t push, as your body is trying to recover energy.
4. Increase your mileage. Successful distance athletes increase their mileage at a gradual pace. Some of them add two to three miles after every week of training, while others have an easier approach, only adding a few more strides at the end of every run. But because your body works differently, you can design or look for a training plan that can help you increase your mileage at a proper intensity.
5. Put some diversity. To take the monotony out of your training, make sure to run different routes from time to time, run at different paces in a single session, and run at different paces on given days. The thing is, because running is most likely the same each day, you need to make it a little more exciting, something you always want to look forward to.
6. Have a running partner at certain points of your run. It’s okay to run solo, some runners even prefer it, but without someone to talk to the entire run, training gets impossibly boring. Try to catch up with someone, or agree to meet with a fellow runner halfway through the run. Of course, you have to be willing to change your pace to encourage small talks.
7. Listen to music. Long distance running is a mental activity as much as it is a physical challenge, so you need to get motivated and inspired to keep your body moving. Music does it well by keeping your mind off the physical discomforts of running and relaxing your mental state. During a run, bring an mp3 player with you and load it up with inspirational or your favorite music. Make sure your player has enough battery life to last the entire run.
8. Bring energy foods with you. Not only will they pump up your energy level, they also will give you something else to do other than running. It is also wise to have water or energy drink to keep you hydrated during your training for long distance running.
Running is important for athletes and it should be included in your training regime.
Best Boxing Gloves For Women: Venum Challenger 2.0 Boxing Gloves
One pair of gloves that stood high above the rest for womens boxing gloves is the Venum Challenger 2.0 Boxing Gloves. These are hands down one of the best boxing gloves for women and the popularity and high reviews it has gotten over the years is completely justified. These gloves can be used for training and sparring purposes for women in mma, boxing, kickboxing, muaythai and any other hand to hand combat sport.
The womens boxing glove is manufactured and produced with a high end leather material that is very impressive. The material is some of the most durable construction I have seen and will last you for years to come. In terms of knuckle support and protection, the glove features a triple density cushioned foam that does an exceptional job at absorbing shock from all punching angles thrown. In terms of wrist support and wrist protection, the venum women’s boxing gloves comes with a large velcro enclosure that keeps your hand and wrist safely in place. The design of the venum challanger is simply eye candy and looks top notch. The classic venum logo and strips is imprinted well into the gloves and the pink colouring used stands out in a very good way. In terms of the price your paying for the gloves, this where the venum challenger shines. Another reason why these gloves are considered the best boxing gloves for women is that the gloves are priced exceptionally well for the quality you are getting and the price to performance ratio in this glove is what makes this a steel and one of the best boxing gloves in the market.
The venum challenger 2.0 is available in 8oz, 10oz, 12oz, 14oz and 16oz. When which size glove to go with, make sure you know what you are using the gloves for. A large pair of gloves will protect your hands much better and also be easier on your opponent. A smaller pair of gloves will offer less protection on your hands but will not weigh as heavy. The only cons we could find with this glove is that the bright pink design may not be for everyone. The good thing is that the challenger 2.0 is offered in a variety of colours and is not mutually exclusive to pink only. These gloves are geared towards training gloves and may not be suited for any competition or amateur matches. Based on our assessment and review of the venum challenger 2.0, it is safe to say that this is one of best boxing gloves for women who are looking to do bag work or sparring work.
Best Boxing Gloves