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Bodyshots for Core Training

Don’t know if this qualifies as an overthinking thread but what the hell. I’ve heard some thais do partner drills where one holds his hands behind his neck while standing and the other kicks him in the body. They do this to prepare the body for the kicks that get through, and I have heard that some boxer use this drill with body shots as well.

How do the organs respond to that kind of training? You are going to get hit in the body while sparring anyways, so is it just flat out stupid to put some extra punishment to your organs since I’d assume that no matter how ripped abs you have they can’t absorb all the punishment and I have no idea if you can train your organs to take more punishment or get ‘stronger’ by letting someone hit them but common sense says its probably not a good idea.

The thing is they are simply much more fun than doing endless sets of crunches and planks and probably prepare you better for tensing your muscles at the right moment, so considering one does some sort of sparring at least once a week is it advisable to substitute some of the boring crunches with this type of work or is it flat out stupid? How much beating do the organs take if you don’t go full power and how quickly do they recover?

Not over thinking, just ill thinking.
For conditioning sure, but for core strength, forget it.

Keep on planking. Keep on twisting. Keep on crunching. These will make your core stronger.

As for the punching, not pleasant at first, but once you get used to the pain, it’s all lovely jubbly. Internal damage? Nope, as long the abdominal muscles are tensed during the punching. I used to enjoy this on a regular basis about 8-9 years ago (while crunching or standing). I’m okay. No long term internal damage.

I still, occasionally, ask some guy to punch me in the stomach repeatedly for 30 seconds because it turns me on, and I hardly feel nothing… but that’s a different story all together…

Time better spent on your defense IMO

For starters, your partner isn’t going to be hitting you even close to 80%, shit probably not even 50%, because if he did you would last about maybe 30 seconds until he hit you on the liver and boom you drop like a sack of potatoes. No amount of conditioning will prepare you for the pain of an accurate liver shot, it’s just an extremely sensitive organ and the pain is debilitating. I did all of the conditioning drills, medicine ball to the gut etc, none of it prepared me when I sparred against guys with years more experience than me and they hit me with a liver shot.

What did help however, was those sparring sessions teaching me how to defend my body better. I actually favor switching to a philly shell from time to time because it’s very easy to protect your body while setting up counter shots.

Conditioning shins works because it deadens the nerves on the area and strengthens the bone, which is already quite thick. However I don’t see this same principle applying to your abdominal because it’s muscle tissue, not bone, and unless you fight with your abs flexed 100% of the time (which is silly) i just don’t see how it’s going to help.

[quote]DarkNinjaa wrote:
Keep on planking. Keep on twisting. Keep on crunching. These will make your core stronger.

As for the punching, not pleasant at first, but once you get used to the pain, it’s all lovely jubbly. Internal damage? Nope, as long the abdominal muscles are tensed during the punching. I used to enjoy this on a regular basis about 8-9 years ago (while crunching or standing). I’m okay. No long term internal damage.

I still, occasionally, ask some guy to punch me in the stomach repeatedly for 30 seconds because it turns me on, and I hardly feel nothing… but that’s a different story all together…

[/quote]

Flexing abs can have the opposite effect altogether and send more shock through your internals. There are funky absorption techniques that come with time where you subconsciously learn to roll your abdomen with punches so the shock dissipates before it even goes internal. Same with rolling your whole body with punches.

As for core strength, the best way is to imagine your core as the pivot point and proceed by putting as much torque as you can on that point. Torque = force x distance so the longer the lever the more torque applied.
Many people can crunch and twist forever and mistakenly think they have great cores. Put 60 kg above their head and get them to walk and they tremble and flex around like grass in the wind.

Your core consists of far more than your abdomen and obliques. Your hips, glutes and quads matter more as do your psoas and illiopsoas muscles which barely respond to pilates or yoga like techniques. Hold a barbell above your head and perform squats or lunges and notice how flimsy you feel. If so, then get to work on training in that fashion and loosening up with stretching to strengthen your core.

Very nice posts!

You def. can overdo bodyshot conditioning.
What I like more is semi-sparring where you have your partner close and only whacking the body is allowed.
You can clinch and trap and set up any technique you want, but it has to be to the body.

When my teacher was younger his teacher would have his students do something real similar called Sanchin. Later on in life he developed pancreatic problems that he blamed on all the pounding he took doing Sanchin.

Through conditioning the muscles and learning how to breath, you can develop your ability to get hit without knocking the wind out of you. One can develop quite an ability to take a punch or kick. I’ve had ribs broken or fractured without knocking the wind out of me or taking me out of the fight. But you are still going to have the energy of a blow transfer into your internal organs, which aren’t designed to be repeatedly pounded on.

Because the injury is internal you are not going to notice it unless it is serious. But you still can get accumulated trauma that added together does damage. ie With bruising you can get blood clots. Blood clots can obstruct blood flow, this in turn can cause tissue death.

So if an organ still has some bruising and swelling from a previous training session or a fight and you blast it again in the same spot it probably won’t be good for the long term health of that organ. Which can pull down your overall health until eventually you are to shot through to continue training or competing.

Great posts indeed, I really appriciate the ammount of information you all have and care to share. Guess I’ll just keep on going with training the core and doing my sparring, thanks everyone and keep em coming if you got more to share! :wink:

[quote]humble wrote:
Flexing abs can have the opposite effect altogether and send more shock through your internals. There are funky absorption techniques that come with time where you subconsciously learn to roll your abdomen with punches so the shock dissipates before it even goes internal. Same with rolling your whole body with punches.

As for core strength, the best way is to imagine your core as the pivot point and proceed by putting as much torque as you can on that point. Torque = force x distance so the longer the lever the more torque applied.
Many people can crunch and twist forever and mistakenly think they have great cores. Put 60 kg above their head and get them to walk and they tremble and flex around like grass in the wind.

Your core consists of far more than your abdomen and obliques. Your hips, glutes and quads matter more as do your psoas and illiopsoas muscles which barely respond to pilates or yoga like techniques. Hold a barbell above your head and perform squats or lunges and notice how flimsy you feel. If so, then get to work on training in that fashion and loosening up with stretching to strengthen your core.
[/quote]

Hmm… well thank you! :slight_smile: Not that I don’t know what the core is and how to strengthen it. I squat and overhead squat on the regular, dang it! :stuck_out_tongue:

My bad for saying crunching was great to keep the core stronger. And by twisting, I was more visualizing cable wood chop exercises and performing scorpion twists on a stability ball… Meh, I just lumped planking, twisting and crunching all together. Couldn’t be bothered to expand on that. I knew someone would pick on that line. Hahaha!

And as for the flexing, I’m tempted to agree with you but years ago, I used to tense a lot until I subconsciously stopped doing it and could tolerate the pain and impact. Never required a stay at the hospital due to internal damage etc…

Lol… no malice intended ninja… jus’ sayin’

“Core” is more of a concept than an anatomical term.

What humble is describing is that a “strong core” really requires a high degree of co-ordination between a bunch of different muscles and even joints. Like most co-ordinated movements it is position and function specific. So a “strong core” for lifting may come unhinged during tennis.

Muscular strength is also hugely important otherwise the coordination thing doesn’t work out.

So exercises to make the muscles themselves stronger=good.

Exercises to make your muscles work the way you need them to=good.

The deal is that in order for something to be functional, we have to have a defined function and use that to evaluate performance. If your function is to play tennis on the international level, a shit ton of what humble does in the gym is as non-functional as it gets. On the other hand if you are getting into the ring…

Regards,

Robert A

[quote]Robert A wrote:
“Core” is more of a concept than an anatomical term.

What humble is describing is that a “strong core” really requires a high degree of co-ordination between a bunch of different muscles and even joints. Like most co-ordinated movements it is position and function specific. So a “strong core” for lifting may come unhinged during tennis.

Muscular strength is also hugely important otherwise the coordination thing doesn’t work out.

So exercises to make the muscles themselves stronger=good.

Exercises to make your muscles work the way you need them to=good.

The deal is that in order for something to be functional, we have to have a defined function and use that to evaluate performance. If your function is to play tennis on the international level, a shit ton of what humble does in the gym is as non-functional as it gets. On the other hand if you are getting into the ring…

Regards,

Robert A[/quote]

being the combat section, I assumed all talk was referring to lawn bowls…:frowning:

[quote]humble wrote:
Lol… no malice intended ninja… jus’ sayin’[/quote]

No problemo…lol

[quote]humble wrote:

[quote]DarkNinjaa wrote:
Keep on planking. Keep on twisting. Keep on crunching. These will make your core stronger.

As for the punching, not pleasant at first, but once you get used to the pain, it’s all lovely jubbly. Internal damage? Nope, as long the abdominal muscles are tensed during the punching. I used to enjoy this on a regular basis about 8-9 years ago (while crunching or standing). I’m okay. No long term internal damage.

I still, occasionally, ask some guy to punch me in the stomach repeatedly for 30 seconds because it turns me on, and I hardly feel nothing… but that’s a different story all together…

[/quote]

Flexing abs can have the opposite effect altogether and send more shock through your internals. There are funky absorption techniques that come with time where you subconsciously learn to roll your abdomen with punches so the shock dissipates before it even goes internal. Same with rolling your whole body with punches.

As for core strength, the best way is to imagine your core as the pivot point and proceed by putting as much torque as you can on that point. Torque = force x distance so the longer the lever the more torque applied.
Many people can crunch and twist forever and mistakenly think they have great cores. Put 60 kg above their head and get them to walk and they tremble and flex around like grass in the wind.

Your core consists of far more than your abdomen and obliques. Your hips, glutes and quads matter more as do your psoas and illiopsoas muscles which barely respond to pilates or yoga like techniques. Hold a barbell above your head and perform squats or lunges and notice how flimsy you feel. If so, then get to work on training in that fashion and loosening up with stretching to strengthen your core.
[/quote]
Are you the only one here that knows this ?

I’ve been taking hits like this for a long time. I’m not sure how much it has helped my conditioning vs. not doing it, as I do body hardening as a supplement to (not a replacement for) working my “core” muscles. What I do know is that it takes the shock out of getting hit.

A full round of body hardening for me includes shins, inside and outside leg kicks, inside and outside forearms, hooks and straight shots to the body. Alternating with a partner I’ll bang off about a hundred hits to each target point, 60-70% power, no pads. You may want to start lower power and reps, it’s supposed to leave you sore but not “I’m really hurt” level of pain.

As Sifu said though, it’s not without risk. Organ damage is real, and I have been hospitalized with a perforated spleen. Proper hydration can help mitigate organ damage, so make sure you’re hitting the water.

My opinion on body shots is that training to take them is of very limited value to a fighter. My personal experience, which may not be the same as for others, is that the body shots your ‘abz’ are able to take are the ones your defense should be stopping, or that won’t really hurt you anyway.

No amount of standing around being punched predictably square on in your 6 pack will prepare you for the shot you don’t see coming that evades your defense and lands on your liver, kidneys, or solar plexus. Try standing there with a partner and have them throw bombs at those areas. See if they can’t still put you on your arse every time 6 months from now.

My view is that your best bet is never to waste time learning to take punches, you’ll take them anyway in sparing. Spend every spare moment learning to avoid being hit, or to roll with the shot and set up your counters.

[quote]therickuss wrote:

[quote]humble wrote:

[quote]DarkNinjaa wrote:
Keep on planking. Keep on twisting. Keep on crunching. These will make your core stronger.

As for the punching, not pleasant at first, but once you get used to the pain, it’s all lovely jubbly. Internal damage? Nope, as long the abdominal muscles are tensed during the punching. I used to enjoy this on a regular basis about 8-9 years ago (while crunching or standing). I’m okay. No long term internal damage.

I still, occasionally, ask some guy to punch me in the stomach repeatedly for 30 seconds because it turns me on, and I hardly feel nothing… but that’s a different story all together…

[/quote]

Flexing abs can have the opposite effect altogether and send more shock through your internals. There are funky absorption techniques that come with time where you subconsciously learn to roll your abdomen with punches so the shock dissipates before it even goes internal. Same with rolling your whole body with punches.

As for core strength, the best way is to imagine your core as the pivot point and proceed by putting as much torque as you can on that point. Torque = force x distance so the longer the lever the more torque applied.
Many people can crunch and twist forever and mistakenly think they have great cores. Put 60 kg above their head and get them to walk and they tremble and flex around like grass in the wind.

Your core consists of far more than your abdomen and obliques. Your hips, glutes and quads matter more as do your psoas and illiopsoas muscles which barely respond to pilates or yoga like techniques. Hold a barbell above your head and perform squats or lunges and notice how flimsy you feel. If so, then get to work on training in that fashion and loosening up with stretching to strengthen your core.
[/quote]
Are you the only one here that knows this ?[/quote]

No, why?

Slightly off topic, but thinking back I used to be quite precious about getting hit in the face. One thing I did to condition myself out of it was to stand in front of the floor to ceiling bal and whack it, then let it come back and hit me in the head. Sounds retarded, is retarded, but did take away some of the fear of being hit in the face, and helped condition my nose to getting smacked.

[quote]LondonBoxer123 wrote:
Slightly off topic, but thinking back I used to be quite precious about getting hit in the face. One thing I did to condition myself out of it was to stand in front of the floor to ceiling bal and whack it, then let it come back and hit me in the head. Sounds retarded, is retarded, but did take away some of the fear of being hit in the face, and helped condition my nose to getting smacked.[/quote]

It does sound a little retarded (not full retard, mind you) and the visual is pretty awesome. I can see the HBO inspirational training video now: stark black and white, young fighter alone in a deserted old gym, dust motes floating in the lone shaft of light. Head down, shoulders hunched, hood of his battered oversized sweatshirt up revealing only the hard, determined set of his jaw, he slowly begins to warm up. He’s on the balls of his feet bobbing, weaving. The music very gradually builds in intensity, the anticipation is heavy. He shadowboxes a little, slow at first then faster. The music builds. Then he steps up to the ball and whack-swing-bonk, takes it in the face. Then he does it again, and again.

In all seriousness though I’m sure it was helpful for getting over the whole “not in the face!” thing.

Haha, if only it were that glamorous. The only accurate bit was the old gym full of dust. I did find it quite handy for getting smacked and then trying to land a couple of punches on the ball as it went back. I do think it was quite a good drill for learning to get hit, and learning to hit back as a natural instinct.