T Nation

Strength Training for Martial Arts

I have been doing martial arts for 17 years now, and I’m only 27. I have always used the gym to supplement my MA. When in there I lifted weights, well moved weights from A to B and had some ok results. I’ve never been an overly muscular or strong guy. My heaviest was 94kg which was mostly muscle, but it has a tendency to fluctuate. I often move through weight categories for MA competitions. I have never had a proper routine and have realistically suffered for it.

No More.

I read an article discussing using the gym to develop strength by lifting for strength and leaving the sports specific training to when I actually train in the sport. I am planning on shifting my weight category to fight in the super heavyweights from middle heavyweight. That’s right I’m shooting for the Moon.

I have looked at a number of different programs and created one that is going to suit me. It is subject to change as I have only completed the Bench and Squat days. Take a look:

Dead:
A1) Power snatch 5 x 5
A2) Face pull 5 x 10
B) Dead lift 10 x 3
C) Snatch Grip Rack Pulls 1xF 10 rep-max
D) Kroc rows 4 x F
E1) Lower trap raises 3 x 10
E2) Rear delt flyes 3 x 10
F1) Ham raises
X1) calf raises
X2) Triceps pull downs

Bench:
A1) Flat bench up to heavy triple 70kg.
A2) Bent Over Row 55kg
B1) Dumbell incline 3 x 10 15kg
B2) 1-arm row 3 x 10 25kg
C1) Flyes 3 x 10 10kg
C2) Rear Delt Flies 3 x 10 12.5kg
X1) calf raises
X2) Triceps pull downs

Press:
A1) Push press - up to heavy double
A2) Weighted pull-ups (sets of 5)
B1) Kneeling Over Head Press 5 x 10
B2) Wide-grip pull-ups 5 x 10
C1) Rear delt raise
C2) Lateral raise
C3) Front raise
X1) calf raises
X2) Triceps pull downs

Squat:
A) Good mornings 5x10 30kg
B1) Front squat up to a heavy double 80kg
B2) Face pulls 27.5kg
C1) Back squats 10 x 3 70kg
D1) Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat 5 x 10 20kg
D2) 1-leg Romanian Dead Lift 5 x 10 36kg
X1) Triceps pull downs

Press:

Push Press with Pull ups between sets:
7x40
7x45
7x47.5
5x50
5x55
4x57.5

Kneeling OHP with Wide grip pull ups between sets:
10x35
10x35
10x35
8x35
7x35

3 sets:
Rear delt raise:10x8
Lateral raise:10x6
Front raise:10x6

Calf Raises:
3xf - didn’t count

3 sets:
Triceps pull downs: 10x25
Face pulls: 10x27.5

That’s a lot of volume dude. Did you get that from somewhere or come up with it on your own? Since you’re trying to gain and getter better at your sport simultaneously, why not run something a li’l lower on volume like 5/3/1 or something?

Yeah, I’m finding this. I started with the 5/3/1 theory and wet on from there. What I’m finding is, for the weight I’m lifting, I’m wasting a lot of time and energy. I have faith in this program to work but I’m going to switch this back to pure basics.

I am new to this kind of lifting and should definitely build a stronger foundation before I move onto such a wide and varied program.

So my new thoughts is not just far away from my original it’s in a new galaxy. As follows:
Workout 1:

A) Squat ? 3 x 5
A1) Pullups
B) Bench Press ? 3 x 5
B2) Wide grip pullups
C) Deadlift ? 1 x F
D)Calf raises

Workout 2:

A) Squat ? 3 x 5
A1) Pullups
B) Press (Overhead press) ? 3 x 5
B2) Wide grip pullups
C) *Power Clean ? 5 x 3
D)Calf raises

I’ll just alternate Workout1 and Workout2. I am going to run this simple plan until the new year and se how my body has responded. I will then look at adding new lifts. This is taken from Mark Rippetoe’s idea.

Tomorrow, the new workout begins. Workout 1
A) Squat ? 3 x 5
A1) Pullups
B) Bench Press ? 3 x 5
B2) Wide grip pullups
C) Deadlift ? 1 x F
D)Calf

I have DOMS from a squat session four days ago. Let’s hope they’re gone for tomorrow and don’t affect my lifts.

DOMS or no DOMS I finally went.

Squat:
5x85
5x85
5x85
5x85
5x85

Flat Bench:
5x55
5x55
5x55
5x55
5x55

Dead Lift:
5x100
5x100
5x100
5x100
5x100

15 hours since my last gym session and I’m back at it. Feeling awesome!

Squat:
5x85
5x85
5x85
5x85
5x85

Overhead Press:
5x55
5x55
5x55
5x55
5x55

Power Clean
5x50
5x50
5x50
5x50
5x50

Calf Raises:
Fx90
Fx90
Fx90

Triceps Pull downs:
10x27.5
10x27.5
10x27.5

Squat:
5x90
5x90
5x90
5x90
5x90

Flat Bench:
5x60
5x60
5x60

Dead Lift:
5x100
5x100
5x100
5x100
5x100

Pull-ups:
10xMe
10xMe
8xMe

Calf Raises:
Fx90
Fx90

Squat:
10x20|5x60|5x70|5x75|5x80|
5x90
5x90
5x90

OHP:
5x16 DB x2|5x16 DB x2
5x55
5x55
5x55
5x55
5x55

Power Clean:
5x55
5x55
5x55
5x55
5x55

Pull ups

Triceps Pulldowns:
10x27.5
10x27.5
10x27.5

It appears the plan is working. I am creeping the weight up on most of my lifts.

Goblet Squat:
10x20

Squat:
5x60|5x80|5x90
5x95
5x95
5x95
5x95
5x95

Flat Bench:
5x50|5x50|5x60
5x65
5x65
5x65

Sumo Deadlift:
5x60
5x80
5x90

Deadlift:
5x100
5x110
5x110
5x110
5x110
5x110 (Second rep had poor technique)

So Saturday and Sunday and went for 4km runs around Wales. It was a nice change.

Today I lifted like a mother’. Or at least it was heavy for me…

Squat:
5x60|5x80|5x90
5x100
5x100
5x100
5x100
5x100 (PB)

OHP:
10x40|5x50|5x60
5x70
5x70
5x70
4x70 (That bastard would not go up) (PB anyway)

Power Clean:
5x40|5x50
5x60
5x60
5x60
5x60
5x60 (PB)

Pullups:
2x8

Biceps Curls:
10x20
5x20 (Just giving the ladies what they love)