3 Great MMA Exercises for Weight Loss and Strength Training

A cage fighter reveals the top 3 strength training exercises that optimize weight loss and put you on the path to getting the body of a MMA fighter.

If you want to speed up your weight loss and take your strength training regime to the next level, you should train like a Mixed Martial Artist. MMA fighters need to be at a fitness level that few other sports require. MMA demands core strength, upper body strength, lower body strength, and crazy good aerobic, anaerobic, and metabolic conditioning. Incorporate these three exercises into your workout routine and get fit fast.

1. Bear Crawls

As a MMA Fighter, I start out every workout with a series of dynamic stretches that include bear crawls. Don’t let the term “stretches” fool you. Although they are used as a warm-up, animal crawls are intense and will leave your muscles burning, making them a great strength training exercise.

There are several types of animal crawls, but let’s go over bear crawls. During your workout, you might only do bear crawls or transition from them to other animal crawls.

Step by Step Guide to Bear Crawls

First, you need a straight path about 20 feet long. The length depends on your fitness level- if you’re very fit (or think you’re very fit), make it longer. If you’re short on space, that’s fine too. Adjust the amount of bear crawls to compensate for your shorter floor space.

At the beginning of your path, start out with your palms on the ground, toes on the ground, and your knees off the ground. Your body should be in an upside-down V. Keeping this shape, crawl to the end of your path and back. Your left hand should move first, then your right foot, followed by your right hand, and so on.

Other great animal crawls include the crab walk, spiderman, frog hop, and duck walk.

2. Heavy Bag Slams

Heavy Bag Slams is another great strength training exercise that will also get your heart pumping for an exhausting cardio workout. This exercise mimics doing a body-slam take down. For this, you need a heavy bag. Put the bag on the ground.

Step-by-Step Guide to Heavy Bag Slams

Squat down and grab the bag around the middle, scooping your forearms under the bottom of the bag. Lift up the bag and immediately slam it down.

Don’t just drop the bag; try to slam it with as much power as you have. Take a deep breath, and begin again.

You’ll end up picking up and throwing the bag towards one side (probably your dominant side). Make sure you alternate sides every time, so that you don’t end up with bulging muscles on one side of your body and thin limbs on the other.

Related Article: Rhonda Rousey’s Diet: Eat Like a MMA Fighter, to Look like a MMA Fighter.

3. Sprawls

MMA fighters sprawl to avoid a takedown, but even if you are not training for a cage match, incorporating sprawls into your workout routine is a great way to improve your fitness, propel your weight loss, and enhance your strength training. Whether you’re hitting the heavy bag, running, or doing plyometrics, breaking up your routine to do sprawls takes your workout to a whole new level.

Step-by-Step Guide to Sprawls

To do a sprawl, shoot your legs backwards and bring your palms to the floor. As your hands hit the floor, your toes should hit the ground. Imagine you’re trying to throw your hips to the ground. If you’re working out on a soft mat, you actually want them to make contact. But, this is a terrible idea on any hard surface. On a hard surface, just let your hands and feet make contact, then drop your hips gently to the ground.

Your upper body should absorb the impact of the drop. Allow your elbows to bend and let your chest touch the floor. Immediately, pop back up.

You can do sets of 10, 20, or more sprawls, or alternate between sprawling and whatever exercise you’re already doing.

Training to look like an MMA fighter? Learn how to kick like an MMA fighter too! > >

Get the Body of a MMA Fighter

There are hundreds of exercises that MMA fighters use to lose weight, gain muscle and get fit for their next fight. Whether you are training for a bout or just want to incorporate effective exercises into your workout, try out some MMA exercises, and get MMA fit quickly.

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