The monthly publication, Maximum Fitness, did a feature story on mixed martial arts champion and star Georges “Rush” St. Pierre for their November/December 2010 issue. In this issue they spoke to the champion about what makes him train so hard and push through his hard battles. Another main point of the story was the information of a training routine that St. Pierre uses to prepare for each competition.
Created by Jonathan Chaimberg, St. Pierre’s Strength and Conditioning coach, created a workout plan for the champion that does so many things vital for mixed martial artists. The seven-circuit workout plan will help you burn fat while building muscular strength and endurance. To go along with these boosts, you will also develop the power and explosiveness that fighters need at various points in competition. This program targets points across your whole body to give you the balance needed during training. This is very important because a muscular imbalance can lead to injuries during training.
The seven-circuits in this workout are as follows: eccentric hamstring curls, jump squats, walking lunges, standing one-arm rows, medicine ball smash, plyometric push-ups and hammer curl press. When using this training routine, complete each exercise one after the other; limiting the amount of time that you rest. Aim to complete ten repetitions before moving on to the next exercise. When you are finished with one round, give yourself a rest period of one minute before moving on to round number two. Once you find that you are comfortable doing two rounds of the circuit training, add additional rounds to continue to push yourself. Here is further information about each exercise:
Eccentric Hamstring Curls: Start on your knees with your hands crossed on your chest. Have your spotter or partner hold onto your legs so they stay in place. Slowly lower yourself to the ground until your chest is close to the ground, such as the lowered portion of a push up. Raise yourself back up to the starting position to move to the second rep.
Walking Lunge: Holding a dumbbell weight in both hands, step with your right foot and take a deep lunge. Lower your body down until your knee is close to the ground, however do not allow your knee to touch the floor. Raise your body back up to the starting position, with both of your feet side by side. Complete ten repetitions on both legs.
Jump Squat: Start with your feet shoulder width apart and your arms down by your side. Lower yourself to the ground until your legs are parallel with the floor. Next, push through your feet and jump as high as possible. When you land, return to the squatting position to begin the second repetition. Swing your arms for added explosion through the jump.
Standing One-Arm Row: Stand with a two or three foot spacing between your front and back foot. Bend your waist forward until it is almost parallel with the floor. Starting with either your right or left arm (the opposite side of the forward foot) grasp the dumbbell and raise it to the side of your chest. Slowly lower the bar back down to the floor, and then take it back up to your chest.
Medicine Ball Smash: Use a medicine ball that does not bounce for this exercise. Begin holding it at arm’s length above your head. In one motion, slam it to the ground, bending forward only at your waist. Keep your knees locked out so you do not bend them in any motion. Either you or your spotter must catch the ball on its rebound and begin the second repetition.
Plyometric Push Ups: Begin in a regular push up position; with your hands shoulder width apart and your arms locked out. Lower your body down to the ground then press yourself up through your arms. Press hard enough that your body lifts off of the ground. Land with your arms slightly bent to avoid injury to your elbows.
Hammer Curl Press: Start with a dumbbell in each hand. Curl the weights upward towards your shoulders. Then press your arms upward until the weight is extended above your head. Slowly lower the weights back down to your shoulders, and then curl them down to your sides. Do not bend or rock your back as that can cause injury to your core.
While you may never step into the world of mixed martial arts competition, this workout plan will be a move in the right direction for fitness. Over time, you will see an improvement in your overall strength and cardiovascular endurance.
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