is the screen name for Liam Bauer on the www.mma.tv
discussion forum. Liam has over 15 years of strength
and conditioning experience to back up the training
programs he devises for athletes under his supervision.
He initially posted this program (in a rough draft)
for those that wanted a good way to build up to what
Liam refers to as a "30 gallon gas tank."
That 30 gallon tank means that you'll be able to keep
going hard at your chosen sport when everyone else has
packed their bags and gone home.
article "ENDURANCE TRAINING FOR COMBAT SPORT"
written by Liam for www.straightblastgym.com
but he has given me permission to post it here as well.
If you have any questions you can contact Liam at: firstname.lastname@example.org
trying to assess your personal strength training and conditioning
needs one must focus a critical eye on his or her own
strengths and weaknesses. In this manner the time allotted
to strength training and conditioning and all its components,
can be utilized more efficiently. For example if flexibility
never seems to hold you back but you feel like puking
after one round of hard sparring, donít waste a lot of
time working on improving your side and front splits.
Instead maintain your obviously adequate flexibility and
focus more attention on endurance training (which happens
to be the topic of this article).
There is so much myth, misconception and misunderstanding
surrounding endurance training or "Cardio" for combat
sports, it is a wonder anyone ever reaches their goals.
I hope this article will help clear up some of the confusion
and set you on the path towards more efficient and effective
training. Iíve decided to keep this article "science-lite"
(a third less terminology then your regular science article)
so lets define some terms that will come up later. If
you need clarification on things or more detail on a certain
subject, feel free to contact
The break down of energy in the presence of oxygen. Associated
with long duration, low intensity, activity.
the breakdown of energy without the presence of oxygen.
Associated with brief, intense, activity.
Long Slow Distance training, for example jogging
for 30 minutes.
High Intensity Interval Training, for example Sprinting
as fast as possible resting briefly and repeating.
principal = Specific Adaptations to Imposed Demands.
R.P.E.: A reference
scale designed to provide exercisers with easily understood
guidelines regarding exercise intensity.
are three different systems in the body that are involved
in the breakdown and production of energy:
These systems function on a continuum, no one system is
ever totally responsible for all the energy needs of the
body at one time. The more brief and intense the effort
required the more the phosphagen and lactic acid or "Anaerobic"
systems are used.
states that the body will adapt specifically to the demands
placed on it. If you want to improve your fitness for a
certain activity it is best to develop conditioning programs
that utilize the same energy systems as your chosen activity.
Combat sports are primarily "Anaerobic" in nature. In combat
sports one must acquire the ability to work at maximal and
near maximal levels for short bursts, actively recover and
then do it again. In boxing the athlete fights for two or
three minutes and then gets to rest for one minute between
rounds. The actual rounds however are made up of these burst
recover intervals. At no time during a fight is the athlete
truly resting. Even pure Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has this burst
recover element, while a match is in progress the athletes
never get a total rest. If you are fighting in NHB/Vale
Tudo it doesnít matter how long the rounds are, the basic
requirements remain. If you are conditioning to fight, skip
the "road-work" and do High Intensity Interval Training
or "H.I.I.T." instead. While doing these H.I.I.T. workouts,
be sure that you are bursting to maximum and near maximum
levels. Hopefully it is starting to sink in that for combat
sports, L.S.D. training is ineffective. Jogging or running
at a steady pace continually for 20-45-60 minutes at a time
is really a massive waste of valuable training and conditioning
time. To maximize your efficiency while training "Cardio"
for combat sports build your routine around high intensity
designing your program it helps to have a way to measure
intensity. We will use a simple yet effective method known
as an R.P.E. or Rate of Perceived Exertion scale. This scale
allows the exerciser to subjectively rate his/her feelings
during exercise, taking into account personal fitness level,
environmental conditions, and general fatigue levels. Perceived
exertion ratings correlate highly with measured exercise
heart rates and calculated oxygen consumption values. The
R.P.E. scale has been found to be a valuable and reliable
indicator in monitoring an individuals exercise tolerance
and is often used by fitness professionals while conducting
graded exercise tests. Here is an example of how to create
your own personal R.P.E. scale. Weíll use the numbers **
0-10 where 0 = nothing at all (the feeling of sitting at
home watching TV) and 10 = Very, very hard (the feeling
of running as fast as possible for 100-400 meters). You
can actually use this R.P.E. scale as a way to measure both
intensity and progress. If you are training on a machine*
at resistance level 5 and you feel you are at an "8" on
your personal R.P.E. scale, you know you have improved when
your R.P.E. for the same exercise and resistance level has
dropped to a "6" after several sessions. In the following
program I will make suggestions for R.P.E. intensity levels
to work towards and it will be up to you to match those
levels of intensity to your current ability using your personal
R.P.E. scale. The program consists of three progressive
4-week phases designed to build and then maintain a base
level of "Anaerobic" endurance.
begin each workout with a 5-minute warm-up at a level of
3-4 on your R.P.E. scale. Follow this with 5 minutes at
a steady pace that is just starting to get hard by the end,
level 5-6 on your R.P.E. scale. And then reduce the intensity
and do 5 more minutes, back to level 3-4 on your R.P.E.
scale. This 15 minutes remains the same throughout the first
three phases of your H.I.I.T. protocol. After this 15 minute
period proceed immediately to the high intensity intervals,
which will be described below. During the intervals you
should be pushing hard, striving for about a level 7-10
on your R.P.E. scale. Always finish your session with a
5-minute cool-down, another level 3-4 on the R.P.E. scale.
Weeks 1 & 2: 4 X 90 seconds work + 90 seconds
Weeks 3 & 4: 5 X 60 seconds work + 60 seconds
Weeks 5 & 6: 6 X 45 seconds work + 30 seconds
Weeks 7 & 8: 7 X 30 Seconds work + 20 seconds
Weeks 9 & 10: 8 X 20 seconds work + 10 seconds
Weeks 11 & 12: 10 X 20 seconds work + 10 seconds
first phase will lay the foundation for the following phases.
Obviously you can not sprint for 90 seconds at the same
pace you can keep up for a shorter duration. Your job is
to go as hard as you can for the given time specified. During
recovery periods you may go as slow as you wish but DO
NOT STOP MOVING! Active recovery is always better than
passive recovery and will help remove the buy-products of
your anaerobic overload more effectively. Once you reach
phase 3, you can remain there in maintenance mode. Avoid
boredom and stale training by changing machines* every 2-3
weeks as well as continually striving to train at higher
resistance levels on each machine. * If you feel you are
not fully recovering be sure to add extra rest days where
needed. These sessions should be done 2-5 times a week,
experiment to find what works best for you. Do your best
to get in at least two sessions per week. If you are diligent
you should start noticing an improvement right away. By
the time you finish phase three you should be on your way
to having a 30-gallon gas tank.
the H.I.I.T. portion of your training I recommend the following
machines in order of my preference:
1) Versa Climber.
2) Air Dyne Bike.
3) Elliptical walker with arm attachments.
4) Rowing ergometer.
5) Cross country Ski simulator.
These machines have been selected because they work the
entire body as a unit rather then just the legs alone. Although
the machines mentioned are my favorites, anything will work,
rope skipping, running, biking, stair-climbing etc. If you
do choose running or rope skipping I recommend cross training
with one of the above recommended machines to reduce the
potential for overuse injuries due to the inherent impact
on the joints from these activities.
Example of an R.P.E. scale with values from 0-10:
0 = Nothing at all
1 = Very easy
2 = Easy
3 = Moderate
4 = Somewhat hard
5 = Hard
7 = Very hard
10 = Very, very hard
me if you have any questions: email@example.com