Movement Training for Strength and Agility
There are a lot of “shoulds” and “have tos” in life. Ask any kid who hates vegetables. Even those of us who love to train often feel that we “should” be doing more of something or cross-training in another. One thing that we all should try at least few times, however, is movement training. Yes, the crazy stuff that Conor McGregor was working on with Ido Portal before UFC 194. Whatever you might think of these two gentlemen personally, this type of work has real benefits, not the least of which is the sheer variety of ways it gets you a great workout without equipment. And you have to admit that they looked like they were having way more fun than most fighters at camp. Here are our top reasons for adding a dash of movement training to your routine.
1. A day off from counting reps. Because you’ll be using so many muscles at once, you can mix up the movements into a million combinations and get loads of benefit. The dynamism here helps the time pass quickly. Doing handstands, cartwheels, and animal walks is more like taking happy pills, but with the payoff of a workout. Give yourself 20 minutes of various sequences and see if you don’t feel way better than you did 20 minutes ago. Handstands are particularly good for developing upper body and core strength.
2. It benefits everything else you do. Boxer, muay thai fighter, judoka: who among us wouldn’t benefit from greater hip flexibility or superfine muscle control? That’s what we thought. And if you have a desk job during the day, your hip flexors and lower back will sing your praises when you spend time in a deep squat (keep both feet flat on the floor). From that squat, go into a cartwheel, and land in a squat; do this from side to side. If you haven’t done cartwheels since you were six, the important thing is to develop with total control, so lift your feet only as high as you’re able to maintain a smooth motion. The height can come later.
3. No space? No problem! Movement training is perfect for the days when you aren’t in the gym or dojo. During the winter, you can do it indoors and in a small space. No need for the gi or gloves, just don some jogging bottoms and one of our Tatami Fightwear rash guards and you’re ready.
Incorporate this type of movement, and you’ll notice a greater level of muscle control and awareness. And we dare you to not have fun when walking like a monkey.