Exercise is an important aspect of any sport to ensure you’re in the best state to perform. In martial arts, you implement multiple techniques developing great strength, flexibility, and precision to help you perfect your form. Continue on to find out more about exercises to improve your martial arts skills and strengthen your body-mind connection.
Core strength is essential in martial arts since much of your power and balance will stem from the body’s center. Perform multiple sets of crunches to strengthen your core and practice tightening and loosening your abs.
When you punch or kick, most of your power will come from your arms and legs, but breathing and engaging your muscles will help you land a stronger hit. Crunches will also help you control your breathing, as you must expand and contract your abdomen and diaphragm to complete the motion.
It’s important to exhale when striking and controlling your movements to expel as much force into the blow as possible. Strengthen your core muscles with crunches to gain better control of your breathing for better results in your martial arts practice.
2. Tuck Jumps
While jumping kicks aren’t necessarily the most popular of exercises, they represent control, balance, and mobility.
Tuck jumps will improve your jumping skills and help you gain more leg strength. As you jump, try to push your feet through the ground for more height and swing your arms forward as you bring your knees to your chest.
Alternatively, you could keep your arms in front of you and your hands open with the palms facing the floor as you connect your hands and knees. Perform tuck jumps for a great cardio workout that will improve your martial arts skills and help you develop power in your legs.
Performing push-ups requires focus and endurance, essentials for martial artists. It’s important to maintain proper form when doing push-ups to gain the maximum physical benefits and prevent overexertion.
The extension of your arms during push-ups will make punching feel easier. A good punch will use your whole body to power it and the various parts of the arm to extend and retract your fist quickly.
The repetition in the extension and retraction of your arms will create a muscle memory that will help you practice good form. Push-ups are also a great low-impact exercise to burn fat, which will help you tone your body and make you lighter for swifter, more agile movements.
4. Barbell Squats
Side and front kicks receive most of their power from the hips and thighs to propel the kick’s force outward. Barbell squats will strengthen these muscles and improve the power behind your kicks.
Balancing the barbell will improve your ability to balance on the balls of your feet and retain a balanced stance during the kick to prevent falling over.
Enhancing your martial arts skills requires practice and patience, like any athletic skill. Use these exercises to train your body and develop your form. When you’re ready, show off your skills the next time you step into the dojo.