Training Equipment for Martial Arts

Lather Medicine BallThe Boom of Mixed Martial Arts about 10 years ago brought with it a new breed of martial arts practitioners and a whole new way of training. Or did it?
Mixed martial artists are focused on developing whatever is necessary to maximise success as a fighter; something many martial artists seek. They want to develop functional strength and everything they work on must benefit them in the ring or cage. Some say they have disregarded the traditional martial arts and ignored the old teachings. This is simply not true. What they have done is considered the full range of practices and extracted the techniques that benefit their success as a fighter. In my opinion, this has opened up old training methods by developing ones that work well and ‘weeding out’ the ones that don’t. This is not new; many forms of martial arts have derived from earlier forms as they have progressed over time such as Karate. Look at how Mixed Martial Artists train; it’s not gym sessions on weight machines, hitting a bag and 100 push ups. It’s chucking medicine balls, pull ups on ropes, wrestling, then rolling massive tyres; it’s all functional strength conditioning and everything you need as a well rounded fighter. This is something all the martial arts have somewhere in their systems.
Of course not everyone who does martial arts wants that, but the fighting systems could certainly gain something from looking at the MMA guys’ training regimes.
So what training equipment for martial arts is out there? Let’s look at a few items that will help you on your way.

Medicine Balls

It’s not necessary to get the heaviest medicine ball available. You’re more likely to do yourself an injury at first and then the ball just sits at home. Get a sensible weight such as under 10kg and you’ll love the training. YouTube is now a great tool for new training regimes, so use it and see the results.
At Enso Martial Arts in Brsitol we sell three weights of Medicine Ball.

– 3kg Leather Medicine Ball
– 5kg Leather Medicine Ball
– 8kg Leather Medicine Ball

There is a great range of medicine balls on the market these days, with various handles and grips. I personally prefer the ‘old skool’ leather models as their smooth surface make these difficult to carry thus developing key functional strength.

Skipping Ropes

Leather Skipping RopeEddie Izzard once said, “skipping is for Boxers and little girls.” Let’s take the lessons from the boxers as, lets admit it, they’re pretty tough.

Skipping builds all kinds of things, including coordination, endurance and agility. Mixed in with 3 minute wrestling bouts and chucking a medicine ball makes an amazing workout.

Enso Martial Arts sells three types of skipping rope which all have different functions depending on your needs:

Speed Skipping Rope
–>Leather Skipping Rope
Weighted Skipping Rope

They pretty much speak of themselves, but the sadists should go for the weighted skipping rope and no one else. The speed skipping rope speaks for itself and the leather Skipping rope is all about a tough durable rope that can work well in a club environment.

Ankle Weights

Ankle WeightsWeights attached to the body have become popular but the concept is old. The shaolin monks are famous for attaching metal bars to their legs and practicing jumping out of holes in the ground. Ankle weights that can double up as wrist weights really get the legs working hard, especially when practicing kicks. Your hips will burn but the improvement is massive.

Another relatively popular development that again is as old as martial arts itself is grip strength. Jackie Chan is famous in his films for practicing cracking nuts with his hands giving him mega finger strength and grip strength. Try it, it is impossible! There’s lots of equipment out there but I like the Eagle Catcher, partly for it’s name, and also the Hand Grip Trainersa.

Personally, the gives you more options, as you can move your fingers up and down in the loops and develop all aspects of finger and grip strength. Perfect for Wrestling, Judo and Jiu Jitsu styles and something most martial artists need to work on.

Come down to Enso Martial Arts Shop in Bristol and see our range of Equipment

190 Cheltenham Road
Bristol BS6 5RB