Mixed martial arts (MMA) contests can be won through a combination of technique and stamina. A player’s strength, endurance, and agility all play a significant role in determining their victory. Therefore, it is reasonable to wonder whether exercises like burpees can help one get an edge. Are burpees good for MMA? Read on to find out!
Burpees are good for MMA because they improve endurance. A burpee combines different elements of a push-up, plank, jump squat and squat thrust. It is an excellent bodyweight exercise that can be done anywhere, anytime, and without any equipment.
In this article, we will cover the benefits of burpees for mixed martial arts and discuss the styles in which this type of exercise is the most compatible. Moreover, you will learn about other things you can do to boost your stamina and performance in an MMA bout.
Benefits of Burpees for MMA
Lead to a Full-Body Workout
MMA enthusiasts learn during their training sessions that there are many muscles they need to exercise, yet the training time they have is quite limited. After all, they have to train their muscles, do cardio, and spar, all within a small amount of time. Since most MMA enthusiasts are not full-time fighters, burpees provide the perfect way to work different muscles while getting in the cardio points in a short period.
When you do a burpee, you exercise your legs, hips, and buttocks. All of these help in your MMA legwork as you can move more swiftly with good lower-body strength. Aside from legs, the exercise also helps work out your core muscles (abs) and your arms, chest, and shoulders. This may help with striking but is primarily helpful in helping you better grapple with your opponents.
Some athletes find that even using a mouth guard during intense activity can increase their power and output during that exercise. This can be helpful for movements like burpees.
Improve Your Stamina
How many times have you seen a fighter have the striking force of a bullet train only to be taken out by a prolonged bout and low stamina. Cardio fitness helps MMA fighters retain their stamina as it makes the body efficient in spending energy during high movement activity. While this may not extend your grappling stamina, the time you spend during legwork and avoiding strikes will not have as much of a drain on you if you do burpees regularly.
Burpees improve one’s blood flow and help strengthen their heart and lungs. A lot of what is traditionally considered stamina is just how long one’s heart can pump blood at a taxing rate.
Burpees put you in a position to demand higher performance from both your heart and your lungs, and since the heart is a muscle, it becomes better at pumping more blood without getting tired. As a result, when you are in an MMA match, you don’t even notice that you are performing at a higher level because burpees have conditioned you to handle the high-intensity activity.
You Can Do Burpees Anywhere
One of the problems people have when starting with mixed martial arts is the lack of convenience. Sometimes the gym is far away, and other times it is closed during one’s free time. While kettlebells, battle ropes, and tractor tires may all have their specialized benefits, burpees stay with you wherever you go.
No matter whether you got twenty minutes in the office or are on vacation on an island where there are no gyms around, you can work out your major muscle groups and get in your cardio by doing twenty minutes of non-stop burpees.
Help With Mental Toughness
A key benefit of doing burpees with a high-volume target is that you will build mental toughness. This will help in your MMA matchups, especially in submission holds.
When you set a high target of burpees and find yourself getting exhausted, and in pain just less than halfway through the set, you need to have a strong will to keep going. If you do not give up on a 150 burpees target, it becomes easier to hang in there when your opponent has got you in a painful submission hold.
How to Build Muscle With Burpees
Your body is a machine for efficiency. Whatever you do consistently, your metabolism and your body get used to in a relatively short period. That means that eventually, even fifty to sixty minutes of burpees will not push your body anymore. The way your body gets used to regular burpees is by increasing your stamina or reducing your weight.
While an increase in stamina is great, you don’t want to gain stamina by losing muscle mass. That is why you mustn’t compromise your muscle mass and push your body to build more muscle.
For this, you have to make sure you are feeding yourself enough protein to stimulate muscle growth. As your muscles grow through the intentional stress from this bodyweight exercise, your body has to push further to stay at peak stamina.
How to Lose Fat With Burpees
Remember how we talked about dropping weight as a way of bringing up stamina? It turns out you don’t have to lose muscle to get the number on the scale down; you can trigger a lot of fat loss in the process.
However, one must note that you can either build muscle or lose weight. To attempt both at the same time will lead to no satisfactory progress on either front. So if you have decided to lose weight while doing burpees, you will need to lower your nutritional intake to below what your body needs regularly. This can be calculated using a calorie needs calculator.
While you’re consuming fewer calories than your body needs, make sure your protein intake is at least as much as your body needs. How much muscle you lose alongside fat depends on your muscle use and protein intake.
With burpees, you are using all the major muscle groups, so the risk of losing muscles becomes pretty low as long as you don’t starve the muscles. It also helps to take creatine while trying to lose fat without affecting your muscles too much.
Keep the number of burpees you do daily consistent and let the calorie deficit created by the higher energy demands of burpees reduce your body’s fat. Remember that the results will not be instant, and burpees require a lot of mental toughness.
The Best Training Gear for Burpees
Gym clothes and fitness apparel are a multi-million dollar industry. As the industry expands, exercise-specific clothing comes to the market.
While one of the key advantages of burpees is that they can be done anywhere, they can’t be done in any clothing. Skirts and tight office pants are going to be affected by higher reps. If you have a top or a shirt that restricts your biceps or shoulder movement, you will find your clothing getting in the way of your exercise.
By simply opting for a martial arts gi or any clothing that allows free movement, you will be able to do burpees without damaging your clothing or affecting your performance. However, the most important part of your gear is going to be your shoes. By repeatedly launching yourself in the air, you will wear out shoes not meant to take that kind of strain.
Final Thoughts – Are Burpees Good For MMA?
If you are interested in mixed martial arts but do not have enough time to exercise each muscle group separately, do cardio and find time for sparring, even if it’s just punching a heavy bag with MMA gloves. Burpees are also a great exercise that will build your stamina and work out your muscles. You will be able to last longer in your matches and have the mental fortitude to avoid giving up during submission holds. That is why it is worth incorporating burpees into your MMA workout regimens.