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NOBODY Wants To Be Injured

Being injured is always a hazard in sports regardless of which sport it may be. And of course no matter how you prepare there will be injuries because of freak accidents or unavoidable situations. Also there is a distinctive difference between being hurt and being injured. Fighting through “hurt” is doable, almost necessary to win any competition; fighting injured can be dangerous to your well being in the long run.

Preventing injury is therefor the best defense against being left unable to train and fight. If you do get injured, HERE are some ways to keep yourself ready for when you return . Below are some of those nasty unavoidable injuries that can happen during competition.

Injuries During Practice and Drilling

Always Stretch on the Beach before some MMA training

I always Stretch in the salt flats before some MMA training

There are also steps that you can take to try to prevent injuries before they happen so that you can avoid as much down time as possible. One should always warm up and stretch before training. Not doing this can lead to strained, pulled, or torn muscles and tendons. 

A pre-workout warm-up literally warms-up the muscles which help them work better in general. Also it helps the blood begin flowing into the muscles and the muscle cells  which allows their metabolism to work and produce usable energy for you during the impending physical  activity.

Stretching is another important pre-workout activity, although it is debated sometimes for sports in general. In mixed martial arts, especially grappling based martial arts, there is a lot of over extension of joints during submissions and weird body positions that one finds themselves in. Stretching prior to working out can help alleviate some of the sudden stresses felt by your tendons, ligaments, and muscles.  Stretching correctly is also important because overstretching can compromise muscle strength.

Live Training Injuries

It is also very important to realize the danger of the sport you are participating in. During training it is not one’s goal to hurt their opponent, but instead to better yourself in preparation for your next actual competition. Some submissions or strikes in mixed martial arts training do carry a degree of danger with them.

Submissions are designed to put pressure on joints to cause great pain; this pain is usually from something in the joint being about to break, tear, pop, etc. This means that when drilling these techniques caution must always be used. This applies when you are first learning the technique and are not familiar with its limits. Also during live training it is necessary to make sure you don’t get carried away or use unnecessary force against a friendly opponent.

In recent years the danger of head injuries has become much more apparent, especially the damage done by concussions. This effects you not only while the concussion symptoms are still present but multiple concussions can seriously affect mental function over time.   While sparring it is important  to wear proper head gear, and possibly try not to hit your sparring opponent with full force, even if he deserves it.

Slams, although cool looking, can be very dangerous in the same way as well. The classic slam can smack the back of the opponent’s head against the floor/mat and not give him any way to protect himself. Therefor they should probably not be drilled at live speed. 

Some Unexpected Advice

REST! Rest is a usually overlooked aspect of avoiding injury. Your body repairs itself while you are asleep. Also extended training puts a lot of stress on your muscles and  tendons, especially at a high level.  If you fail to get enough rest your body may not be able to keep up with repairs and give out on you unexpectedly. So remember always remember to get enough sleep to compliment your hard work.

 

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What is the Correct Diet?

Diet is an extremely important part of one’s life in general whether or not they are tailoring it to serve a specific lifestyle. If you plan to compete in mixed martial arts, especially on a competition level, it is necessary to get the proper nutrition so your body can work to its full potential.

When to Eat

Meal timing is a very important for a good diet. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, everyone has heard it before but it doesn’t make it less true. This restarts your metabolism after an extended period of inactivity (a.k.a. sleep) and gives you a boost of energy. Also eating more frequently and less food is great for keeping your metabolism working on an even keel throughout the day instead of starting and stopping. This serves to give you a good supply of energy throughout the day if your training.

Post-workout recovery meals are important as well. This gives your body a supply of nutrients to repair the body after a workout. Eating meals late at night when your metabolism slows can help to store energy for another day of training. However you should still try not to eat any large meals 3-4 hours before you plan to go to bed.

What to Eat

PROTEIN! Protein is an essential part to a mixed martial artist’s diet. Protein provides the building blocks that your body needs to build up and repair muscles during a fighter’s training. Meats are the obvious source to go to for protein. Red meats, i.e. anything that comes from a cow, should be avoided en mas because of a high cholesterol and fat con been a switch to a vegetarian diet. HERE is an article showing a vegetarian UFC fighter’s diet. Fighter Mac Danzig was even featured in the documentary “Forks Over Knives” because of his vegan diet. A vegetarian diet can provide protein in creative ways with nuts, eggs, soy, whole grains, dairy products, and many other sources, and is generally lower in fat and cholesterol. This eating style is a new diet to the fighting world and it serves to be more healthy and seems to be able to provide enough protein as well, so you might want to consider this diet for yourself. 

Mac Danzig is doing pretty good for not eating meat.

Other

Getting proper vitamins is also essential to keeping your body running correctly atents. However lean chicken, turkey, and pork products are all very good sources to get protein.

A growing trend in the fighting world hasnd efficiently. This is simple to fix in today’s society with a vitamin supplement but having a balanced diet that delivers essential vitamins is a good way to make sure your body stays healthy. You can, pretty much, not have to many vitamins either because you just expel excess vitamins through your urine.

High energy foods are also important because of the energy needed for high levels of training and competition. Fats are included in this group because of the pure amount of energy they can provide with with only a small volume. In addition to this, carbohydrates are a good way to provide your body with large amounts of energy. Carbohydrates in the morning provide energy through the day; carbohydrates at night get broken down during your sleep and stored as fat for use the next day. Also simple carbohydrates, like sugars, provide quick supplies of energy for your body.

What to Drink

Without proper hydration your muscles will shut down and your coordination will suffer once you are dehydrated. The best way to avoid dehydration is to stay hydrated all the time. When you are hydrated your urine will be clear or only slightly yellow, which can be from excess vitamins and such, but  dark yellow urine means your dehydrated. Water is the best thing to drink to stay hydrated on a regular basis, but Gatorade or other sports drinks can be good to provide sugars and electrolytes to your body that are needed when working out.

Also an secret that is not commonly known is that chocolate milk is actually an extraordinarily good recovery drink. A more in depth explanation of why this is true along with other nutrition information can be found in this nutrition guide. So next time you think of drinking an expensive high tech recovery drink, think about just grabbing some simple chocolate milk.

Where Do Women go to Kick Ass in RI?

Black Diamond Mixed Martial Arts is where. At BDMMA women’s only kickboxing classes are now being offered for women seeking to lose weight, improve their fitness level, and/or simply learn kickboxing technique. Not only do they have womens only kickboxing classes but private lessons are also an option if you really want to get into it.

BDMAA is also a great venue for these classes. there are great coaches and a newly renovated facility. The facility is located in the peacedale mill complex in South Kingstown, RI. There are even a whole bunch of free incentives for signing up for classes. For more detailed information on these classes you can visit the BDMMA site HERE

Kickboxing and Fitness

The biggest reason for a lot of women to join a kickboxing class is fitness. Whether it is to lose weight or to gain some muscle and definition kickboxing can provide a great workout for anybody. The reason is because kickboxing is such a full body workout. Kicking, Punching, elbowing and kneeing takes a lot of energy. And just common sense will tell us that the more energy you use the more calories you will burn and more muscle you will potentially build.

The class environment is also a great motivation for working out. Sometimes working out alone just gets boring, you lose interest, start making excuses, and eventually just stop going all together. Just having one friend there to motivate you can be extremely helpful but a whole class of people kicking and working hard and sweating can be great motivation to push yourself and keep at the classes to improve yourself.

Lastly the program is referred to as the Black Diamond Women’s Fitness Boot Camp which should tell you something about the program. There is more to the classes than just kickboxing. These classes implement workouts that help build muscles that are needed to hit harder and move faster. This means that abdominal, leg, and buttox muscles are all focused on in addition to the kickboxing workout.

Learning Technique

Its sad but women are stereotyped as not being able to hit hard or fight well, we’ve all heard the phrase “hits like a girl”. Taking some kickboxing classes can teach you how to correctly punch or kick and adversary, whether it be in sport or in a real life situation. The kicking part of kickboxing can be especially useful for women, who have  a naturally strong lower body and somehow always seem to be more flexible than men.

Knowing kickboxing technique can certainly come in handy for anybody in a dire situation. God forbid anyone ever has to use fighting techniques they have learned to truly defend themselves, but knowing what you are doing when faced with a threat can change the encounter completely. If someone was coming at you with bad intentions and you knew the kick from the video below, I think your attacker would start to think twice about their target.

The Mixed Martial Arts Workout Plan

Mixed martial artists are known for being in great condition. An MMA fight is a grueling endeavor that puts strain on every muscle group in the body because of the complexity of motion required to do a wide variety of moves plus the energy it takes to do them. However even if your not the next Anderson Silva or Georges St-Pierre you can use this sport as a great way to stay active and healthy

The Workout

A full mixed martial arts workout is a very diverse workout that trains many muscle groups in one sitting. This is because it is not only the large muscles that are needed in this style of competition but also the small muscles needed for the finer movements and overall control. This combination of strength and explosive power is the key behind the MMA workout plan. By exercising smaller, and most of the time previously unused, muscles one can gain a lot of formerly unknown strength.

One other benefit of an mma workout is that it is almost always a full body exercise. Punching, kicking, plyometrics, isometrics, grappling exercises all combine to workout pretty much all the muscle groups you can think of. Along with focusing on various muscle groups the training is always high intensity which makes you push yourself beyond your limits to get in even better shape. Although they can be very tough a full body exercise is great for burning calories because it takes a lot of energy to use all the muscles in your body.

Lastly the type of muscle that is being built up in an mma workout is generally considered to be “lean muscle”. Lean muscle is really just muscle mass that isn’t overly bulky but is well defined and full of power. This comes from the low/no weight hi-rep environment of an mma workout which focuses on body movement and control over purely pumping iron.

This is a video of Jon “Bones” Jones’ workout in preperation for a fight. Of course his workout is extremely intense because him, like most other professional athletes, are freaks of nature.

Cardio

Another great part of the mma workout is the cardiovascular benefits. A lot of people tend to only consider running or cycling for their cardio workouts. Although there is a lot of running done by mma competitors, lets face it its probably the most fundamental workout one can do, there are other types of cardio that one encounters in mma training.

Circuit training is often used in mma training.  This workout consists of a low weight high repetition style of weightlifting where four or five different excessive are performed one after the other, again focusing on different muscle groups throughout. Also boxing/kickboxing is known to be one of the best cardio workouts around and that is always part of an mma workout. Cardio is another great way to trim fat off your physique and increase your overall health as well.

Snack Pack to Six Pack

Doesn’t everyone wish they could have a six pack as defined as Georges St-Pierre’s

I challenge anybody to find a professional fighter that doesn’t have core muscles made of wrought iron. These fighters have strong cores because it is essential to performing like they do. This means that an mma workout will practically always include a tailored abdominal workout. Abdominal exercises can be very hard but also are a main component of the mma workout.

However an ab workout isn’t nearly enough for a professional fighter to build up his core strength. The very nature of the sport demands and builds core strength, just like almost every other physical activity to some extent. You use your core to twist for a punch, to rotate your hips when you kick, and for almost any movement you do in a grappling situation. So if you want to try and build up to a strong defined midsection, an mma workout is for you.

Also for information on diet tailored fro this type of exercise click here