Best MMA Exercise 2 of 5: Ground Training on Heavy Bag


Heavy Bag Ground Training

A great addition to my series this week on MMA’s best exercises is grounded heavy bag work. This exercise is great for anyone who wants intense explosive training that works the upper body and core.  It is very comprehensive and can be done by even the hard-core exercisers who is just looking for a way to cross-train.  As as side note, this drill has tremendous practical application for the street, building your skills to do damage if an attacker ever put you on the ground. Although this exercise is done best with a canvas or leather heavy bag, many hard-core MMA schools also have heavy bags in the shape of a man.  Either one is great, I prefer the heavy bag, because I find the heavy bags in the shape of a man are so big they really don’t allow you to firmly mount with a realistic posture.  The size of them usually resembles a guy well over 200 pounds.  The nice thing about a standard size heavy bag (not a Muay Thai style) is that they are round and make maneuvering from a mount, to side mount, to cross body to knee on stomach far more adaptable to a person 130 to 185 lbs (as far as the actually width and surface area of their body).
Grounded Heavy Bag Drilling: If you are not an MMA player give it this a try any way.  Make sure you have protective gear on your hands so that when you strike you do not injure your wrist or hand.  If you are not training boxing, kickboxing, MMA or muay thai, I would suggest beginning with hammer fists instead of straight punches since there is less potential for a wrist or hand injury.  The best position to begin in is the full mount (where you are sitting or straddling the bag).  As you get better or your skills improve add in elbows and even throw knees from the cross body.  
How Many? You should begin in short explosive intervals of time.  Start striking the heavy bag while maintaining your balance for 30 seconds.  Try this 3-5 times.  Then keep adding on 30 seconds to the interval until you can complete 5 rounds at 3-5 minutes in length with various strikes and positions as part of your round.  Ideally keep your rest intervals to 1 minute in length unless you are super-setting with another exercise or drill to follow the heavy bag round.  
Let me know if you work this or already have it as part of your regiment.  Give readers specific feedback on how you like to work this into your routine.

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