The Best Body Weight Workouts for MMA

Body weight workouts should be implemented into any MMA workout simply because they’re effective!

There is no substitution for being able to have a complete workout by just using yourself and a few objects around you. In order to do body weight workouts your not going to need expensive equipment or a gym membership (although gym memberships do help), you just need motivation and the right exercises.

Training with your own body weight will help with balance, coordination, stability, mobility and re-activeness... all important in any MMA training program. You learn to be in more control of your body and how your body reacts to different movements.

Here's a list of my Top 10 Body weight exercises followed by my personal body weight workout routine:

#1 Close Grip Chin-Ups


I love close grip chin-ups because I really feel it all in my back and biceps.

After a few sets of these my arms feel like they're going to explode, which is a great feeling. I also feel it in between my shoulder blades and I make sure I squeeze my shoulder blades together at the top of the motion to get every last bit out of the exercise.

#2 Wide Grip Pull-Ups

The same reason I love chin-ups is the same reason I love pull-ups. When you get a wider grip and your palms are facing away from you, the muscles you use will differ slightly and chances are it will be more difficult. Gradually spread your hands wider and wider as you progress until you feel like it's too wide to actually perform the exercise.

#3 Dips


Dips are great because they work a wide variety of muscles including your triceps, chest, shoulders and even core. The close you keep your elbows the more you concentrate on your triceps, and the wider they are the more of your chest muscles will be engaged. Find a happy medium in between or mix and match until you feel you found a comfortable position

#4 Bench Dips


Another version of dips can be done by using a bench instead of a captains chair or suspended bars. Bench dips are great if your just beginning because they are easier in the fact that your not lifting as much of your body weight up. If it seems easy add weight on top of your lap!

#5 Push ups

There are tons of varieties of push ups to do, but all in all you should always concentrate on the most basic one first. Work on perfecting your form and adding at least one more push up every time you do them. Just like dips, if you have your elbows in your triceps will be more engaged and if your hands are wider your chest will be.

#6 Clap Push Ups


Like I was saying, there are many varieties of push ups you can do, but my favorite type to do are the clap push ups. Not only do they work on explosiveness but they will also help increase your coordination, otherwise you might face plant into the floor if you don't catch yourself. Before doing clap push ups make sure you can do a decent amount of regular pushups with good form!

#7 Jump Squats

A great way to work your lower body is jumping and squatting... so put those two together and you have a jump squat! Make sure your bringing your butt close to the ground and really exploding upwards by reaching as high as you can when you jump. Try to keep it a fluent motion when your doing a set and not resting inbetween repetitions otherwise you wont get the full affect.

#8 Burpees


Burpees are overall the best body weight exercise you can do. It integrates push ups with jump squats and even pull ups. What I do is sprawl to the floor, perform a pushup, jump up to a pull up bar and perform a pull up then repeat. Not only is it great for muscular development but its a great cardiovascular workout as well.

#9 Inverted Row


If your having trouble performing wide grip pull ups, or any pull ups, the inverted row is a great alternative. Now I'm not saying its easy, but its a great way to build up the muscle to help perform other movements like pull ups. Make sure your keeping your back straight and pulling yourself up as high as possible.

#10 Plank

Plank is a great core workout but it will also work on your shoulders, triceps and chest as well. The problem with plank is people tend to be lazy with their lower back and have it either too high up or sagging low. Make sure your back is straight! You'll feel a major difference and you wont be hurting your lower back.

My Body Weight Workout Routine

This is a typical body weight workouts that I do on days I feel like my body is ready to go and not too sore or tired... because otherwise I probably wouldn't be able to finish the body weight workouts! Also the great thing about body weight exercises is that your able to push yourself to the max without risking as much injury as if you were to try to bench press your maximum and having it fall on your chest.

Burpees - 5 Sets - 10 Reps

Wide Grip Pull Ups- 3 Sets Max

Dips - 3 Sets - Max

Chin-Ups - 3 Sets - Max

Clap Push Ups- 3 Sets - Max

Jump Squats - 3 Sets - Max

Inverted Row - 3 Sets - Max

Plank - 3 Sets - 2 Minutes +


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