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Thread: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

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    Kenpo Gary is offline
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    Default Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Old School boxing managers frown on weightlifting, thinking it creates muscle boundness and slows a person down. What do you all think? Does weight training slow you down?

    Kenpo Gary
    "The heart of the Kenpo System has always been practical-effective- Self Defense Techniques." Al Tracy

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Not at all. I've started to lift a little recently and have found I'm more "explosive". I read somewhere that the same "fast-twitch" muscle fibers we use in the martial arts are the same ones we use while lifting weights.
    Having typed that, I think it's possible that adding too much mass too quickly can have an effect on conditioning and endurance unless there's some cardio in there somewhere.
    Another thing to consider is that just because someone is adding muscle and strength-they need to remember not to "muscle" through their techs.
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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    See: Professor William Kwai Sun Chow
    The above is just my opinion.

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    There are different strengths.
    Absolute strength - the total force your muscles can exert under involuntary muscle stimulation like an electric charge.
    Maximal Strength - amount of force one can generate under their own voluntary effort. Often referred to as the 1RM (1 rep max)
    Explosive strength - the ability to provide a lot of muscle tension in the shortest time. Often referred to as the important strength for many athletic tasks.
    Speed Strength - the ability to quickly execute an unloaded movement or a movement against a relatively small external resistance. For example, punching the heavy bag at full speed.
    Strength Endurance - ability to maintain muscular functioning under work conditions of long duration.

    Most of the above can be practiced with external resistance, or body weight only. Remember that strength training requires the Central Nervous System (CNS) along with the muscles. While performing exercises, the CNS adjusts and adapts to the new loads, just like the muscles do.

    If all you work on is Maximal Strength, without paying any attention to explosive or speed strength, then while you will seem "big and strong" people won't see you as particularly fast or agile. This is where the "weight training is bad for boxing" old school comes from. Also, trainers didn't want their fighters going up in weight classes just because they lifted weights, without better technique...

    Fighters need a balance of the different strengths.

    Explosive strength requires the ability to make high tension, in short amount of time. Maximal strength training actually can help with the high tension portion.

    Speed strength can be developed by exploiting an after-effect of high tension maximal strength workouts. The strength movement is done first to activate the CNS - then you do a speed strength exercise on the same body part.

    Long post basically saying it depends on what type of strength you train for. Resistance is resistance, whether body weight or with external resistance.

    A lot of this was information from Ross Enamait from rosstraining.com
    Kenpo, moving in open piecewise Bézier curves since 2011

    Trying hard not to lapse into speaking kenponics

    Been doing computers since 1982, on forums, chats and all for nearly 3 decades. Only ever blocked one person.

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Many modern athletes lift and keep their speed with muscle gain. I would think if that's all you do and don't stretch or engage in other activities then you'll tighten up an become slow.

    don (el paso)
    Daffy, fighting with his $1.25 quarter staff : "Ho! Haha! Guard! Turn! Parry! Dodge! Spin! Ha! Thrust!" (quarter staff bounces off log, bending his beak. He straightens it back to normal, and starts speaking to himself) "Something's amiss here... hmm, let me run through it. Ho, haha, guard, turn, parry, dodge, spin, ha, thrust." (beak bends again) "Got it." (straightens beak, and starts his fighting moves again.) "Ho! Haha! Guard! Turn! Parry! Dodge! Spin!"

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    bujuts is offline
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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Greater strength will always help you. General rules of thumb: 1) don't spend more time lifting than practicing, , and 2) lift with your training in mind (cardio, strength, flexibility, and injury prevention) that way lifting will always be a supplement, not a replacement. Pretty simple.

    Steven Brown
    UKF

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Quote Originally Posted by bujuts View Post
    Greater strength will always help you. General rules of thumb: 1) don't spend more time lifting than practicing, , and 2) lift with your training in mind (cardio, strength, flexibility, and injury prevention) that way lifting will always be a supplement, not a replacement. Pretty simple.

    Steven Brown
    UKF
    What's worked best for me, is to have 2 kinds of weight workouts:

    1. One set per major body part, slow reps, 60-80% of maximum, when I don't have 2 days of rest between workouts. I can workout all of my body in one workout.

    2. Split routine (2 days), multiple sets, always varying different exercises for each muscle group (Flat bench one workout, incline or decline bench the next time, and so forth.).

    Since I'm teaching martial arts full-time now, and currently have classes scheduled Mon-Thurs, I'll probably do workout 1 on Mon-Wed, and possibly workout 2 on Fri/Sat.

    But I might stay with workout 1 every 3 days, with a 2 to 5 mile walk/run in between, for the first few months. But I will go back to doing a split routine at least once every two weeks as soon as I get used to my schedule.
    Humility is not thinking less of yourself. It's thinking of yourself, less.

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    Kenpo Gary is offline
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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Quote Originally Posted by FGarza View Post
    varying different exercises for each muscle group (Flat bench one workout, incline or decline bench the next time, and so forth.).

    Since I'm teaching martial arts full-time now, and currently have classes

    Do you train lower body as well, or do you consider the kenpo stances and kicks sufficient?

    Kenpo Gary
    "The heart of the Kenpo System has always been practical-effective- Self Defense Techniques." Al Tracy

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    overall exercise is important to your MA and life in general.
    Resistance training
    Developing muscle tone not mass is the way I go. I use less weight in my lifting routine and do more reps/sets. 2-3 X's a week Muscle tone helps to keep your metabolism running at peak while gaining strength w/o mass. I use the Magic 8 I got from CFF.
    1. Bench Press 2. UP right seated row. 3. ABS 4.Leg Press
    5. Lat pull down 6. Trunk Ext (lower back) 7.Shoulder press 8. leg lifts/curls
    I will also add preacher curls every other week.
    Aerobic
    For cardio I use a bike or if the weather is bad, I run on a machine. I use two formula for this, first to determine the max heart rate I subtracting my age from 220 gives me my max heart rate 179. So if i go at 65% (179 x .65) and clip along at that heart rate (117) for max fat burning 2 X's a week and 2-3 X's a week at 85% (179 x .85) 152 for aerobic and endurance.
    resistance day
    I usually warm up for 5-10 min.
    stretch.
    do resistance.
    do cardio 65% for an hour.
    cool down 5-10 min.
    stretch.

    Cardio day
    Warm up 5-10 min.
    stretch
    Cardio 85% for an hour
    cool down 5-10 min
    stretch
    CK

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    FGarza is offline
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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpo Gary View Post
    Do you train lower body as well, or do you consider the kenpo stances and kicks sufficient?

    Kenpo Gary
    I work the lower body the same way with weights.

    It's been my experience that squats and thigh extensions (whether I'm doing 1 set or 3 sets) done at different speeds (slow or medium) really improve my kicking power.

    I love working my legs hard with weights, but you do have to be careful, and get plenty of rest in between intense leg workouts.

    Kenpo stances are great workouts when don't have access to weights or are starting out. But once you can do stances well, then weight-lifting will help you take it to the next level.

    Since I'm relocating to Little Rock, Arkansas, I'll also be running lots of hills to build up my leg strength. In fact, I'll probably do some hills for awhile before I go back to weights.

    Thanks for your question.
    Humility is not thinking less of yourself. It's thinking of yourself, less.

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    I'm sure that anyone who has been to a gym with hardcore lifters have seen the powerlifter guys who have almost no flexibility at all from all their lifts with no stretching or flexibility training.

    The purpose of weight training is to cause micro tears in the muscle and then the body adapts and repairs the muscle tissue and makes it stronger to prevent the injury the next time. So if you are repeatedly doing that without resetting your flexibility then you are going to lose your flexibility.

    The other difference is how you are lifting. Are you lifting like a bodybuilder that your main focus is on hyertrophy (muscle increasing in size) or are you training to focus on strength, or focusing on endurance? All of those can be interchanged while cycling your routines.

    But as has been said, boxing weight classes are divided by only a few pounds so they are going to try and keep their fighters in a specific class so they don't want them to bulk up by lifting and have them move up when their attributes are better at a lower weight class.

    That aside, most criminals are looking for "victims" they are looking for someone who looks like easy pickings. They aren't going to single out someone who looks in shape and can fight back (obviously this doesn't apply too much to drunken bar fights). So having a little bit of size and looking muscular can be a nice deterent.

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Some weight lifters - typically young men - start to see the physical changes that result from weight lifting, and like what they see. They like it enough to want more. So they do more...sometimes at the cost of their other training. The desire to "get big" can be very strong.

    At the same time, the fear of "getting big" leads to weight lifting being too often under-emphasized with women, IMO. One of the most overlooked benefits is the increase in bone density and strength (think about that the next time you get a broken toe). This lessens the risk of impact-related injuries such as breaks and fractures, as well as degenerative problems such as osteoporosis.

    Weight lifting should be an addition, not a replacement, to a martial arts routine. If weightlifting takes away from the time that one spends working on elements their flexibility, agility, or overall skill, then naturally those elements will suffer. This is true regardless of whether the activity is weightlifting or something totally different. If a person spends too much time walking...or bicycling...or surfing the web...or playing video games... instead of working on their flexibility, agility, or martial skill, then that person's training will suffer.

    Train wisely

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    I think sometimes the feelings of strength we get from lifting weights gives us a sense of false security.

    When I got out of the Marine Corps in 1979, I started lifting weights several times a week and got incredibly strong.

    I was working as a bouncer back then and I had a tendency to use strength instead of good technique. Fortunately, I grew out of that phase, but it wasn't easy.

    It can be a vicious cycle when you're a young man, between lifting weights and thinking you're superman.

    Nowadays when I have to deal with a student who relies on strength, I try to teach them from my prior experiences.
    Humility is not thinking less of yourself. It's thinking of yourself, less.

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpo Gary View Post
    Old School boxing managers frown on weightlifting, thinking it creates muscle boundness and slows a person down.

    Kenpo Gary
    But most new school boxing trainers think it is a must.
    I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.
    (Phillipians 4:13)


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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Squats, leg presses, and weighted calf-raises have helped my stances quite a bit.
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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    I've gone from very isolated, static, heavy weight workouts to more dynamic, full range of motion type workouts to rehab my back after surgery and to increase my speed. Consequently, I've lost muscle mass. But, I am now "quicker" on my feet than I was before.

    I would say that a person could benefit from consulting a professional trainer. However, be careful that he's not a meat-head. Some guys think that the only way to lift is HEAVY! Yeah, it gets you stronger but, if you're always sore and have a torn rotator cup from lifting heavy, it really is a drag on martial arts training.

    Good luck,
    ~Bill Richardson

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    Forgive everyone everything

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpo Gary View Post
    Do you train lower body as well, or do you consider the kenpo stances and kicks sufficient?
    The kenpo stances Parker style are only good for kenpo.

    If you want a really fast closing gap then:
    1. proper weight training.

    2. Proper Propulsion closing gap sprints.

    3. Proper flexibility drills.

    4. You need to train the ankles, calves and thighs, front and back hamstrings, etc.

    Dr. John M. La Tourrette

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kenpo Gary View Post
    Old School boxing managers frown on weightlifting, thinking it creates muscle boundness and slows a person down. What do you all think? Does weight training slow you down?

    Kenpo Gary
    I've heard this too. Don't really know for sure though as I do not lift weights.

    Honestly, I don't see how building muscle mass could make you faster or slower. From my neck of the woods, speed in your strikes comes from relaxation of the weapon (arm, leg, whatever) in movement. If that is the case, how could muscle mass have any bearing on my speed? I mean, if my arm is relaxed upon firing it toward it's intended target, regardless of how much mass (muscular strength) I have, the mere fact I've relaxed the arm takes the muscle out of the equation, right? Who knows. I'm certainly not an expert on the matter. Just a victim of my own experiences.

    We all know that clintching or tightening of the arm muscle while punching will most likely slow your strike, regardless of how big you are. That's what I was taught at least.

    In short, I can see muscle building enhancing your backup mass, strength, and power. I also see it could adversely effect your agility, balance, and perceived size of your weenie. I don't, however, think it could have any bearing on speed.

    I once studied under a Chinese system that felt manipulating the nerve centers and pressure points on a muscle bound attacker was easier. Something about the nerve centers being closer beneath the skin on a person with more defined muscles. Actually witnessed this once on a football stud who felt a simple prod of the forearm radial nerve couldn't deter his intentions. He lost the bet. Oh well.



    Like I said, just a victim of my own experiences.

    Good luck!

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    1. Honestly, I don't see how building muscle mass could make you faster or slower.

    2. From my neck of the woods, speed in your strikes comes from relaxation of the weapon (arm, leg, whatever) in movement. If that is the case, how could muscle mass have any bearing on my speed? I mean, if my arm is relaxed upon firing it toward it's intended target, regardless of how much mass (muscular strength) I have, the mere fact I've relaxed the arm takes the muscle out of the equation, right? Who knows. I'm certainly not an expert on the matter. Just a victim of my own experiences.
    Relaxation for Speed Enhancement!
    For point 1, I do suggest you re-read the posts on this thread. One (actually several) gentleman gave great advice of the type of weight training that will enhance speed and skill performance.

    The WRONG TYPE of weight training will slow you down. Re-read their instructions please. They are good instructions.

    The tests have been done, and the evidence is in. There is even substantial evidence that proper weight training will enhance "fast-twitch" muscle fiber, which used to be thought of as not possible.

    Now on to Point 2. Everyone says that about relaxation but normally do NOT have a clue to what they are really saying or not saying.

    Now I will NOT be talking down to you but I will give some of the particulars, because they are important for you to really understand what is meant by relaxation.

    Relaxation is commonly thought of as absence of all tension, a state of “letting go.”

    But relaxation in action is a DIFFERENT phenomenon.

    You want to be relaxed when you’re moving. Otherwise, your brakes are on, and you’re getting in your own way. But, in order to have a fluid motion, you have to have an amount of stability that enables you to move in a smooth way, uninterrupted by excessive muscular contractions, yet retaining your coordination. You can feel that everything is firmly drawn together, and yet relaxed at the same time.

    When it comes to motion, being relaxed does NOT mean being sloppy.
    Before training, when you tense one part of the body, the tension spreads through the entire body. But with practice, you learn to relax the tension where it isn’t needed.

    And then there is response time.

    The best assistance you can give yourself in cutting down your response time is learning to do Kenpo relaxed with the relaxation/contraction cycle. Dropping that inch or so from the ready position and moving toward the opponent can be done a good deal faster with relaxed muscles than it can be done with rigid ones.

    It’s NOT the force of contractions that limits speed of movement; it’s the swiftness with which muscles can lengthen following the contractions. If the muscles are tense, they’ll lengthen slowly; if relaxed, swiftly.

    The way I learned how to relax (I am NOT bragging but giving a reference for validity) and to never have tension was I took up meditation/self-hypnosis (Silva Method which uses as one of its mind bridging methods “progressive relaxation”). And I took up the SM not for speed but to help someone that was ill. I did notice that I needed to learn how to relax mentally and physically before the method worked the way it was supposed to work.

    Then my karate began to change. Instead of being uptight and tense when I competed I became more whole and open and when I moved no one could figure out how I did it.

    Because of the daily meditation/self-hypnosis I had learned how to move from a static state of relaxation, a feeling of just-right and oneness with the universe (also called “being mentally centered”) into a dynamic state of multiple hits in one second. And by putting that on video and writing a book about it I became known world wide as “The Speedman”. Which was/still is interesting, eight-teen years later.

    I refined that Speed Hitting method and taught it to my clients. At its heart is the same method used in Eastern disciplines to release the state of tension in the neuro-muscular system. That method focuses the mind in such a way as to exclude antagonistic concerns.

    Enough for this post.

    ©Dr. John M. La Tourrette

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    Default Re: Weightlifting Slow You Down?

    Quote Originally Posted by John M. La Tourrette View Post

    Now on to Point 2. Everyone says that about relaxation but normally do NOT have a clue to what they are really saying or not saying.
    Well it's worked for me.

    I appreciate your post. Very informative.

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