Weight Loss, Increased Performance, Joint & Bone Health, and Injury Prevention. These are all benefits you’ll get from Lifting Heavy Weights
One of the most common reasons people begin martial arts training is for health and fitness. Martial arts classes will most definitely help you improve your health many people will also benefit from supplementary training and lifting heavy weights.
In this article you’ll discover who would benefit from heavy lifting, how load bearing exercise can have a dramatic impact on your quality of life, and a few resources to get you started.
Benefits of Lifting
The health benefits of lifting can’t really be overstated. We’ve become a mostly sedentary society, one that is content to remain hunched behind computer screens for much of the day. Some of this is necessary— many peoples jobs offer little choice in the amount of time they can spend sitting, standing, or active.
With this time spent sitting, combined with poor attention to diet, society at large has become largely out of shape.
However, recent research seems to suggest that lifting weights—particularly lifting heavy weights—is associated with a number of health benefits, including weight loss, increased confidence, and stronger connective tissues, joints and bones.
Lifting for Women
I hate even writing this section, as though there’s something about women’s bodies that is inherently different from men. The good news is that although there are a number of insidious myths that surround women’s weight loss and weight lifting for women, what’s good for men is also good for women.
Pick up heavy things!Lifting heavy weights will help develop more lean muscle, which in turn boosts metabolism and help the body burn fat.
The common fear of “becoming bulky” is just a myth: a clean diet and solid weight program that targets all the major muscle groups in the body will certainly benefit most women as much, if not more, than their male counterparts.
The Importance of Form
Lifting with proper form is an absolute must regardless of an individual’s goals inside or out of the gym. Nothing is more frustrating than a debilitating or nagging injury. Having said that, beginning a new lifting routine is nearly always associated with soreness.
Don’t panic this is perfectly normal and will pass in a few days. Even as a life long athlete I still experience muscle soreness when I change my training regime.
Determining the difference between soreness and injury can be difficult for many people, and that is why form should always be emphasised.
If you’ve never lifted before, don’t go in blind. There are always tutorials on how to lift properly, but learning proper form from a good trainer can mean the difference between strengthening your body and tearing it down.
It’s best to try to stay away from trainers who try to sell complicated and convoluted workouts: there are a reason there are only a few lifts that are preferred by high-level athletes.
Trainers that know what they’re doing may be rare, but finding one is fundamentally important. If a trainer tells you to squat above parallel, then it’s a sure sign that it’s time to find a new trainer.
Lifting as a Supplemental Activity
One of the biggest mistakes that athletes can make is relying on their activity in another sport to protect them from injury and provide them with strength gains. Athletes in specific sports adapt to the necessities of their specific sport: cyclists, for instance, become adept at endurance and explosive power from a hunched, seated position. Gymnasts experience hypertrophy in their upper bodies as a result of their workouts.
To avoid repetitive stress injuries to joints and muscles, lifting should be supplemented into every athlete’s workout.
So What Should I lift?
What you should lift depends on your goals. If you’re an athlete in a sport outside of weight lifting—martial arts, for instance—lifting to strengthen the posterior chain and core (squats, deadlifts, good mornings, etc.) can provide a plethora of benefits. It will also help protect the athlete from potential back and neck problems, provided that lifting is done with proper form and care.
The EXRX standards are helpful once your form is set: these standards give baseline numbers, organized by weight, which provide an overview regarding progression from untrained to elite.
Choosing a workout plan can be daunting, but there are a number of different types available. For beginners, the best option is to choose one that is centered around the big lifts: squats, deadlifts, and presses. These lifts will provide the athlete with maximum benefits in the shortest amount of time.
If you’re lifting for weight loss combining these lifts with a moderate amount of cardiovascular activity will result in excellent and very visible changes in body composition in a relatively short time span.
Strength & Conditioning For Martial Arts
If you are interested in learning a solid strength and conditioning programme specific to martial arts then I would highly recommend downloading our Free Strength & Conditioning For Martial Arts eBook.
It covers a rock solid training programme that can be used be everyone from absolute beginner to a seasoned competitor. To get your Free copy of Strength & Conditioning For Martial Arts visit https://martialartsplymouth.co.uk/start/strength-and-conditioning/