Although, a Muay Thai fighter incorporates speed and explosive movements. The fighting technique consists of kicking, jumping, hopping, punching, pushing, and throwing. All these explosive movements and techniques demand extraordinary stamina and power. Let’s get a little knowledge about Plyometric exercises because, the more you know, the easier for you to perform.
A Muay Thai fighter must incorporate plyometric exercises to build maximum strength. Performing plyometric exercises is based on usual natural dynamic movements. Although these movements seem cool but demand maximum power while training. Plyometric exercises include bodyweight training, Kettlebell movements, and many other training techniques.
Why Include Plyometric Exercises for Muay Thai?
These exercises help the fighter to develop muscle fibers that take your performance level to the maximum and provide intense energy bursts throughout the fight.
You can say, a Muay Thai fighter who contains plyometric exercises with his training, it is hard to let him down. Moreover, his hitting power and strength are more than a usual fighter because he throws powerful strikes and explosive hits. His movements are faster than normal because his cardio is better than his opponent.
A Muay Thai fighter must develop fast-twitch muscle fibers because they produce maximum force and greater power at higher velocity. As these twitch muscle fibers help in increasing the power and effectiveness of your strikes.
Best Plyometric Exercises for Muay Thai | Combat Sport Athletes
The following are the best plyometric exercises, these might not make a complete workout routine but are still effective. You can add them to your daily training sessions. You might find some exercises simple but they are the most effective. These exercises are progressive in volume with low reps but demand maximum effort. So, let’s get started with:
1. Plyometric Exercises – Plyo Push-Ups:
Push-ups are the most common in the field of fitness. But these push-ups are different from the traditional push-ups with a little addition. By adding a little twist, the clap after the push enhances the toughness of this exercise.
Push-ups are the best upper body explosive exercise. By incorporating Plyo Push-Ups in your training routines you will notice a clear improvement in your punching, pushing, and clinching.
2. Muay Thai Exercises – Skipping Rope:
One of the simplest yet most effective plyometric exercises is jumping or skipping rope. As it has already been discussed above twitch muscle fibers are the least to ignore, you cannot skip training to build twitch muscle fibers. Skipping rope is the simplest, greatest, and fastest way to build twitch muscle fibers.
A Muay Thai fighter should have known this. Add skipping rope in your training session, you can help it with warm-up and cool-down sessions. So, incorporate this Plyometric exercise in your training sessions.
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3. Barbell Jump Squat:
Sounds a little heavier, right? Don’t worry, you should just put lightweight on the barbell to perform this Plyometric exercise. By incorporating this exercise you will be lighter and your kicks and movement will be faster than before.
Barbell Jump Squat is an advanced movement and demands a perfect angle of performance. It is crucial to perform bodyweight jump squats first and then level up with this exercise.
This Plyometric exercise strengthens your overall body but more importantly increases your lower body strength.
4. Plyometric Exercises – Tuck Jumps:
Explosive power and agility are the main components that need to be improved and strengthened. This Plyometric exercise is based on explosive movements that help to develop dynamic power in the legs, agility, and overall movement speed. The tuck jump exercise uses the athlete’s bodyweight only to develop explosive power and speed.
5. Plyometric Exercises – Box Jumps:
Box Jumps is like fun training, athletes actually enjoy doing it, but that doesn’t mean it’s not effective. This Plyometric exercise helps to enhance the power in your glutes and lower body. Box Jumps make your legs destructible, one kick is enough to knock out your opponent. Except for empowering your lower body and kicks, these exercises improve your overall fighting performance.
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6. Lateral Jumps-One Legged Hops:
Balancing is one of the skills required in Muay Thai fighting. Because shifting balance from one leg to another is a real technique. Lateral jumps or One-Legged Hops is the best Plyometric exercise to take your balancing level at maximum.
This advanced Plyometric exercise helps in developing power, balance, and agility. Lateral Jumps consist of two lateral movements, bilateral and unilateral, both improve your strength as well as your stability and coordination.
This exercise helps in reducing the risk of injury by enhancing balance and proprioception throughout the whole body.
7. Muay Thai Exercises – Explosive Step Ups:
This unilateral Plyometric exercise works each leg separately. There are many movements in martial arts that start and end with the one-leg movement. It is crucial to train unilaterally, it helps increase your power, strength, and balancing as well.
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8. Medicine Ball Throws:
Medicine Ball throws help in building punching strength and increasing the hitting intensity. This Plyometric exercise engages your shoulder, arms, and forearms muscles and strengthens them to strike fast yet strong.
The medicine ball throws develop upper body explosiveness along with building your cardio.
This Plyometric exercise can be done in different styles and motions. I prefer to train it like side throws, front throws, and half-burpee throws.
This exercise makes your hips part strong because that is the area where all your punching and kicking power generates. Side rotation ball throws help in making your hips strong.
9. Plyometric Exercises – Long Jumps:
Overall body performance is crucial in Muay Thai or other martial arts fighting styles. Long Jumps is a most effective Plyometric exercise that helps to develop your lower body strength and power.
To perform this exercise you’ll need a good hip thrust and make sure your technique of doing this exercise is right. Don’t get yourself injured, perform perfect and controlled jumps to prevent injuries.
Plyometric exercises help improve your overall body performance because these exercises utilize all body muscles and make them move. So, if you are working on your vertical jump, your speed, agility, and explosiveness are ultimately improving. That means you will jump higher than before, your kicks and punches will have more power and speed. This works with your movement as well, you can easily goop in and out, quickly. You are ultimately improving your flying kicks and your defense techniques are improving as well.