Many martial artists, whether currently practising or former practitioners, seek effective exercises that they can do to improve explosiveness, kinetic chain recruitment, mind-muscle connection, or dynamic flexibility and mobility.
After stopping karate in 2013 after having reached the level of Brown belt 2nd Kyu, I too sought ways to maintain or improve my martial skill even while not actively practising a martial art anymore. In the 5 years since I stopped, I have participated in a few different sports (namely gymnastics, track and field, swimming, basic) and based on my experience in these I have compiled a list of exercises that I believe are important for a martial artist to have in his repertoire:
1. One-arm pushups (Punching)
This exercise will add both size and functional strength to your guns to ensure they not only look the part but can fire too! Granted, not everyone will have the necessary skill or strength to perform these, and to those people I recommend first getting to the level where you can do either about: 20 explosive pushups in one set (that’s about how many I do); 12 elevated pushups (close or wide-grip) per set; or 10 handstand pushups against a wall.
Regardless of the intermediate difficulty level of this exercise, once you are able to perform it with proper form, you will reap many benefits.
How to do it
Start in a normal pushup position with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width. Now grab the back of your corresponding leg with one arm (i.e. left arm grabs left leg or right arm grabs right leg) so that you are supporting your bodyweight with just one arm.
In order to remain balanced when doing the pushups you will need to bring the foot of the opposing leg forward a bit. ...
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