Fighting Applications of S&S

Kozushi

Level 7 Valued Member
Not sure if this has come up before as its own thread or not.

Of course S&S as a GPP program, like any fitness program is going to have carry-over to fighting: more endurance, mental toughness, balance, stronger grip, more explosiveness...
Also, any kind of weight training has carry-over to grappling and wrestling since you're strengthening your grip and your body to carry loads. In this broad sense S&S isn't going to be much different than any other good weight training program. The TGU mimics some important grappling positions of course.

But in terms of fighting applications, this is what I've felt about S&S:
1. The swings relate to resisting your opponent's pressure on your arms (which are connected to your back!) from above. Getting your arms pressed down takes away your ability to control the fight. It seems swings help with getting and keeping the literal "upper hand". This applies I think to weapons handling like swords, shields etc, and to bare arm stuff like blocking and striking too.
2. The TGU is similar but subtly different. It's also about resisting your opponent trying to crush you down into the ground, but this time the weight is resisted more by your entire body and is not so much focussed in your arms (and back). I'd like to emphasize how important it is to be able to resist getting crushed or pulled down in a match.

So, what I think I'm seeing is S&S creating an excellent kind of defensive or structural strength and balance for fighting.

To me, attacking movements are usually involving some kind of movement with the feet, which is something not really happening in S&S (just a bit of a lunge or more of a step up in the TGU).
 

ps_bond

Level 1 Valued Member
I only started on S&S when the lockdown came into effect (correlation is not causation, but it has caused one or two issues with progression),

My main focus is traditional jiu jitsu, so includes a lot of bits that Kano took out for judo; the style has evolved over the years so has effectively back-ported some of BJJ into newaza. My other MA interest is iaido, which doesn't involve an opponent. Luckily.

I can't tell yet what results I'm going to find from S&S; the fact that I'm handling much heavier weights than at the start of the year should translate to improved performance on the mat but ATM we've only just returned to training - if you've got someone from your household there, you can train with them; if not, it's solo drills. The latter don't really work for me - you can't test kuzushi, you can't test whether your footwork is correct etc. etc. At least doing TGU with a shoe you have the feedback of the balance point.

I can't currently see a specific application for the swing within jitsu (as opposed to it being useful generally), but the TGU I believe has particular application in newaza. There seem to be parallels between shrimp escapes & the roll to sitting as one part, and I'm looking forwards to seeing how much more readily I can resist armlocks being applied.

Once we're able to train normally again I'll be more able to see how applicable it is for me - I should have hit timeless simple by then, but I hope it'll be before I get to timed simple...
 

Bauer

Level 6 Valued Member
So, what I think I'm seeing is S&S creating an excellent kind of defensive or structural strength and balance for fighting.

To me, attacking movements are usually involving some kind of movement with the feet
That's an interesting train of thought. I trained judo in my youth and as far as I remember most throws involve explosive hip and knee extension, which are of course trained with Swings. Same goes for Olympic throwing like javelin throws.

Maybe heavy snatches would translate even better, knitting pulling and hinging together. But since I am not involved in these sports I don't know if this holds true.
 

NormanOsborn

Level 5 Valued Member
Disclaimer: I haven't been able to train BJJ or Kickboxing since Lockdown started, so this is all theory on my part.

The Swing develops the Kinetic Chain: hamstrings, glutes, hips, core and upper back. This is massively important in both Striking and Grappling Arts. It's how you generate power in throws, punches, submission holds etc.

Turkish Get Ups are very similar to the Technical Stand Up in BJJ. Also, the ability to exert force upwards against weight should, in theory at least, by of huge value in BJJ or Newaza.

Again, this is all just supposition on my part. I won't know for sure until we are allowed to train BJJ with full contact Rolling. That probably won't be for a few months yet.
 

Kozushi

Level 7 Valued Member
I guess my big point is that S&S is pretty much like any other kind of free weight training when it comes to fighting application. You are training your body (and mind) to resist weight and pressure bearing down on you, all the while keeping your balance. The angles, muscles and joints that the swings and TGUs of S&S train your body to handle the pressure for are subtly different than other specific programmes or movements (like PTTP or deadlifts, or military presses, or ROP or Olympic Lifting etc...) although in general I'd say "not much different". I think the TGU is especially beneficial because it has you resisting pressure downward when you are bent and twisted up in all kinds of weird positions, which is something that you don't get with a lot of the typical weight training that goes on which tends to be more symmetrical and "safety conscious."

In sum: Swings and TGUs are a bit towards the muscular endurance side of the spectrum among weight training moves, but other than the TGUs getting at weird positions we find in grappling, I'd say pretty much S&S is just good solid "weight training" which like any kind of weight training makes you overall stronger for combat.

I've actually tended to look at S&S as filling in gaps in my physique that judo etc miss! I see S&S more as a supplement than as a complement, actually.
 
Last edited:

Kozushi

Level 7 Valued Member
That's an interesting train of thought. I trained judo in my youth and as far as I remember most throws involve explosive hip and knee extension, which are of course trained with Swings. Same goes for Olympic throwing like javelin throws.

Maybe heavy snatches would translate even better, knitting pulling and hinging together. But since I am not involved in these sports I don't know if this holds true.
Weirdly, I didn't feel swings helped much with executing judo throws other than as general structural strength for my body.
 

Bauer

Level 6 Valued Member

NormanOsborn

Level 5 Valued Member
btw: Jon Engum recommends Clean & Jerk for martial arts:


Thing is, I've seen at least two versions of the C&J. The first has the double knee dip. The second is a Push Press, where the knees only dip at the start of the movement.

Personally, I prefer the Clean and Military Press, precisely because it's a pure strength movement.
 

Kozushi

Level 7 Valued Member
Something that I think makes swings unique in free weights is how far away from the body the weight is kept. When you're fighting you tend to have your arms extended, so I feel there is some kind of correlation here that is a unique perk of swings, but still, it's really just important to get strong and I doubt it matters too exactly how you go about doing that.
 

Goodo

Level 6 Valued Member
Here's my take on this having done S&S since January but BJJ and Muay Thai for a long time (I'm no KB guru though).

I feel the TGU has made me stronger everywhere. As far as grappling goes there's the obvious positions that the TGU is closely related to like the technical stand-up but the real value for me has been in creating and maintaining the tension through a deliberate movement. In BJJ maintaining a specific posture and being strong through it at critical times is key and the TGU has forced me to go a bit deeper with this in different positions eg tight core, tight bum, maintaining perfect stucture so I don't get crushed by the bell or my training partner.

The swings are basically a whole body explosion forcing most muscle groups to chain together. In grappling this can mimick a sweep, take down etc in striking it could be any kick or punch. The idea I was taught in striking was that you need to relax in order to explode, I have this in mind always when doing swings.
 

Kozushi

Level 7 Valued Member
Here's my take on this having done S&S since January but BJJ and Muay Thai for a long time (I'm no KB guru though).

I feel the TGU has made me stronger everywhere. As far as grappling goes there's the obvious positions that the TGU is closely related to like the technical stand-up but the real value for me has been in creating and maintaining the tension through a deliberate movement. In BJJ maintaining a specific posture and being strong through it at critical times is key and the TGU has forced me to go a bit deeper with this in different positions eg tight core, tight bum, maintaining perfect stucture so I don't get crushed by the bell or my training partner.

The swings are basically a whole body explosion forcing most muscle groups to chain together. In grappling this can mimick a sweep, take down etc in striking it could be any kick or punch. The idea I was taught in striking was that you need to relax in order to explode, I have this in mind always when doing swings.
An interesting conversation to have would be with a fellow BJJ athlete who trains with barbells instead of with kettlebells and compare your strength experiences while rolling in BJJ. Something that really stands out to me about the swings for example is how far away your hands are from your body as compared with any other kind of lift (the barbell rough equivalent would be the deadlift, the snatch or the clean). Your hands are straight out forward at the end of the swing. This makes for a very practical kind of extended arm strength which is useful for controlling grips at arms length, or if we're talking about weapons/fencing about being able to exert more strength with your weapons extended. The TGU is fantastic exactly like you point out, I think.
 

knockdownfighter1

Level 5 Valued Member
I used S&S for preparation for a full contact karate tournament in 2018 and have used it ever since.

Although anecdotal, I found that the amount of power and explosiveness I had in my strikes increased fairly dramatically.
I use this now for all my fighters due to it's simplicity and it's ability allow us to train our skill work without being too wrecked.
 

Kozushi

Level 7 Valued Member
I used S&S for preparation for a full contact karate tournament in 2018 and have used it ever since.

Although anecdotal, I found that the amount of power and explosiveness I had in my strikes increased fairly dramatically.
I use this now for all my fighters due to it's simplicity and it's ability allow us to train our skill work without being too wrecked.
A good weight training programme can also help correct imbalances in physique that are a result of athletic training. These imbalances can cause strain and other kinds of injuries over time. This is a point my judo coach has made a number of times to us. For example, judo has a lot of pulling in a kind of bent over posture - not good for one's posture! Good postured swings, goblet squats and TGUs can help fix that.
 

WhatWouldHulkDo

Level 7 Valued Member
I think that the relax/contract contrast that you get during swings (somewhat relaxed in the hole, snap to the standing plank at the top) has application to striking. A good strike is very much about transitioning back and forth between relaxed and tense.

I would say the TGU benefit is as much mental as physical; developing both the skill and belief that you can resist force no matter where it comes from.
 

Erik

Level 2 Valued Member
I view simple and sinister as a simple and reliable program for the average hobbyist in martial arts and for individuals who have a harder time recovering from martial arts training(never stuck with the program). Heavy kettlebell swings for me at times for the hinge pattern. I never have seen a 106 lbs kettlebell but I can only imagine being able to do 10×10 with 1 arm and how that would help double legs and a sprawl.
 

NormanOsborn

Level 5 Valued Member
I view simple and sinister as a simple and reliable program for the average hobbyist in martial arts and for individuals who have a harder time recovering from martial arts training(never stuck with the program). Heavy kettlebell swings for me at times for the hinge pattern. I never have seen a 106 lbs kettlebell but I can only imagine being able to do 10×10 with 1 arm and how that would help double legs and a sprawl.

Do you practice martial arts yourself?
 
Top Bottom