Okinawan Strength: Developing the “Iron Body”

The martial arts embody a particular set of strength principles. We have investigated some of these techniques in the lab and the training room. Here are some thoughts on Okinawan strength and developing an iron body.

Hard Style Training Principles Across Karate and Kettlebells

I practice Shurite Kempo, which is a hard style training method in self-protection. The principles we practice are the same as strength training.

The Fighter Pullup Program Revisited

Here is a powerful Russian pull-up program adaptable to any level of ability. It can double or even triple your number of pull-ups in one month.

If It Looks Right, It Flies Right

Good movement is something a biomechanist could take it apart and marvel at the efficiency. An engineer famously quipped, “If it looks right, it flies right.”

8 Rules for Proper Strength Training for BJJ

Here are my eight rules, as a BJJ practitioner and a strength coach to black belts, for how to most effectively perform strength training for BJJ.

The Pause That Comes Before a Successful Press

I failed the half-bodyweight press at my SFG Level II re-certification. Then I changed two things and re-tested successfully. Here are those two things.

Strength and Conditioning Program for BJJ Fighters

This program is a practical approach to strength training for someone interested in supplementing their BJJ game based on a formula I have applied to prepare myself and others for the toughest of martial arts competitions.

Breathing Drills: Maximize Force and Oxygen

The goal of both the martial arts practitioner and the StrongFirst practitioner is to generate maximum force. Practicing breathing drills is how we do this.

John “Roper” Saxon and the Kettlebell

As a kid, I could never have imagined that I would become friends with Bruce Lee's "Enter the Dragon" co-star—much less train him on the kettlebells.

Strength Lessons from Martial Arts Master Donn F. Draeger

In addition to being a highly-accomplished martial artist, Draeger was one of the first in his field to get serious about strength. He was decades ahead of his times and even today his advice stands strong.