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What training should I do to be a pro MMA fighter?

Mixed Martial Arts Training Tips

Bas Rutten (Former UFC Heavyweight Champion) gives expert video advice on: What training should I do to be a pro MMA fighter?; How much should I train to be a pro MMA fighter?; What is the best style to study to become a pro MMA fighter? and more...

What training should I do to be a pro MMA fighter?

The training you should do as a professional fighter is everything that has to do with martial arts. All those elements that I talked about, you have to do them. You have to know your ground game, the stand-up game, you have to know how to take somebody down, you have to know how to defend a take-down. All that together you have to train. There's not one thing that you can leave out anymore. On top of that you need to do a lot of conditioning. We here in the gym, we like to run hills. We run hills here. There's a hill very close to my house. We sprint up a hill and then come down and we do focus bits. We do runs for the focus bits. So their minute break is running up a hill and that hill is steep, it's a real steep hill. That gives them a phenomenal conditioning. You need to do power training also because you want to have a little strength. I don't say focus on power training-- do it three times a week. And most of the time the power training that I do is with kettlebells, or the power training that I really use in fighting. Pullups are just to make your back look big; I don't need that so I won't do it. Everything that has to do with martial arts, that kind of power training, I use.

How much should I train to be a pro MMA fighter?

I train two times on Mondays and Tuesdays and two times on Thursdays and Fridays. And then Wednesdays I train one time and Saturdays I train one time and Sundays I take off. So that's ten times a week. You also want to make sure that you don't peak the whole time. You want to, say, I do four workouts a week, I do extremely hard, I go one hundred percent and all the other workouts I go around eighty percent because otherwise you're going to burn out. Its also very important that you build yourself up and starting training harder and harder and harder the closer to the fight. Because about six weeks before the fight, if I go right away six rounds of seven minutes or several rounds of six minutes in my training you cannot sustain that. You're going to burn out. So you have to slowly but surely build it up.

What is the best style to study to become a pro MMA fighter?

Many people ask me and say "what two or what sole martial arts is the best?" There is none anymore. You need to know it all right away. It's very simple, if you go to a jujitsu gym and you train only jujitsu, your opponents will find out real fast. Maybe you'll win one fight or two fights by submission while you take your opponent down but everybody knows and goes "OK, he knows only the ground." From that moment on, if they match you up against a wrestler who can stop your takedown, you're going to be in big trouble, especially if this guy has some boxing skills because he's going to light you up. So right now, in order to do mixed martial arts, you need to do everything at the same time.

Where can I find a good MMA training gym?

A good training gym right now is hard to find. I see still a lot of gyms that I don't think are super good. You really need to do your homework. Go on the internet. What you do if you go to websites about martial arts, you go to the forums, and on the forums, most of the time, you will hear people talking about certain coaches who are really good. And otherwise, just post a question on the forum. Just say, “Hey, listen, I'm looking for a good gym right here in my town. Where can I find one?” I think that's the best way, and you can read everybody's opinion, and if eighty people from the hundred say you've got to go to him, well, you go to him.