Keep fit with outdoor 'Martial Arts'

If you're looking to keep fit or diversify your self defence training, but don't fancy more sprinting on the spot in a sweaty sports hall, outdoor martial arts could be for you.

There's no space restrictions, there's fresh air, and if you don't mind training alone, there's no cost!

We've put together a very basic outline for your very own 'outdoor martial arts' training session.

EQUIPMENT NEEDED - Baggy clothes suitable for training, sports shoes, outdoor space.

TRAINING SESSION 1 - Here is a basic 30 minute session you could try! (Previous martial arts experience / knowledge essential!)

Warmup (5/10 mins) : Take a gentle jog around your local park or even from your house to a local open space you could use. Nothing too energetic, just get the heart rate up and your muscles warm.

Stretching (5 mins) : Once you've got warm, complete all your basic stretches. This might be copying stretches from your regular classes or exercises you've been taught by trainers / coaches. Take care to pay attention to those muscles you're going to be using.

Make sure you've covered your core muscles, especially the stomach, internal and external obliques, hip flexors and back muscles.

The muscles of the legs and hips are important for kicking. Cover the quadriceps, hamstrings, gluteus muscles and the lower legs.

For punching, you'll need to stretch your shoulders and upper torso, including your pectorals, back and deltoids. Finally, try and work the muscles of the arms, hand, wrist and neck.

Workout (10 mins) : No pain no gain right? Once you're fully stretched and warmed up, you'll be ready to do some bodyweight exercise. These are always simple, easy techniques which require next to no equipment. You could try -

  • Press ups - 3 sets 15 reps

  • Sit ups - 3 sets 15 reps

  • Squat thrusts - 3 sets 15 reps

  • Leg raises - 3 sets 15 reps

  • V-sits - 2 sets 10 reps

  • Plank - 2 sets 30 seconds


Kicks & Punches (5 mins) : Spend some time keeping your techniques sharp. Providing you've got plenty of space and don't mind practicing in public.

You could practice techniques either on the spot, shuffling forward, stepping forward or shadow (kick)boxing. Try and cover exercises you are familiar with. Here are some basics -

  • Front Kick

  • Side Kick

  • Turning Kick

  • Jab

  • Jab, Cross

  • Jab, Cross, Hook

  • Jab, Cross, Hook, Uppercut

Cool Down (5 mins) : Jog on the spot at a low intensity. Shake your arms and legs loose and work into some cool down stretches. A good idea is to sit down / lay down to complete these and lower your heart rate to a relaxed state.

If you do decide to have a go at your own outdoor session, let us know how you get on via social media @maomagazine.

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