Neck Strengthening Exercises for MT
While I am on a posting roll, I thought I would add a post about neck strengthening, as it seems there is some interest on the topic.
The first one is a real killer, but good for all levels, as you can adjust the reps to meet your level.
You start by lying flat on your back, with your arms at your side. Elevate your head roughly 2 inches of f the ground into a “ready” position.
- From the ready position, tuck your chin to your chest and return to the ready position 15 times.
- Then lift your chin to the ceiling (in what is essentially the opposite motion) 15 times.
- Then with keeping your face towards the ceiling, try and bring your head to your left should. Let your head to the movement and resist the temptation to try and shrug your shoulder to meet your head halfway.
- Repeat the motion 15 times to the right shoulder
- Then look left by turning the head 15 times
- Then look right 15 times
- Then do 10 head rotations clockwise
- Then do 10 head rotations counter clockwise
If done properly, you mouth will feel like it is trying to slip off your face, and that your head weighs a hundred pounds. Things to remember:
- At no time during the drill should your head hit the ground. No resting. If you can’t do the full 15 reps, drop the count to something manageable, and work your way up.
- Do a couple sets when you are up for it.
The next drill involves a partner, and is quite simple. Lying on your back again, have a partner place a hand on your forehead and apply light pressure as resistance. Try and lift your head off the ground, and chin to chest. Reps and sets as able.
Roll over onto all fours in a table position with your head and chin down. Have your partner place their hand on the back of your head, and try and look up. Your partner will give you appropriate resistance.
Similar resistance are then given to left and right head movements.
Things to remember: Communicate with your partner in terms of what “adequate” resistance is. No broken necks or face-crushers.
And the third one, which I can’t really recommend but will mention because it is popular with the fighters here, is getting a rope loop with a weight on it, gripping one end of the loop in your teeth, and lifting up. A dentist/MT colleague of mine back home says this is soooo bad for your teeth and jaw. I don’t know about that, but it sure does hurt if you use too much weight. It kind of makes sense that it is dangerous as well, because your teeth aren’t exactly muscles, so the drill is limited to your tooth-grip capabilities (not your jaw, but your actual teeth). If you are not worried about your teeth ripping out, or uh, don't have any, I suppose this would be a great drill!
I have been doing the first two drills for years, both myself and with my fighters, and I find that they do help strengthen the neck , which is a huge asset in the clinch, and may even help with knockout resistance.
Once again, I hope some of you find this both clear and useful.
That's a cool line up, thanks man, I'll try that in warmup tonight
I guess you could devise some sort of head strap that you could attach weights to instead of gripping rope with your teeth. You could even attach weights somehow to head gear (like the kind some people wear while sparring). I think I'll give this a try.
Actually the head strap one is commercially available.
Lacking that, I would do the first set of exercises, standing using my arms to create resistance. I like to do this first, because I can vary the resistance.
Yes-No-Maybes (the first set of exercises you described) are brilliant - I highly recommend them.
Personally, I don't count reps, I go for a time target at a constant pace - I started at one minute, and now can do two minutes of each at a solid pace, though i find it very difficult. For increased resistance you can move from a flat surface (i.e. lying on the floor ) to a bench for example, with your head hanging over the edge, which allows you to go deeper on each rep.
It's also popular in wrestling.
There is one that I think is hilarious to watch that I forgot to mention. Again, I can't say whether this is an "effective" method or not, but sure is funny to witness. I first learned this one from a trainer at my old camp (Taywin from Lanna for any alumni).
Essentially, you place your palms under your chin (inward palms with thumbs facing out), bend your knees slightly, turn your head and torso all the way to the right, and nod EMPHATICALLY while twisting from right to left and then back again, providing resistance with your hands. The reps are done quickly, and looks pretty weird while you are doing it. If anyone has seen this, maybe you can help describe it? It's probably pretty hard to visualize. I guess one way to help the visualization would be like a reluctant "headbang" from side to side, with resistance.
He swears by it.
I tried out first one, at training during warm up, 40 reps each, and crap did parts of my face feel like it wanted to punch itself, had to put my head down on the ground for a couple seconds after the head i'll definitely be adding this one in to the regular books
"Yes, No, Maybe."
You lie on your back on a floor and elevate your head about 2-3 inches. Then, wave your head in a "Yes, no, maybe" position:
Up and down.
Side to side.
Shoulder to shoulder.
You do 10 reps about 3 times for each set.
Baw.. I just read this after I posted. Haha.
Originally Posted by Deadmeat
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