Strength & Conditioning - Kevin Kearns, Workout 10: Suspension Superman
Kevin Kearns knows what it means to train like a fighter - he has trained UFC fighters like Kenny Florian, Stephan Bonnar, and Marcus Davis for a living for many years. Now you can get a chance at these hardcore workouts, that also happen to be a lot of fun.
To learn more about Kevin, read our feature interview:
Workout 10: "Suspension Superman"
Suspension training is on the scene full force in the fitness world. Chuck Liddell even used it for MMA conditioning on the first season of the TV show The Ultimate Fighter.
Since the days of circus acrobats this type of training has been around and people have become really fit with it. Basically, you suspend yourself with some form of cables or other strap device. Thus, you are using a certain amount of your bodyweight in a free-flowing, suspended environment. In the almost any position this is killer on your core, not to mention some other muscles you didn’t know you had.
As with any new piece of equipment innovative ways to approach this training evolve. The product we have been using at my gym with our fighters is the PurMotion AirFit. Here are some of our favorite exercises:
1. Inverted sit up
This one is real cranker on your gut. Put your arms in the AirFit in a plank position, then roll your upper body towards your knees.
Volume: 3 sets of 20 will having you say hello to your core.
Pro tip: Make sure your feet don’t slide on the surface.
2. Ground and pound
This is the closest motion I have found to not actually pounding someone. Put your arms in the AirFit up to your forearm. Then in an alternating motion begin striking the ground lightly.
Volume: 1 minute on this one for 3 sets will make you realize what a burn feels like in your shoulders.
Pro tip: Take care not to over-rotate your arms.
3. The grind
...is what I call this one, because it grinds your grip! Grasp the fabric in your hands. Lean back to a 45-degree angle or greater, then slowly pull from one side to the other. This is a real fryer on your grip and your BJJ buddies won’t like you for it.
Volume: 20 reps 3 sets is enough on this one.
Pro tip: Dig your heels into the floor on this one.
4. Push up
This looks easy, but it is not that simple. Since you have the pulley there is a lot more core involved .
Volume: 3 sets 20 reps
5. One-legged squats
If you ever wanted to be able to perform a one-legged squats well this is your chance. Simply back up until your arms are extended and then raise one leg and squat down.
Volume: 20 reps and 3 sets