Let’s talk about the heavy bag for a minute. Sure, its fun just to wail on sometimes but it is an excellent tool for developing speed, power, and stamina – if done properly.
There are a number of Heavy Bag Apps on the market and I’ve tried a bunch. I’ve found myself always coming back to two:
1. Bas Rutten’s Boxing and Muay Thai Tapes (2 and 3 minute rounds)
2. The Fight Trainer app for iPhone, iPad
Bas’ workout routines are brutal bordering on suicidal for the MMA Enthusiast. The boxing program consists of either 2 or 3 minute rounds with Bas CONSTANTLY calling out combinations with VERY little time between them. During the rest periods Bas will give you feedback and guidance saying things like “Keep your hands up, and always keep moving, Don’t Stop”. After 4 rounds or so he’ll coach you by saying “If your not tired now is the time to do some pushups or burpees”. Its literally like having someone watch over your shoulder calling out combos and sometime offering feedback at just the right times. Find a copy of these and check them out.
Fight Trainer. I’ve tried 6 different iPad and Android apps but keep coming back to this one. It uses the same numbering system as Bas (both of which come from old school Muay Thai teachers) but the Fight Trainer app has 3 features that I rely on:
1. It lets you play music while it calls out combinations AND movement. Not only do you get to have the program tell you what combinations to throw, but it also reminds you to bob/weave/move etc while playing your favorite workout music.
2. Variable Speed. You can adjust the rate at which combinations are called out. This lets you adjust the speed to your ability level without getting lost or frustrated.
3. Variable weighting for certain strikes. If there is a particular strike you want to focus on dial it up and Fight Trainer will call that out more often. Learning to throw an overhand right – great just increase the frequency of that punch and let fight trainer do the rest. Want more Left Round Kicks – do the same.
Here’s the best part. If you don’t have ready access to a heavy bag you can use these apps to improve your shadow boxing sessions. You are shadow boxing, right?