DB Hammer on MMA conditioning


A week ago I sent DB Hammer a question on MMA conditioning on his Inno-Sport site. Here's what he replied:

Training to Fight

I was wondering if you had any general suggestions for someone competing in Mixed Martial Art/No Holds Barred sports. It would seem that many different neural/strength qualities are stressed. I know the athlete's particular style would be a big factor (ex. Is he a striker? Does he dominate in the clinch with throws/takedowns? Or does he primarily rely on his ground game?), but I would think there would be some overaching guidelines. And on a related note, do you think there are relative strength norms most/all athletes should be able to perform (1.5 bodyweight bench, 2x bodyweight deadlift, etc.)?

(His Response)

Does the fighter need more absolute development(i.e. strength or speed) or does he need more endurance development? If it's the latter, does he need more strength endurance or speed endurance? And when answering these you will be addressing what is needed the most. All four generalities need to be brought up over the long haul, so focus on immediate needs in respect to long term progressions. And never forget that as you are developing one or two of the weak link qualities you will be needing to preserve development of the strong suit qualities.

Well, how do you do that?

Simple, keep your traning blocks, or cycles, or whatever you like to call 'em, short and sweet. One of the biggest mistakes coaches make is they prescribe everything they think is needed all of the time. This creates neural confusion, leads to premature stagnation, and perpetuates injury.

So the better alternative is to select two to three key factors you want to develop. For instance, let's say that the athlete needs to get stronger in order to increase his power output, and his general endurance is piss poor. What do you do?

One option you is to assign a duration response and duration reserve training day, then use an opposing day to attack speed endurance. Remember, every bit of advice I give abides by the principles outlined in "The Sports Book: Best Training Ever!". In other words, it's not a crap shoot. It's all decisions based on the system at large in respect to the unique athlete in question. That is, you should know by now that speed endurance work and strength response work should not go in the same training session.

And then you need to consider technical developments. You can get strong but move like a statue and get smoked on the mat. Keep this in mind.

Tackle the athletes duration or rate requirements by practicing sport. Remember, you're not sports training if training and sport don't coincide. Whether it's on the mat or in the gym you should be using training means that attack the individual athletes needs. This means that you won't be using gym work to supplement sports participation. That would create a disasterous fatigue combination. Treat them both in respect to one another. That is the most important first step you can take. Then fill in the cracks with some of the above advice.

Who is this guy?


DB Hammer is otherwise known as Dietrich Buchenholz
allegedly based in Germany where he has a private training facility at which he has trained numerous
world and Olympic champions.

He has articles posted on the Westside website and has
provoked extensive debate on the Supertraining and Charlie Francis forums.

For most of us his language is pretty inpenetrable but he does have his supporters.

Whatever the merits of his work he is clearly not who he purports to be. There is no record of him in Europe
and the alleged training facility and training of champions is simply beyond credibility. Some like Chris Thibaudeau think that he is Jay Schroeder's alter ego although there are similarities and differences in their work.

"Some like Chris Thibaudeau think that he is Jay Schroeder's alter ego although there are similarities and differences in their work."

Like Shroeder's extensive use of negatives and DB's complete avoidance of them. There is an article on the inno-sport site now that clears up a lot of the terminology.