Endurance is the key. It doesn’t matter if you run in the park, skip rope, swim in a pool or go mountain biking: if you aren’t training to increase your stamina you are short-changing your potential on the mat.
The legendary martial artist, Dan Inosanto, once said that he thought endurance was the most important of the various physical attributes. “If you are tired you’re not strong, if you are tired you’re not fast, if you’re tired you don’t have good technique, and if you’re tired you’re not even smart”, he said.
Being able to bench press 400 pounds is impressive, but this fact alone doesn’t tell you much about a grappler’s level of general conditioning. The more interesting statistic might be how much can someone bench press right after running a 6 minute mile!
Bruce Lee called running the ‘king of exercises’ and used to take his running shoes with him when traveling to scout out movie locations. Put on your running shoes and you’ll be in some pretty prestigious company!
Want to improve your endurance? Read my article on cardio for martial arts by clicking here.