Rampage Jackson UFC Workout
Build bone-crunching strength and boost your cardio with Quinton "Rampage" Jackson's workout
To perform in the Octagon takes explosive power, agility and fitness that allows you to recover fast after taking your heart rate into the red zone. It’s either that or your opponent will see an opportunity to take you down and choke you out or decorate your face with bruises.
"Rampage Jackson trains with 800m and 400m sprints to give him quick recovery times in the Octagon," says Rampage Jackson's strength and conditioning coach, Zach Light. The raw strength of the UFC star is obvious to see but unless this is to be converted into power that can be used during fights, the muscle is just baggage.
That conversion process requires velocity. Rampage Jackson shifts large amounts of weight in bursts and still manages to crank out a lot of reps. "Speed is power. We use explosive moves to train the muscles to work with strength and speed," says Zach Light. "The exercises mimic movements that you actually make in the Octagon." So try these conditioning moves. They've been taken directly from Rampage Jackson’s training to improve your power, whatever your game.
Heavy bag squat
Coach’s tip: "We use a heavy bag for this because it’s like picking an opponent up off the floor. It’s a similar shape and it gets you lifting dynamically and diagonally through the core."
Sets 3 Reps 10 each side
Drop into a full squat and hug the bag with both arms. Drive up through your feet to standing with the bag locked to your chest. Swing the bag up and outside of your left thigh. Immediately drop into another squat and then repeat on the other side.
Medicine ball pass to sprawl
Coach’s tip: "The sprawl is a classic MMA conditioning move because you need to drop down to avoid an attack and get to your feet again instantly. This conditions your core to do it under stress."
Sets 3 Reps 20
Pass the ball straight out from your chest while kneeling.
Immediately drop into an MMA sprawl with hands on the floor and hips flat against the deck.
Surge up to kneeling again and catch the returning ball, attempting to catch your partner out with the return throw.
Coach’s tip: "Rampage Jackson is famous for his heavy punch and this is the exercise that provides the explosive power behind it. The power starts in the legs and is transmitted through the core."
Sets 3 Reps 20
Drop into a deep squat with your hands on your head and your chest close to your knees.
Explode up into a fully extended jump by driving through your heels and firing up your glutes.
Coach’s tip: "This exercise is specific training for hitting your opponent’s legs with a wrestling takedown. The resistance makes the real takedown much faster and more powerful."
Sets 3 Reps 15
Stand in a fighting stance in a sprint harness (or a stretch band tied around your chest) with hands held up and your left foot forwards.
Lunge forwards with your left leg and drop, reaching out with your arms as if you’re trying to take an opponent down.
Thrust your hips forward and drop onto your front knee. Then return to the start.
Coach’s tip: "Fighters have to be positionally aware and win the scramble. This exercise develops the takedown and improves your movement around the Octagon."
Sets 3 Reps 15
Stand in a fighting stance with your left foot forwards and hands high.
Lunge forwards and down through your partner’s legs, aiming to get your whole body through in one move.
Pivot on your feet to turn quickly and then leapfrog over his back.
Having a strong core is crucial in MMA. You can hone it further with leg push downs (opens in new tab), a plyometric exercise that will help bulletproof your midsection.
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