Naqam Washington has done it all, from being the traveling trainer for the New York Knicks, the fitness coach of Puff Combs, and is currently the trainer for Netflix Marvel series, Daredevil. His passion outside of training his star clients (which also includes Penny Hardaway, Patrick Ewing, and Gary Sheffield) are Muay thai, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and nerding out on comic books.
I can say with confidence that 99 percent of us don't have the same schedule as a professional athlete. Instead of a 10 a.m. marketing meeting, professional fighters start their morning with the first of two daily training sessions. Their afternoon may consist of interviews, an appointment with the physical therapist, lunch, a nap, and then they're back in the gym for their second training session.
Training and strengthening the core especially correlates to the cage when he’s on the ground, according to Jackson. “In Brazilian jujitsu, if somebody is laying on top of you and you got to get up, your core gets tired,” he admitted. “If I haven’t been working on my core, it’s harder to get up off your back because your core fatigues. You get tired and it takes a lot of core to do certain moves and get out of moves. That’s why a strong core is important.” Plus, Jackson says, “I think I read in Men’s Health that if you have [strong] abs, you live longer and stuff.” (He’s right! We did say that.)
While you can’t depend on boxing solely as a skill, it is an important part of MMA training. The advantage of sharpening your boxing skill set is that you will improve your hand skills, and boxing includes a great deal of conditioning that will make you a stronger MMA fighter. Find an MMA gym with skilled boxing coaches that offer classes ranging from beginning skills to professional-level boxing. However, don’t expect to simply rely on those boxing skills. Many a tough boxer has been thrown to the ground by an expert wrestler.
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