Fresh Start to Fitness: Martial Arts Workout to Get You in Shape

Fresh Start 2 Fitness - Martial Arts Workout

Krav Maga is a dynamic self-defense and fighting system derived from various martial arts. Not only does it provide a solid way to defend yourself, it also makes for an effective workout routine, according to Jeffrey Beck, exercise specialist at the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute in Murray.

Beck recommends that you complete the following pulse pounding Krav Maga exercises from the comfort of your own home and get ready to sweat!

1) Downward Strikes: Stand with feet slightly more than shoulder width apart, squat down a quarter of the way, elbows bent, fists in front of face and a pillow or punching mitt between feet. Hinge over from the hips and punch right fist down to top left corner of pillow/mitt. Lift chest, hold squat, then punch left fist to right corner. Quickly alternate right and left punches for 1 minute. Rest for 30 seconds and repeat. Complete 3 sets.

2) Elbow/Knee Strike Travel: Stand in fighting stance with feet staggered, left in front of right, knees slightly bent, elbows bent and hands in front of face. Lift right elbow out to side at shoulder level, bringing right thumb to right shoulder. Drive elbow forward while pivoting the left. Return to fighting stance, then bring your right knee up in front of you, pushing hips forward, torso in line with hips. Set the right foot down in front of you and repeat the moves on your left side. Complete 10 reps per side and then rest for 30 seconds. Do 3 sets.

3) Knee Strike to Kick: Stand in fighting stance with your left leg forward. Envision an attacker swinging a punch. Block it with your left hand by keeping your elbow bent and extending your forearm. Drive your right knee forward, return it to starting position. Then execute a front kick with your right leg. Repeat 5-10 times and then switch sides. Rest for 30 seconds. Complete 3 sets.