Hybrid Muscle Training For Sports?

By Mike Westerdal

Regardless of your body type or the type of training that your body responds to best, hybrid muscle training is all around, the most effective way to build muscle and get lean. Often times, guys ask me how hybrid training carries over into sports. Well, regardless of the sport, hybrid muscle training can help you be at the top of your game.

But did you know that there are also sports that by their very nature help you develop hybrid muscle? Actually, any sport that simultaneously incorporates resistance and cardio can be considered a hybrid activity. There are a number of sports that do this-let’s talk about some of them now.

Football: This is a phenomenal sport that incorporates hybrid muscle training. The heavy pads provide resistance and with the all the cardio that is involved in the sport, it helps build type III or hybrid muscle. Other aspects of football that involve hybrid training include blocking and training with sleds during practice. All of these are activities that require endurance (the cardio part) and the muscles to deliver sustained strength (the resistance part).

If you have any doubt that football is an awesome hybrid training technique that can build a powerful, muscular physique just look at guys like Adrian Peterson, Terrell Owens or retired stars like Herschel Walker. All three have amazing physiques-and it all is the result of hybrid muscle training.

Strongman: This is really is all about hybrid muscle training. Unlike say powerlifting where the goal is to achieve your one-rep max, strongman training simultaneously requires both strength and endurance. And as you know, the best way to develop these qualities is through hybrid training. Examples of hybrid training activities that you see in strongman competitions include the tire flip, log carrying, truck pulling and the keg toss, among others.

And if you have any doubt that strongman training won’t build a powerful, muscular physique, just take one look at Mariusz Pudzianowski and believe me, you’ll eat your words.

Mixed Martial Arts (MMA): This one also incorporates hybrid muscle training-in fact, it’s essential. Look at the guys fighting in the UFC. Do you think jogging ten miles a day carries over into the octagon and is going to help a guy get in shape for fight? No-two minutes into the match and he’ll be winded.

Why? Because the successful fighters have developed hybrid type III muscle that has strength, power and endurance. They need to develop long, sustainable strength. You don’t get that from ordinary training. When these guys train they have to mimic the moves they’ll be doing in the octagon-grappling, pulling and other things that go on in a real fight. Guys like Ken Shamrock, Matt Hughes and Randy Couture all have developed hybrid, type III muscle.

Highland games: Seriously, this is about as hybrid as it gets. Have you ever seen these events? Some of the hybrid training activities you’ll encounter in Highland games include the 56-pound shot put, the hammer throw with a 22-pound round metal ball attached to a handle, or the caber toss. This would have to be the signature event for the Highland games. The caber is a tapered log or pole that varies in height (roughly 19′-22′) and weight (100-130 pounds). They lift it, run with it and then heave it.

Lumberjack games: You’ve probably seen these on TV before. These games require participants to carry out feats of strength and endurance using extremely large and heavy logs. This one is 100% hybrid.

Arm wrestling: Your probably wouldn’t have thought of this one but yes, arm wrestling is most definitely a sport that incorporates hybrid activities. After all, it does require long-or sustained strength-and the only way to get that is through hybrid training.

Track & field: Besides the running, you’ve also got activities like the shot put and the javelin throw. Both of these are activities that require both strength and endurance.

Kettlebell competitions: Kettlebells have been around a long time. Their shape and handles make them ideal for hybrid training. Some of the activities you’ll see here that require long strength include the clean and snatch or the one- or two-armed kettlebell swing, among others.

CrossFit Competitions: These are the kinds of routines that are often touted as the “military” workouts so you’ll often see military and law enforcement guys participating in these events. Nearly all of the activities require strength and endurance.

So there you have my response to the question about how hybrid muscle training carries over into sports. As you can see, not only does hybrid training and the development of type III muscle fibers enhance your athletic performance in many sports some sports are even hybrid in their nature.

One Response to “Hybrid Muscle Training For Sports?”

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  1. Stacy Frazer says:

    Great Article!

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