MMA Training: Tempo Intervals
This week on MMA Technique, Fighting Insider talks about Charlie Francis' popular Tempo Intervals.
The Tempo Intervals is a relatively low intensity interval popularized by sprint coach, Charlie Francis. A mixture of LSD and HIIT, they are not done in high intensity, but they aren’t done in continuous slow speeds either. Charlie Francis originally used the Tempo Intervals in his sprint training as a form of active recovery, and to build up aerobic fitness.
For active recovery, you can start by doing tempo runs the way Charlie Francis popularized it. A 12-15 second run, using 70-75% speed and about 60 seconds of rest in-between repetitions. These intervals are a good form of active recovery, as it activates the body’s aerobic and adaptive mechanisms with a minimum of residual fatigue. As a result, active recovery improves while performing at a low to moderate volumes.
Then you can perform Tempo Intervals in higher volumes – 20 – 30 minutes of intervals per session – to see how it would impact aerobic fitness. You can incorporate the Tempo Intervals with specific MMA drills like shadowboxing, bag and pad work, one to three times a week or during off days. You will then notice improvement on aerobic fitness, as well as increase in work capacity. That said, it is better to keep moving during the ‘rest’ interval rather than doing nothing.
However, the right key to Tempo Intervals is using the right training intensity. With a scale of 1 -10 when it comes to overall intensity, it should only come on 5 or 6. Hence, you shouldn’t feel exhausted when you’re done with this type of work. However, this kind of Tempo Intervals is still too early to be recommended as an effective combat sports tool. It only works with running, and specific combat drills like bag or pad work.
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