Training martial arts demands the development of many skill ranges. Reaction speed, technical prowess, flexibility, strength all need to be developed over time. Training in classes can cover some of these requirements, but in most cases will only develop the skills to an intermediate level.
“One man has enthusiasm for 30 minutes, another for 30 days, but it is the man who has it for 30 years who makes a success of his life.” – Unknown
Taking your first steps into strength training can seem intimidating. So many exercises, machines, fitness ads and fads bombard us constantly. However, there are several tried and true exercises that are in the mainstay of strength athletes globally; the squat, bench, deadlift. These exercises are useful for nearly any sport application that requires power and explosiveness. Lets do a quick overview of the squat!
"On the Internet, everyone squats. In real life, the squat rack is always empty. You figure out what this means." - Steve Shaw
If you don't squat, you're missing out on an integral part of whole-body strength and conditioning. Form must be considered in order to keep safety and drive force through the proper muscle groups (avoiding undue tension on joints and connective tissue). The type of squat is less important than the application of force and overload potential; as such, my highest recommendations for strength athletes go in this order:
1. High Bar Squat
2. Low Bar Squat
3. Front Squat
Instead of explaining the squat, allow me to direct you to a series of videos that take care of nearly every aspect of the squat I believe to be important. This series by Juggernaut Training Systems is the best I've seen, give it your full attention.
Practice a couple of times a week, start light and slowly develop the squat into a go-to strength movement. You'll reap the long-term benefits of (in my opinion) the best exercise for building strength and power.