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Increase Your Knockout Power With These 6 Medicine Ball Exercises

When it comes to increasing knockout power for boxing and MMA, I’m a big fan of using tools that are cheap and accessible for all fighters. My go-to’s are kettlebellsplyometrics, and of course, ballistics, which only require a medicine ball.

Today, I want to focus on how to increase your knockout power with a medicine ball.

Medicine balls are powerful training tools to that can be used in a variety of scenarios. They can be used to add weight, and different weight distributions, to plyometrics. They can be used to build the core. And of course, they can be used for ballistic training, the topic of today’s post.

Ballistic training is training in which an athlete throws a weight in order to improve power, and they differ from plyometrics in that they are more concentric-focused than plyometrics. That means they are focused on pure force production.

This said, in this post, I want to go over 6 medicine ball exercises to increase your knockout power. Each one of these will improve your punch, press, rotational, or slamming ability.

In other words, these 6 medicine exercises have multiple carry overs to your boxing and MMA game, especially to your knockout power.

Before I jump in, if pure knockout power is your goal, I invite you to take Heavy Hitter for a ride. Heavy Hitter contains my system for increasing knockout power through strength and conditioning. It’s been used by fighters of all levels around the world, and now I want to give you the opportunity to try it for half-off.

Alright… Let’s jump in:

1. Shot Put Throw

shot put throw increase knockout power

This first medicine ball exercise works a punching/pushing pattern. This movement mimics a shot put throw from track and field and develops your ability to transfer force from the ground up while rotating through to generate power.

This movement works the oblique sling, which is responsible for rotational power. This has obvious carry over to knockout power, and your hands for boxing and MMA in general.

How to Perform the Shot Put Throw:

  1. Grab the medicine ball with both hands
  2. Stand with the medicine ball under your chin
  3. Perform a counter movement away from the wall in which the medicine ball shifts towards your rear shoulder, your knees bend, and your hips sink down
  4. From this position, uncoil and arc the ball towards the wall
  5. Be sure to rotate the obliques as you release the ball
  6. Repeat on both sides for desired reps

2. Straight Arm Throw

straight arm throw exercise

This medicine ball exercise is another movement that uses a punch/push pattern, though this movement is going to be more specific to a punch. The straight arm medicine ball has you square to the wall, loading the medicine ball up by bringing one elbow towards that same hip, and generating power with the lower body to propel that medicine ball towards the wall.

Just like the last movement, this has clear carryover to your jab and your cross. It will also help to build the rotational power that’s so critical for combat sports.

How to Perform the Straight Arm Throw:

  1. Stand with your feet hip width, square to a wall, with a medicine ball in your hands
  2. Load up the hips and bring your elbow towards the hip of the side you’re throwing the ball from
  3. Quickly extend the hips and extend at the elbow to propel the ball towards the wall
  4. Repeat for desired reps on both sides
  5. Be sure not to over-rotate. Only rotate back to your original position, nothing past that

3. Overhead Throw

This medicine ball movement uses a slam variation, except instead of doing a traditional medicine ball slam, you’re going to throw the ball overhead towards a wall. It almost mimics an inbound pass for soccer. This is going to build explosiveness in the triceps, lats, and even the core.

How to Perform the Overhead Throw:

  1. Stand facing the wall with a medicine ball in your hands
  2. Dip the hips to lean forward
  3. Extend the hips. As you extend the hips, bring the medicine ball behind your head
  4. When your hips reach full extension, step forward and throw the medicine ball towards the wall
  5. Repeat for desired reps on both sides

4. Rotational Slams

rotational slam exercise

Here’s another medicine ball exercise that uses a slam pattern. The rotational slam builds your rotational ability while throwing in elements of balance and stability due to the legs being split apart. And although you have less stability in this position, the control you have over the dynamic movement is increased due to your positioning.

How to Perform Rotational Slams:

  1. Get into a split stance
  2. Dig your back foot into the ground for balance
  3. Sit into your front leg while screwing that front foot into the ground. This will help you maintain pressure and produce torque for the dynamic movement
  4. Holding the medicine ball in front of your body, dip down to bring the medicine ball towards the hip of your back leg
  5. Extend to bring the ball over the head with the arms extended
  6. Slam the ball down
  7. Repeat on both sides for desired reps

5. Wall Slam

wall slam exercise

The wall slam requires a partner throwing the medicine ball towards you so you can redirect the force of the ball and throw it towards a wall. This movement heavily relies on your ability to absorb and redirect force. As such, it will go a long way in building your reactive strength as well as rotational power. These are two traits that are absolutely essential for boxing and MMA, especially if increased knockout power is your goal.

How to Perform The Wall Slam:

  1. Have a parter diagonal from you
  2. Stand perpendicular to the wall
  3. Have that partner throw a medicine ball to your back hip. You should be standing with the hips loaded, feet slightly outside of hip width
  4. Once you catch the ball, quickly absorb the force and uncoil to propel the ball towards the wall
  5. Repeat on both sides for desired reps

6. Dynamic Wall Slam

dynamic wall slam exercise

This movement adds a dynamic component to the last movement. The dynamic component is a back step that moves you closer to the wall. This back step will generate forward momentum that will result in you throwing the medicine ball towards the wall with much more power. The caveat is that if you want to execute this movement perfectly, it will require a tremendous amount of balance and coordination.

This is another movement that will build your rotational power, a quality that will carry over to your knockout power.

How to Perform The Dynamic Wall Slam:

  1. Stand perpendicular to the wall with your feet slightly outside of hip width, medicine ball in your hands
  2. Load the medicine ball at your hip
  3. Sink the hips down and perform a back step. This is a step in which your rear leg goes behind and in front of your front leg. You then push off this back leg to generate forward momentum
  4. As you push off the back leg, unload the medicine ball and rotate your torso towards the wall
  5. Repeat for desired reps on both sides

Weight and Reps for Medicine Ball Knockout Power Exercises

When it comes to the weight and reps for medicine ball ballistic training, less is more. As far as the weight goes, you want the weight to be light enough to move the medicine ball with velocity, but you also want it to be heavy enough to require force production.

In general, I like to use between 10-12 pounds for males and 6-8 pounds for females. In my experience, this is these are the sweet spots that allows the athlete to move fast without sacrificing force production.

I keep the same mindset when it comes to reps and sets for medicine ball exercises – less is more. In general I program no more than 3-5 sets of 3-5 reps for each movement. This way, every rep can be performed with the highest quality.

My Systematic Approach for Increasing Knockout Power

If pure knockout power is your goal, I encourage you to check out Heavy Hitter.

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Right now, it’s available for half-off to blog readers AND it comes with a 60 Day Money Back Guarantee, which means if you don’t improve after following the program for 60 days, just shoot me a message and I’ll refund your money.

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