It is awesome to have Josh Thompson and Mike Salemi contribute to our Grappling Blog. We are starting a four part series with these guys designed to take you through some of Josh's favorite training movements combined with Mike's expertise in kettlebells. Josh is a professional fighter and currently competes in Bellator MMA's lightweight division.
As a defensive movement frequently used in grappling situations, the sprawl can prevent being taken-down to the ground by an opponent. In this video, both Josh and Mike draw on elements from the sprawl (namely the feet jumping back and a simultaneous dropping of the hips) while utilizing kettlebells for an added conditioning effect.
How to Perform the Base Movement (two kettlebells)
- Start with the center of the kettlebells lined up directly with the ankles
- Hinge back at the hips, then firmly grip the kettlebell(s) and exert straight downward pressure
- Jump back extending your legs and dropping your hips
- Quickly hop back to the start position
- Extend tall quickly and powerfully
NOTE: The kettlebell sprawl presented here displays a key difference to the more technically correct sprawl that would be used in grappling/MMA, i.e. the toes are flexed when jumping back rather than “shoe laces down”.
Read more below video to see how to use this in your workouts!
Suggested Repetitions: 10 reps
Bonus: Superset with 30-60 second sprints on an Airdyne/Assault Bike or Concept II Rower
Rest Period: Up 60 seconds
Variation #1: One kettlebell, two arms
Variation #2: One kettlebell, single arm (5 reps each arm, 10 total)
This variation focuses more on dynamic shoulder and core stability
Variation #3: One kettlebell, single arm adding in vertical jump (5 reps each arm, 10 total)
Tip: Fully extend the body into triple extension on the take off; land the jump softly and under control. This variation focuses on more on dynamic shoulder stability and lower body explosiveness
Learn more about Mike Salemi: www.mikesalemi.io
Learn more about Josh Thomson: https://knoxxgym.com/about-us/
Videography by: Eli Helfman