If you have ever trained MMA athletes, or you are one yourself, then you know how challenging the “grind” is. Hitting 2-a-days for 5 days every week is a brutal schedule and it takes a toll, both physically and mentally.

The majority of these training sessions take place in a MMA facility.  Now, I love working out and training in a gym setting as much as the next guy…all the equipment access, the heavy bags, the cage, the treadmills, etc. They obviously serve their purpose.

All that being said, there’s just something about training outside that always fires me up. Maybe it’s the fresh air, the sunshine, or the funny looks from people passing by…it all seems to motivate me.



Another possibility is simply the change of scenery. I’ve posted a number of my own outdoor training sessions over the years –> (EXAMPLE 1) and (EXAMPLE 2) and (EXAMPLE 3). I’ve also taken a number of my clients and athletes outside the gym walls to get their work in. The MMA athletes seem to all really enjoy it, especially since they are literally locked up in a cage during their other training sessions. I mentioned it before but I truly believe this location change is a great mental release for these guys. To get outside, move, get better, and just change up the normal routine is reinvigorating on many levels.


One athlete I train outside is UFC Heavyweight Travis “Hapa” Browne. We work on his strength and overall explosiveness in most of our sessions. Earlier this year, he went through a training session with just one piece of equipment; the Superband. The point of this clip was simply to show that you could be a world class athlete and get a great outdoor training session in with very little equipment. The basic template in this clip is as follows:

Movement 1: Explosive Superband

Movement 2: Bodyweight “Active Recovery”

Movement 3: 80 Yard Sprint (40 yards each direction)

Movement 4: Shadow Box

*The clip shows three variations.



About Doug
Doug Balzarini, CSCS, MMA-CC, is the owner of DB Strength, which provides fitness training, education, and resources. He is also the strength and conditioning coach for Alliance MMA where he works with UFC Champion Dominick Cruz, Bellator Champion Michael Chandler, Phil Davis, Brandon Vera, Travis Browne, Ross Pearson, Alexander Gustafsson, and more. Prior to starting his own business, Doug worked at Fitness Quest 10 as a personal trainer, strength coach, and Operations Director for Todd Durkin Enterprises (TDE).

He has completed some graduate work in Biomechanics at SDSU and has obtained multiple certifications including ACE, NSCA-CSCS, MMA-CC, TFW Level 1, TRX instructor training, RIP training, EFI Gravity instructor training, LIFT Sandbag Certification, and FMS training. He has produced his 2 DVD projects on strength training for combat athletes, appeared in many fitness videos and articles, and was a coach on “The Ultimate Fighter” FOX TV show in 2012.

For more information please visit www.dbstrength.com.