Kevin Kearns: "Hammer Time" For MMA Strength and Conditioning

Joshua CareySenior Analyst IJuly 13, 2010

This week, world renowned MMA strength and conditioning coach Kevin Kearns shares a unique exercise that has proven beneficial to many UFC fighters, including Marcus Davis, Patrick Cote, and Spencer Fisher to name a few.


Kevin Kearns , "Hammer Time for MMA."

There is no question that hammer strikes are a very effective tool in the octagon. We have seen many fighters use these strikes effectively. Whenever I see a fight move done in the ring or in training, I always think to myself how we can mimic or absorb that into our fight training. I also like to consider how to challenge the athlete’s conditioning as well. 

One of the circuits I really enjoy using is a matrix I learned years ago. We decided to add in one of my favorite tools: Small sledge hammers. 

This circuit is a real killer. It will test your will big time and the time to beat is under two minutes. The kicker is you have to do 72 reps in all ranges of motion. Like I said, I’m evil, Dr. Evil that is.

Side bar.

The idea behind this is to work all three ranges of motions (forward, lateral, and rotational) from low to high and high to low.

Complete all this in two minutes or less.

Set 1 – Six forward punches with hammers

Set 2- Six downward punches with hammers

Set 3 - Six rotational punches with hammers

Set 4 – Six low pummels

Set 5 – Six mid-range pummels

Set 6 – Six upper cuts

Set 7 Six forward reaching shoot with hammers

Set 8 lateral reaching shoot with hammers

Set 9 rotational reaching shoot with hammers

Set 10 – forward reaching shoot with hammers and end with two punches

Set 11 – lateral reaching shoot with hammers and end with two punches

Set 12 – rotational reaching shoot with hammers and end with two punches


Try one to two sets on Monday.

Try three sets on Wednesday with a one minute break between each.

Try three sets on Friday with no rest.

Kevin Kearns, aka Dr. Evil, is the strength and conditioning coach for several pro MMA Fighters. As well as being the coach for Martial Arts University International and 200 plus schools.

His best selling DVD series “Burn with Kearns, the basement tapes for MMA conditioning” is selling worldwide. 

For information on seminars, MMA conditioning certification, or workshops he can be reached at 508-541-3281 or