Killer Ab Exercises Using a Resistance Band

If you’re looking for a great ab workout to change up your routine, get yourself a resistance band and try out some of these exercises Strength and Conditioning Coach Jason Salazar shows in this video.


Coach Jason Salazar:
Hi, Jason here at The Arena. Today I was going to show you a couple ab workouts we can do using a resistance band. We’re going to try to target the upper, lower, obliques, with just a resistance band.

Strengthen Your Lower Back with Our New Reverse Hyper Machine at The Arena

Lower back pain and injuries are unfortunately a common thing amongst athletes of all kinds, but here at The Arena we have a great machine to help strengthen and heal your back. Watch Strength and Conditioning Coach Jason Salazar demonstrate our Reverse Hyper machine in our new athletic development training center.


Coach Jason Salazar:
Hi, this is Jason here at the arena. Right now I’m just going to show off one of our new machines that we have, the Ultra Supreme Reverse Hyper. If you’ve never seen one of these and you don’t know what it’s really used for, this can be therapeutic or for back lifting, to help strengthen the lower back.

So if you have back issues, this will help pump the fluids out of our back, separate the spine, put it back together. It’s really great.

I’ll show you how to use it. Step one foot in. The other foot we get up. We’re going to pull it up, slide it in, find out where are the handles if you like. And remember, we’re going to slowly push it back and forth.

As you push forward, the head goes in, head goes out. Head goes in, head goes out. You can do this before your work out, in the middle of your workout, after your workout. It’s a great way to keep that lower back in shape.

Try These Different Types of Push Ups in Your Next Workout

Push ups are one of the best exercises you can do using nothing more than your own bodyweight. Strength and Conditioning Coach Jason Salazar has a variety of push ups you can add to your workout that will offer extra benefits. Try them out!


Coach Jason Salazar:
Hi, my name’s Jason, the strength and conditioning coach here at The Arena. Today I was going to show you a variety of pushups that you can add to your routine.

T-Bar or Landmine Exercises for Fighters

The T-Bar or Landmine is a simple little tool that can add a whole lot to your Strength and Conditioning routine. In this video Coach Jason Salazar shows a few exercises you can use it for to develop strength, balance and explosiveness.


Coach Jason Salazar:
Hi, Jason here at The Arena. Today, I’m just going to show you a couple exercises you could use with one of these elbows, also known as a T-bar, to help your legs, punching power, explosion, and balance. 

Exercises to Strengthen Your Grip

Grip strength is very important for Jiu Jitsu, Submission Grappling and Wrestling, so this week Strength and Conditioning Coach Jason Salazar goes over several exercises to help strengthen your grip.


Jason Salazar:
Hi, my name is Jason. I’m the strength and conditioning coach here at the arena. Today I was going to give you a couple tips on improving your grip strength for grapplers in Jiu Jitsu.

I’m going to do some T-bar rows. Just flat back, pull up, bring it back down, pull it up, bring it back down. Once again, this requires a lot of grip. It’s a thick rope. It’s not a skinny little pole.

We can use the same rope. We’re going to do some pull ups, which requires a lot of grip strength. Just nice, pull up, all the way down, really squeeze on that rope.

Another really good grip exercise is just hanging from the bar. Now, to move it up, bump it up a little bit, if you can get your hands on a dip belt, we call it the dip belt. We’ll add a weight to it. Just add this kettlebell right here. I’m going to pop up, grab onto that bar, and just hang. Now, you can hang all the way down, which gets kind of uncomfortable, or you activate that scapula, which means pull those shoulder blades back. Hold it right here. I recommend you do this more than just the dead hang. You’ll get a little extra work in there, or you can just do little sets just like this.

Now I’m going to do a pretty basic exercise that everyone’s probably familiar with, a thruster. But, to intensify it for my grip, add two kettlebells. I’m going to hold them bottoms up. When you hold them bottoms up, you’ve really got to squeeze the whole time. Just go down into your squat, come back up, push overhead, back down. See, all how bells are starting to wobble around on me a little bit? Requires a lot of grip strength right here.

All right. Another important aspect of our grip strength is our extensors. Extensors is how we open our hands, those little muscles that extend our hand open. We’ve really got to work those. So, open as hard as you can, then squeeze, then open, then squeeze.

Let’s not just think of grip strength as being in our forearms, but we need to strengthen those fingers, as well. So if you adapt these exercises I showed you right here, put them into your workout at least three times a week, you’re going to improve your grip strength. You’re going to feel it when you’re rolling in Jiu Jitsu or grabbing someone when you’re grappling.

Myofascial Release to Help Fighters Recover

Recovery is an often overlooked but extremely important part of combat sports training. That’s why Strength and Conditioning Coach Jason Salazar is here to show you several ways to break up those knotted muscles to keep you training longer.


Coach Jason Salazar:
Hi, my name is Jason Salazar. I’m here at the arena. Today’s tip of the week is we’re going to talk about myofascial release. What that is is a thin webbing that coats all of our muscles and organs. When it gets inflamed, it clinches on that muscle. Basically, you feel like you have a knot. Whenever you touch something, it’s really tender and it hurts. This is how we get rid of it.

Everyone’s probably seen one of these in the stores. Everyone probably bought one and probably never use it. It’s called the foam roller. Very important. If we can’t go to a masseuse every week, deep tissue massage, you can use these guys in your hamstrings, just like that. You want to make it more intense? Raise one leg up. Put more pressure on there. You can use them on your calves. Like I said, you want more pressure? Put a leg on top of the other one.

You can get one of these little rolling sticks. Great for if you want to watch TV and roll your legs out, just continue rolling. I would do this for at least three minutes on one area until you get the pain to go away. It should feel nice and numb. It’ll feel good. Pain might come back, but this is going to speed up the recovery time of our muscle coming back.

A rolling pin works great for the forearms. Once again, you can be watching TV. Sit there, roll your arms out. Remember to breathe when you’re doing this. We’re trying to relax. We want the muscles to calm down.

These are great for your lower back. Anywhere where you can’t get that roller in here, like here. You can lay on both of these and just roll it up and down and up and down. Stay away from your spine. It’s not good to roll on your spine or any of your bones, muscle only.

So, if you perform these at least three times a week for at least 15 minutes a day, remember to spend at least a minute on that muscle. I guarantee you will have better release with your muscles. And that’s your tip of the week.

How to Do a Kettlebell Turkish Get Up

The Turkish Get Up is a great full body exercise you can do with a kettlebell. In this video Strength and Conditioning Coach Jason Salazar shows how to safely and properly perform this fantastic exercise.


Coach Jason Salazar:

Hi, my name is Jason. I’m the strength and conditioning coach here at The Arena. Today I was going to go over a Turkish get up. It’s one of my favorite full body movements. It’ll help strengthen your core, mobility and balance all in one. All right, so I’m going to start off Turkish get up. Important thing, we don’t want to pull up that bell on over and hurt our shoulder. With our other hand, we’ll roll that bell up, and we’ll lock our arm up top. We’re going to put that same leg on the same side. My arm is up. I’m going to go to my right hand side, my elbow first, then to my hand. Raise those hips, really pushing up that right leg. Pull my leg back into a lunge position. Stand straight up. Back down to the knee, back down to the hand. Pull that leg out, bridge those hips and lay them back down. Make sure you do this nice and slow, nice segmented movements. Don’t rush through this. Do about three sets of five on each side, and then ante up the weight.

Strength Exercises to Develop Punching Power

Much like punching technique, punching power is something you can work on to improve. For this tip, Strength and Conditioning Coach Jason Salazar shows some exercises to build strength and speed that will translate to increased punching power.


Coach Jason Salazar:
Hi, my name is Jason, strength and conditioning coach here at The Arena. Today I’m going to show you some tips on how to increase your punching power and speed. First today we’re going to start off a little dumbbell bench press, but just one arm. Just lay down just like a regular bench press, but as I press, I’m really going to fight my core from falling over to my side. Just engage the core. This’ll help out in your core and your punching power. Just like so. If you want to do this for reps, I would do like three sets of 10, just like this.

All right, so I just take the barbell. You don’t have to put weight on it. Put one weight on one side if you want. You can have the barbell into the ground to another dumbbell, if you need. Just stand a little puncher stance just like this, hand up and just nice explosions. Make sure you’re still turning that hip and pushing up. And we can switch sides. Same thing. Switch the feet placement, keep your hand up, and explode.

Now we’re just to do some chest passes with this medicine ball and this trampoline over here. This is for more explosion for speed, not so much power, just a big push, catch, push back in. Just make sure you’ve got a big push. You can even switch this up with one hand, if you want. A big push down in, just make sure you catch that ball and don’t get smashed in the face.

We get up on these plates right here and I’m going to drop down into a pushup, explode back up onto the plates, and back down, and explode back up. Just like so. You can stack up more plates if you like. Get as high as you can, and just start off with one plate.

These are called rotational pushups. I’m going to start off on my hip on my side, not on my back. On my hip, just like so. My foot’s still touching over there and I’m going to use a big rotation in my hip and that’s my punching hand. Switch to the other side, same thing. Just a nice rotation, big explosion on that arm. These will really help out a lot with your punching power.


Okay, so if we keep doing these exercises a few times a week, at least two to three times a week, and keep the consistency up, you will notice an increase in your punching power and your speed. This is Jason. This is your tip of the week.

Knee Strengthening and Rehabilitation Exercises

Knee injuries are extremely common in any Combat Sport, so in this video Strength and Conditioning Coach Jason Salazar shows some exercises to strengthen the muscles around your knee, and help get you back on the mat.


Coach Jason Salazar:
My name is Jason, strength and conditioning coach. Today we’re going to talk about a little knee rehab. Before I start, I’m not a doctor. I’m just going to show you some simple exercises that can help you get along your way from an existing injury. The exercises that I’m going to show you today is about strengthening the muscles around the knee, not so much the muscles inside your knee, and before you start any of this, always consult with your doctor if it’s okay to start your rehab.


Just start off with a regular squat. Squat as low as you can get, just nice shallow squats. After you start getting the mobility back into those squats and we’re feeling good, we can put one of these bands around us. Stand in the same position. Make sure your knees are tracking over your feet, push out just like a regular squat. When we’re doing our lunges though in the beginning of this, just go as far as it feels okay. Don’t force yourself to get all the way down. But if you are going all the way down, make sure 90 degrees straight up and down.


We’re going to lay flat on the ground. We’re going to put some resistance on this band. Going to let my leg come all the way back, keeping my heel on the ground push straight back out. Nice and slow, and controlled. You don’t have to go all the way up. Just little ones. Remember, taking everything nice and slow. Raise our hips up nice and straight. Elevate one of those legs and just repeat it. Up and down. Once you feel a bit better about those, we’re going to stick a band on. Bridge those hips once again, raise that leg up. Now it’s going to be a little harder. Going to add a little bit of pressure on that knee. All I’m going to do, lay flat. Make sure your hips are on the ground. Curl it up nice and slow back down. Curl it back up.


I’m going to go on one leg, put all my weight on that one. I’m going to like … a mini little bit of a lunge forward. Then I’ll turn a little bit, we’ll turn a little bit more. You want to get about seven turns out of this. Going to put both feet up to start with, and then bridge our hips up. Get a little more advanced. Take one foot off, bridge up. Even more advanced, we’ll try to curl that ball up into us. Just let the hamstring curl. And then once our knee is healed, we should probably continue to do these exercises to further strengthen our knee so we can prevent any future injuries if we can get back in there and fight.

Arena Member Chris’ Experience in Fightbuilt Strength and Conditioning Class

Chris Duron has been working out in The Arena’s strength and conditioning class Fightbuilt for over four years now. Hear what he has to say about the class and Coach Jason Salazar.



My name is Chris. I’ve been coming here for about four years. This year I’ve been off and on. Now, I’ll have time to get back into the gym and just wanting to get my conditioning back and there’s no better workout than this. Jay’s a great coach, good motivator. He keeps you interested, keeps the workouts versatile, and when we come in it’s never the same. Gives you a great functional warmup, and then just a good overall killer workout, whether it’s strength and conditioning, or just hardcore cardio conditioning, you’re going to get a great workout no matter what. This workout is going to test you, no matter what your fitness level is, it’s going to push you to the max. When I work out, way I like to put it is, I like to get my heart to try to jump out of my chest. This is one of the best ways to push yourself to that level. If you’re not into that, you can come in and work out at your own pace. So, it’s overall just a great workout for no matter what your mindset is.

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