Sci-MX understands that whether you are a regular gym goer, an amateur sportsman or an elite professional, reaching your goals in strength development, muscle building, fat control and recovery all need support from sports supplements that have been designed with intelligent, scientifically researched formulas and the highest quality ingredients. One such sport where Sci-MX is able to bring its expertise and passion to bear is MMA, also known as MMA (mixed martial arts). And it’s one tough sport!
Combining elements of various combat disciplines such as boxing, muay thai, wrestling and jui jitsu, MMA demands the ultimate from fighters’ bodies whether they’re training, sparring or competing. Combinations of punches, kicks, takedowns, and submissions challenge MMA fighters on every level, and from all angles.
Trojan Free Fighters, one of the UK’s leading MMA teams, depends on Sci-MX to understand their specific needs and support their fighters before, during and after training with its effective range of the sports nutrition formulas. Dan Richards, Trojan Free Fighters’ owner, talked to us about how working with Sci-MX helps keep their amateur and pro fighters in top form and emerging as winners when they step out of the cage.
MMA is a true art form. It requires explosive fitness and power, a high level of cardiovascular endurance and overall conditioning. In training, fighters need to perform heavy lifting, body weight work, speed and agility, and all the while they must prioritise recovery in order to get oxygen back into the muscles quickly. Fights are fast but gruelling, ranging from 3x3minutes and 3x5 minutes to 5x5 minutes at title level.
Trojan's professional fighters will train six days per week, two or three times per day. Mornings will be dedicated to strength and conditioning work, focusing on explosive power. During the day, they'll work on technical aspects, like sparring. At evening training, we'll put it all together in a group setting. Semi-professionals tend to train three to five times per week, following the same routine as the pros. Amateurs train at the club once or twice a week to enjoy the fitness and competitive outlets the sport offers. There's so much involved in MMA that any level of athlete is constantly learning.
Your guys are in pretty good shape. What does a typical MMA fighter look like? The demands of the sport mean MMA fighters tend to have a good all-round athletic figure. They're always lean and strong, although their actual body shape can vary from heavyweights (at up to 120kgs) to featherweights (around 66kgs) who tend to be extremely fast. Different shapes and weights have their own strengths. Our two top fighters - Matt Ewin and Che Mills - keep themselves in great shape all year round. Che is a welterweight, 6'2'', lean and muscular. Matt is a middleweight, carrying more bulk than Che, a little under 6', with broad shoulders and incredible strength in his upper body as well as explosive power through his legs. Using Sci-MX products helps us tremendously to ‘sculpt’ a fighter’s physique to suit his weight category and fighting style.
It's a gruelling sport. Because fighters are constantly changing levels to wrestle, they put a lot of work through the head, neck and knees in particular. Recovery is absolutely key, whether that's between training sessions or after fights. We expect to feel pretty sore, but good quality nutrition and the best available supplements help to keep injury at bay if used properly. That's why Trojan Free Fighters depend so much on Sci-MX. Their formulas work and the ingredients are great quality across their complete range and they give us confidence that we're doing everything we can to support our bodies and speed recovery.
The club S&C (strength and conditioning) coach will work closely with all athletes to optimise their personal nutrition. We prioritise protein for muscle recovery development and growth, balanced with good carbohydrates to give us the sustained energy we need for competition or sparring. Sci-MX's GRS-5 is a great gradual-release protein which contains unique ingredients like Vit-MX Sport to maintain all-round health and Aminogen to help the guys get the most from the protein they are taking on board. Sci-MX’s Ultragen Whey is our choice for a quicker-release protein source prior to training, and we use Sci-MX Recovery Fuel after training and competition to replace electrolytes lost through sweating. Sci-MX Omni-MX Hardcore is essential for when a fighter needs to gain muscle size quickly, like when going up a weight category. It contains a host of effective ingredients and gives very fast results.
Our fighters eat little and often, typically every two-three hours. Chicken and rice is a great staple with the perfect ratio of protein and carbs. We'll also eat pasta, fish, lean red meats, lentils, nuts and pulses.
It's a very individual thing: some fighters will suffer from nerves, and many will have dropped weight for weigh-in by restricting food and water. So the 24 hours after weigh-in is a critical time for re-hydration and re-fuelling, but of course we have to avoid feeling heavy, lethargic and bloated. So, again, we'll eat little and often to get carbohydrates back into the system, regenerate glycogen stores and rehydrate with plenty of fluids. In terms of supplements, we prioritise pre-fight energy and post-fight recovery. Our guys will take a serving of Sci-MX X-Plode Hardcore half an hour before a fight to boost energy and focus and reduce fatigue. When the fight is over we make sure they take two to three servings of Sci-MX Recovery Fuel which helps them recover faster so they can get back into training.
Our training is varied and demanding: we'll incorporate sprint training, hill runs, plyometric jumps, ball slams, sledgehammer slams on tyres and other functional movements. We perform Olympic lifts, which are great for developing explosive power throughout the entire body. During interval sessions, we'll mix sport-specific technical training like grappling or bag work. Our sessions last from 60-90 minutes.
We're delighted to have a partner like Sci-MX. It’s clear from the products and the people there that they really understand what athletes of all levels need to achieve success. What comes through is the science that goes into what they do and the work behind each product's development. They really research their products and don't put anything in that's not necessary or beneficial. Our guys see results straight away. They also like the fact that the powders mix well and taste great!
Get yourself along to a class at a club like Trojan to see what the sport is really about. There are misconceptions around the term cage-fighting, but actually it's a very professional, disciplined sport which is perfect for men, women and children. We are particularly keen to engage kids and see them progress through the sport. There's a women's division, too, and we want to see more women involved in MMA as they add so much to the sport. If you enjoy watching MMA or MMA as a family, give it a try for yourself. Even at entry-level, it's a great workout which will help you build a strong, muscular physique - and isn't that what everyone wants? It's absolutely not just about fighting. Come and engage in something new, we think you'll love it.