Functional Training Institute

Battling Rope complexes

Battling Rope complex

By Tarek Chouja

Background to the Battling Rope

The Battling Rope is one of the most versatile training tools that takes unconventional training to an accessible level By accessible, I mean it is not an exclusive tool for avid fitness freaks nor for athletes such as MMA. The versatility of the battling Rope is in the incredible array of diverse and varied training applications from strong man pulls to velocity training otherwise known as small or big wave training. Credit for the Battling Ropes lies solely with John Brookfield who I personally have had the great pleasure training and learning his systems

How does it all work?

The constant force production means that the core, arms and associated stability muscles work synergistically to create these waves in a constant or varied continuum. Movements may be performed in all the planes of motion (sagittal, transverse and Frontal) making it a fluid, dynamic and ultimately functional training tool.

Putting it together – complexes

A wonderful programing method in vogue at present are complexes. Whether it is a Kettlebell, Powerbag or Battling ropes, complexes incorporate a series of coordinated movements into a free flowing sequence. These are great cross over benefits for MMA fighters and also your general client who wants to achieve the typical trio of benefits, namely Fat Loss, Tone up and get fit. Needless to say, all of those and much more are achieved by simply applying a battling rope complex.

In the following video, you will see a complex called ‘Kneeling to Standing’ that may be performed for time or repetitions


You will note that the movement started in the Sagittal plane on the knees and eventually into a standing transverse movement. The key to it all is fluidity and keeping focused with the breath, which is a whole other topic for another conversation… Now that you have a taster, remember that each of these movements needs to be broken and taught with progressions and coaching techniques before throwing a client, even yourself into the deep end of a battling rope complex.

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