If you are practice any sort of martial arts, chances are the most exercise you will do are usual bodyweight and calisthenics exercises. You may have even heard some old-school practitioners be against the idea of traditional strength and weight training, thinking that the body and techniques learned in the discipline will be enough.

If you’re still thinking this, then you should probably change the way you go about your training, and quick. Strength is a huge factor in the effectiveness of one’s martial arts skills and techniques, and weight training definitely helps there. All techniques require strength.

Some practitioners may be thinking that the general lifting of weights may distract them from their ultimate goals of being a martial arts master. Those who are uninformed may not know that ancient practitioners most likely used weight training—and because it was a different time, it’s not exactly the same weight training you can see when you go to a gym today. But they did it, just using different tools.

They also don’t know that it’s also entirely possible to practice weight training that suits whatever needs, skills, movements and techniques a martial arts discipline requires from its students. The training to enhance performance is called, aptly, performance training, and it involves weight training to strengthen the body when it goes into the motions used in certain techniques.

Those who still don’t believe weight training should be a part of a martial artist’s fitness regimen are probably few and far between nowadays. The rise of mixed martial arts has likely helped make weight training in vogue with martial artists. Always remember that the strength you possess will determine the effectiveness of your martial arts techniques—for what’s skill without power, after all? Do you train with weights? If you don’t, have you considered trying them out