Traditionally, the makiwara board is a training tool for the karate practitioner. Most fighting sports that involve gloves of some kind tend to use a traditional punching bag. This article will explain how makiwara training can benefit the MMA fighter.
Most MMA fighters practice punching using hand targets and heavy bags. A good way to get a leg up on the competition is to start working on creating iron-like fists without the gloves. This way, when the gloves are on, the other guy will have no idea what hit him.
Makiwara training is basically the act of punching a makiwara board repeatedly using a set workout routine. The makiwara is a board that is mounted to a base and attached to the ground in some fashion. Every time you punch the board, it flexes without damaging your hand, but provides enough resistance to make the bones more dense and calloused the knuckles.
When you begin makiwara training, you must train very slow, and not at full force. You have to get your hands used to punching the makiwara and that takes time. do not use wraps or any type of covering on the hands. You are trying to toughen the fists themselves. It may take 1-3 weeks of slow training to be able to hit the makiwara with full force.
With time you will be able to create drills and striking patterns that you would use similarly in training for an MMA tournament. It is critical that you hone your punching skills in an arena where so many MMA fighters only concentrate on grappling.
You can purchase a custom makiwara from various sites, or you can easily make your own from simple supplies that you have around your house. Make sure that you do not use a wall mounted makiwara that is just a pad mounted to a solid surface. These types of makiwaras are dangerous to your joints because they do not allow any resistance.