Sledgehammer Training

Updated: Sep 3, 2020

Sledgehammer Tyre Hits are a great training tool. The process is simple and literally involves swinging a sledgehammer powerfully down onto a big tyre!

Training with a sledgehammer
Sledgehammer Training

We use it in a variety of ways, from conditioning and fat loss purposes, to training the central nervous system to produce as much force as possible. We find it’s a great tool for teaching the body how to link up to produce speed and power, as well as improving overall grip strength.

There are a few ways we swing the sledgehammer, either one side at a time, alternating sides between reps, or for those with strong shoulders and grip, single arm swings :)

Sledgehammer conditioning executed with speed and aggression really gets the lungs, body and mind screaming for a rest, especially whilst trying to maintain technique and accuracy under extreme fatigue.

The key to getting the best training effect is to use as much force as possible with each hit.

Here are some conditioning examples:

Example 1

6sets x 10 hits each side (20 hits total)

Workout 1 - 3min recoveries between sets

Workout 2 - 2min 45sec recoveries between sets

Workout 3 - 2min 30sec recoveries between sets

Workout 4 - 2min 15sec recoveries between sets

Example 2

6 hits every 60sec for 10 sets - Alternating sides each set.

Example 3

Heavy sledgehammer to lighter sledgehammer - 5 Rounds

Swing a 14lb/6.3kg sledgehammer for 8 hits before changing straight into a lighter 8lb/3.6kg sledgehammer for 15 hits.

Rest 3min between rounds

Example 4

Upper Body Dominant Conditioning - 4-5 Rounds

Log Lift & Press - 3-4reps

Alternating Sledgehammer Tyre Hits - 8-10 total hits

Sled Face Pulls - 20m

Rest 3mins between rounds

When your primary focus is on producing as much force as possible with each hit, we prefer to use low reps with complete recoveries. This can also be used as a great way to excite the central nervous system before a heavy upper body lifting session.

Here are a few training examples:

Example 1

Heavy sledgehammer to lighter sledgehammer.

3-4 hits into a tyre with a 14lb/6.3kg sledgehammer, then straight into 8 hits with a 8lb/3.6kg sledgehammer.

You will find by using the heavier sledgehammer first it will allow you to generate and produce a greater speed with the secondary (lighter) sledgehammer. As opposed to just using the lighter sledgehammer by itself.

Example 2

Basic Sets.

6 sets x 2-4 hits with complete recoveries.

- Either alternating sides each rep or each set.

Example 3

When using sledgehammer training to excite the nervous system before a workout we generally drop the volume enough to fire up the nervous system without causing fatigue.

2-3 sets x 4-6 hits with complete recoveries.

- Either alternating sides each rep or each set.

For me personally I’ve always enjoyed the force needed when hitting with a sledgehammer as opposed to just doing medicine ball slam downs.

Particularly the unique way in which the sledgehammer trains the body to create grip strength and stiffness throughout the swing and on the point of impact with the tyre. This is a great quality to have in any hand to hand combat, fighting and/or contact sports.

Plus I also enjoy the sledgehammers aggressive nature.

Happy Sledging :)


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