Athlepedia, The Athletics Wiki

Cross-training refers to incorporating other training methods into a specific type (using a variety) to enhance general performance, i.e. a training routine that involves several different forms of exercise.[1] Usually, cross-training involves taking the most effective parts of one method and integrating it into a current program, while leaving out ineffective or unnecessary parts.

General Uses[]

Cross-training in sports and fitness refers to the combining of exercises to work various parts of the body, most often in a functional manner. Cross-training aims to eliminate neglect of any group or part of the body. Jogging, for example, is excellent for endurance and prolonged use of large muscle groups (such as those in the legs). A jogger may lift weights in order to build muscle and increase upper body strength, which are things that running alone cannot provide. Other common forms of cross-training entail incorporating sprinting, running, swimming, cycling, weight training, gymnastics, kettlebells, or martial arts, or any combination into a conditioning program.

In Mixed Martial Arts[]

In mixed martial arts (for self-defense), cross-training refers to training in multiple styles of martial arts or fighting systems to become more proficient in all-around fighting. In this sense, cross-training is intended to overcome the shortcomings of one style by practicing another style which is strong in an appropriate area. An example would be combining striking-based arts such as Muay Thai or Western boxing with grappling-based arts such as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or wrestling. Many hybrid martial arts can be considered derivatives of such cross-training. Most modern mixed martial arts styles involve this type of cross-training.

See Also[]

External Resources[]

Below is a list of several websites with a particular focus on cross-training.


  1. Quinn, Elizabeth (2008-04-18). Cross Training Improves Fitness and Reduces Injury. Retrieved on 2008-10-01.