Rutten explains that one of the keys to a swift and powerful kick is, perhaps not surprisingly, a strong core. So one way he perfects his kick is by... doing a punching drill using a cable machine? "You might think 'what does this have to do with kicking?' Well, you're training your core to twist, and that's where your power from kicking comes from," Rutten says. "Also, this drill is really good for focusing on footwork. Hooks to the body require both feet on the ground. If my students have bad footwork and punch leaning on their front leg, I have them do this drill to punch so they can see where their power comes from."
Load the machine with weight (Bas uses seven plates, but we expect you'll need fewer). Grab the cable handle, face in the opposite direction of the machine, and take a step out so there is about a foot of distance between your back and the machine. First throw 30 straight punches, then 30 hooks to the body, then 30 straight punches again, then 30 fully extended upper cuts – three sets with each arm. Rutten performs these three times a week, along with running exercises.