No Gym… No Problem

If anyone knows me, they know that I like to talk and meet new people.  When I am training, I always like to find out more about the people that I am training with other than their favorite move to tap me out with.  I like to find out things like how long they have been training, their family, and especially if they are strength training.  I have asked some of the top competitors that I have taken privates with, like Claudio Calasans, Demian Maia, Andre Galvo, the Mendes Brothers, etc, this same questions and the answer is always the same…YES.

So why is it that most of the people that we find ourselves training with on an every day basis at the academy, are not strength training.  Here are my top 2 answers that I am given:

1.    Strength is not needed for BJJ
2.    Don’t have the extra money for a gym membership

Both are fine answers, but unfortunately completely wrong.  Let us address one issue at a time, the fact of the matter is BJJ is a physical sport that is full of grabbing, wrestling, and lets not forget mental toughness.  Yes I agree that BJJ has always and will always be based on leverage, but lets not forget that without the ability to fight off the feeling of the lactic acid buildup in your muscles, you could possible lose a match in the final minutes…a match that should very well of been yours for the taking.


If this happens enough, this could be very frustrating, but lets say you don’t compete…how is strength training going to help you?  The answer is very simple, everyone has had the feeling on the mat of gassing out and when you gas out the first thing that gets thrown out the window is your technique.   All you can worry about is saving position or just even breathing.  Strength training will not only have you live longer and feel better, but also have you train longer and feel much better after training sessions.

Next objection is money.  Money always seems to be an objection no matter what topic we are talking about.  Yes I understand that joining a gym could be expensive and yes I understand that hiring a personal trainer is even MORE expensive, but that doesn’t mean that you can not train at the comfort of your own home.  You don’t have to have some crazy infomercial products or even special (and when I say special…I mean expensive) gym equipment.  All you need is a room, some water, and the desire to become better.  If this sounds like you than try my new 4-Week BJJ At Home Workout:  

4-Week BJJ At-Home Workout

Frequency:  3 days per week

1.    Monday, Wednesday, and Friday is a perfect setup, but I would highly recommend that you strength train on the days that you are not on the mat.  If this is not possible and you need to train on the days that you train BJJ than make sure that there is at least 6-8 hours in between training sessions to let your body recover
2.    Please remember to foam roll and static stretch before starting your Dynamic Warm-Up

Dynamic Warm-Up
(This may look long, but should only take you 5-8 minutes

1.    High Knees x 20 seconds
2.    Forward Lunge with Rotation x 5 reps on each leg
3.    Reverse Lunge with Overhead Extension x 5 reps on each leg
4.    Side Lunge x 5 reps on each leg
5.    Body Squats x 10 reps
6.    Frankenstein Walks x 5 reps on each leg
7.    Jumping Jacks x 20 seconds
8.    Gate Swings x 20 seconds
9.    Pogo Hops x 20 seconds
10.    Inch Worm x 5 reps

Strength Training
(No break in between UB, LB, and Core.  Once you are done with all 3…Repeat for a total of 3 times)

Upper Body:    Push-Ups with a Clap x 10
Lower Body:    Hip Presses with 2-second pause at top x 10
Core:        Plank x 1 minute

Upper Body:    Body Weight Chin-Ups x MAX
Lower Body:    Jump Squats x 10
Core:        Side Planks x 30 seconds on each side

(30-60 seconds rest between sets)

Day 1:    4 x 50 yard Sprints
Day 2:    4 x 75 yard Sprints
Day 3:    4 x 100 yard Sprints

(Every stretch should be maintained for 20 seconds each)

1.    Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch
2.    Pec Stretch on Wall
3.    Tricep Stretch on Wall
4.    90/90 Stretch
5.    Hamstring Stretch on Wall

This workout should not take you more than 30-40 minutes.  If it does, that means you are taking too much time in between your sets.

Always remember that more is not better…better is better.

Try it out and notice the immediate impact on the mat.

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