Working out for BJJ is a subject of great debate. Everyone has their own method, or belief system. BJJ Workouts vary greatly. Some prefer long cardio sessions, others short metcons. Some people swear by circuit type workouts, others olympic weightlifting.
When it comes to BJJ workouts I’ve dabbled with everything. When I first started training full time I did a year of Crossfit main site programming religiously. Crossfit changed my body drastically, I built muscle and lost body fat. Looking back I was missing an important component – periodization. With random, high intensity workouts all year long I never gave my body the opportunity to experience a massive peak. I was just “good” all year round. I never experienced a massive surge of strength and power that can be achieved with periodization.
After I strayed away from crossfit I was introduced to other BJJ Workouts. I tried group circuit training where we would do a variety of BJJ specific exercises compiled into a circuit. While that improved my strength and cardiovascular endurance it was still missing something.
Finally in mid – 2011 I was introduced to Josh Brown from Atlanta athletic club. Josh designed me an 8 week mesocycle aimed at increasing power and explosiveness before the 2011 World Championships. The program included olympic weightlifting, with a lot of specialized, BJJ specific power movements. We also did a metcon at the end of the workout. Josh’s aim was to improve my spinal stabilization, with the 8 week program he focused on a core stabilization training program with dynamic balance and a few secret things I can’t reveal.
The results were insane!
- I increased my vertical resting jump by 20%.
- My powerclean went from 165lbs to 205 lbs 1 rep max.
- I doubled the amount of “Over and Backs” I could complete before failure.
My conclusion is this: If you seek to improve your fitness level for BJJ, consult an expert who specializes in BJJ Workouts. In my BJJ newsletter I include sample workouts and tips that Josh designed for me. Seek someone who has credentials and experience training BJJ Athletes. Josh has a masters degree in Kinesiology and has years of experience training pro tennis players, football players, golfers, etc. Due to the nature of the sport, BJJ workouts are complex and require a high level of knowledge in the field of exercise science.