Friday, 17 June 2011

Conditioning for BJJ Revisited

My good friend, and one of my long time SA based training partners, Andre', kindly agreed to do an article on incorporating kettlebells for conditioning for BJJ. With the huge number of routines and exercises it can be difficult to know where to start and what to focus on.
This is the place to start and revisit often.
p.s. If youre in Durban and want some great kettlebell or conditioning instruction give him a shout.

A conditioning programme can always assist one in your martial art training. The kettlebell offers good value for one's effort.

Pavel Tsatsouline in his superb book Enter The Kettlebell prescribes the programme minimum for people that are starting kettlebell lifting. Programme min is two basic lifts, the Get Up, a pressing exercise and the swing, a pulling exercise, which are done two or three times a week. These exercises are done for time using an interval timer or clock.

The routine would be as follows:

Joint Mobility warm up
5 min get ups
12 min swings

The beauty of this programme is that not only is it forgiving on the demands made on your body, especially if you are training hard at your BJJ but it is also very easy to modify according to ones needs. If you add another two lifts, the snatch and the clean and press you can compile a programme where you can increase or decrease the intensity of the practice sessions.

A routine one can use is the method of doing a light, med and heavy training session during a weekly cycle. It would be as follows;

Monday (light) practice good technique and dont worry about amount of reps done
Joint mobility warm up
5 min get up's - 16 kg bell
12 min snatches - 16 kg bell

Wednesday (med) medium intensity trying to do a few more reps each time
Joint mobility warm up
6 min get up's - 16 kg bell
14 min swings - 20 kg bell

Friday (heavy) Full tilt boogie go for it and push yourself
Joint mobility warm up
Clean and press 5 ladders/4 rungs - 20/24 kg bell
14 min swings - 24/32 kg bell

For the swings i like to start off with 100 two handed swings in a marathon like way and then after a brief rest rep short sprint type bursts of one handed and hand to hand swings.
The snatches can be done using the VO2 max protocol or just for reps.
If the exercises are too easy the bells are not heavy enough. If your form especially your alignment goes the bells are too heavy.
Try to structure the programme on your heavy day so you get between 24 to 48 hours rest before your next practice session.
Doing basic exercises does not mean one is a beginner and as in BJJ it is always good to revisit the basics.


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