Other/Mixed Martial Arts without burnout?

Other strength modalities (e.g., Clubs), mixed strength modalities (e.g., combined kettlebell and barbell), other goals (flexibility)

Tbone77

Level 4 Valued Member
Hello all ,
here is my 2 cents after training in BJJ for 21 years ( getting my black belt in 2014) and competing , and sometimes winning!, at an international and world level. So here goes.....
-What are your goals?
-BJJ will destroy your body if you let it
-If you plan to compete , the level today is insane and you need to be the total package of strength and conditioning to hang with the best. -There are no drug tests as well ,so do with that information what you will...
-Your partners will determine your experience and success
Perhaps someone else can chime in with comparable experience. This is not intended to be rude , but when say a purple belt goes on like they know everything about the sport I tend to listen very critically, success leaves clues , listen to what the top guys have to say about training and competing.
Take care all
 

Tbone77

Level 4 Valued Member
Also, interesting side note:
With the BJJ classes returning to somewhat “normal “ for the time being , I was having a conversation with the evening instructor(2x IBJFF world champion) and he stated that he was surprised how winded everyone got during the class. I know a lot of these guys have been focusing on weights, kettlebells ect. during the lockdown thinking they would come back Superman but everything is so darn specific . So what my long winded story is all about is if you want to get better at jiu jitsu , spend every free minute you have on the mat.
 

kiwipete

Level 7 Valued Member
Thank you for all of your advice!

I'll try out some other schools and see how they roll (pun intended)
 

North Coast Miller

Level 8 Valued Member
I went and tried a Japanese Ju Jitsu class last week. I've dabbled in aikido, boxing and judo in the past without finding an art that felt 'like me' and thought this was worth a go.

I completely under-estimated how sore and grumpy it would make me for 4 days afterward...

Paraphrasing , my wife said, "You are not doing it again because I'm not living with you being so grumpy and tired".

My 20 year old brain did not appreciate it was working in a 40 year old body!

Does anyone have advice about how to train MA's in a way that doesn't destroy you?

The JJJ session was pretty much 30min of push ups, jumping squats, crunches ad nauseam - then ground fighting and self defence techniques for the next hour.

I was extremely restrained, tapping often and early. Ego was very much left at home - nothing to prove (literally ha ha)

I think the body weight stuff combined with the ground fighting just destroyed any recovery capacity I have last week.

I'm disciplined with going to bed early, eating good food and looking after myself.

I love moving my body but I can't see that type of training being sustainable over the long term - especially if it leaves me no energy to be happy to be around nor able / willing to do easy strength and easy running each week (which I love BTW).

Has anyone else had this 'recovery challenge' from MA training? And if so, what ways did you go about solving it?

Change schools? Change MA? Other ideas? Appreciate your experience and ideas 👍
Change MA. Aside from MuayThai none of my classes were super tough on conditioning plus impact. Some of the Kali classes could get a little rough but nothing too outrageous. Compared to what I went through in wrestling it was easy.

This being offset somewhat depending on how hard the sparring and contact drills are. I got hit pretty hard in Silat class a bunch of times.

The downside is that if you don't do physical training on your own you'll have a tough time coming up to speed. Also some days of the weekly schedule were FAR more intensive on the conditioning, and I normally skipped these anyway.

BJJ and to a somewhat lesser extent JJJ are ground game intensive, therefore conditioning intensive in ways non-sport striking traditions are not...depending on the teacher.
 

Rúben Sousa

Level 2 Valued Member
I went and tried a Japanese Ju Jitsu class last week. I've dabbled in aikido, boxing and judo in the past without finding an art that felt 'like me' and thought this was worth a go.

I completely under-estimated how sore and grumpy it would make me for 4 days afterward...

Paraphrasing , my wife said, "You are not doing it again because I'm not living with you being so grumpy and tired".

My 20 year old brain did not appreciate it was working in a 40 year old body!

Does anyone have advice about how to train MA's in a way that doesn't destroy you?

The JJJ session was pretty much 30min of push ups, jumping squats, crunches ad nauseam - then ground fighting and self defence techniques for the next hour.

I was extremely restrained, tapping often and early. Ego was very much left at home - nothing to prove (literally ha ha)

I think the body weight stuff combined with the ground fighting just destroyed any recovery capacity I have last week.

I'm disciplined with going to bed early, eating good food and looking after myself.

I love moving my body but I can't see that type of training being sustainable over the long term - especially if it leaves me no energy to be happy to be around nor able / willing to do easy strength and easy running each week (which I love BTW).

Has anyone else had this 'recovery challenge' from MA training? And if so, what ways did you go about solving it?

Change schools? Change MA? Other ideas? Appreciate your experience and ideas 👍
Sounds a little strange, but I found over the years, to expand our habilities, the best is probably to pratice at the same time a full contact and a self defense/war art. Trying to cover everything.

For example: Sambo and Systema.
Or kyokushin and Genbukan Ninpo.
Or BJJ and Silat/Krav maga.
Wtv...

This way I think that you are always able to learn both with and without rules, having no limits, but also getting your timing and realistic scenario at the point.
 

Rúben Sousa

Level 2 Valued Member
Sounds a little strange, but I found over the years, to expand our habilities, the best is probably to pratice at the same time a full contact and a self defense/war art. Trying to cover everything.

For example: Sambo and Systema.
Or kyokushin and Genbukan Ninpo.
Or BJJ and Silat/Krav maga.
Wtv...

This way I think that you are always able to learn both with and without rules, having no limits, but also getting your timing and realistic scenario at the point.
I have read (probably in the book fighting man of Japan) that samurais did that.
They praticed both Sumo and jujutsu for unarmed combat (if iam not mistaken).
But you can also see that in Thailand, where they have muay thai for the ringue and muay boran for war. Or the KGB that is said to pratice both Sambo and systema. We guess...
 

guardian7

Level 6 Valued Member
1. What are your goals?

First choice.

I recommend taking a Muay Thai class but don't participate in sparring sessions. Most real boxing or Muay Thai gyms have free practice time that you can do heavy bad work on your own or work pads with a partner. I did this in my mid-40s until the virus hit and will definitely go back.

No, this is not real fighting but at our age the goal is not competition. No martial art or combat sport is true self-defense anyway. Sure it helps but that can't be the main reason if you are taking something like BJJ.

Most martial arts instructors don't understand BASIC exercise science and blindly follow tradition. Skills based training under exhaustion is not effective. The research is clear. It should be light warmup / skills based training /free practice, padholding/light sparring. Metcon conditioning should be at the end and functional. If you want to simulate fight exhaustion do that at the end of the class. It is a no-brainer. BJJ rolling is exhausting enough.

Second choice

Do a weapons based martial art like Kali or Escrima. Fun and easier on the body. Weapons flows are almost therapeutic. I have only experienced seminars but I am sure others will agree.
 

sizzlefuzz

Level 6 Valued Member
I have thought about this question for a while since seeing the original post....

The best thing you can do is to find something that is in line with your goals. BJJ & Judo both have a strong competitive aspect to them and can also be rather addicting. To be honest, I love nothing more than training and competing in jiu jitsu but it will break you if you let it. While a lot of people in jiu jitsu say things like "leave your ego at the door" and "jiu jitsu makes you a better person" there are a lot of bad coaches and 'mat bullies' out that that can make life terrible for novice practitioners.

In your case, I think something like a boxing or muay thai fitness class would be what you are looking for. Several years ago I used to go to them (and enjoy it quite a bit) because it was just fast-paced, up tempo workout that was also very fun.
 

Ken_

Level 4 Valued Member
A friend of mine who is probably in his 50's started taking BJJ recently. He told his instructor he just wanted to do ground work, no take downs, and his instructor was cool with that. To protect his fingers he does not grapple in the normal way but grabs the opponent by putting his hand around his neck and things like that, no grabbing of clothing. He is loving it.
 

DaveS

Level 3 Valued Member
I went and tried a Japanese Ju Jitsu class last week. I've dabbled in aikido, boxing and judo in the past without finding an art that felt 'like me' and thought this was worth a go.

I completely under-estimated how sore and grumpy it would make me for 4 days afterward...

Paraphrasing , my wife said, "You are not doing it again because I'm not living with you being so grumpy and tired".

My 20 year old brain did not appreciate it was working in a 40 year old body!

Does anyone have advice about how to train MA's in a way that doesn't destroy you?

The JJJ session was pretty much 30min of push ups, jumping squats, crunches ad nauseam - then ground fighting and self defence techniques for the next hour.

I was extremely restrained, tapping often and early. Ego was very much left at home - nothing to prove (literally ha ha)

I think the body weight stuff combined with the ground fighting just destroyed any recovery capacity I have last week.

I'm disciplined with going to bed early, eating good food and looking after myself.

I love moving my body but I can't see that type of training being sustainable over the long term - especially if it leaves me no energy to be happy to be around nor able / willing to do easy strength and easy running each week (which I love BTW).

Has anyone else had this 'recovery challenge' from MA training? And if so, what ways did you go about solving it?

Change schools? Change MA? Other ideas? Appreciate your experience and ideas 👍
Seems to me the issue is just doing too much, too soon and so left you wiped out. If you suddenly jumped into kettlebell swings for the first time and tried to do 200 of them metcon style first time it woukd wipe you out for days too.

So it’s not so much the activity but the intensity and volume being inappropriate for your ability.

As many have said already, some arts are more physically demanding than others but any art could me made ridiculously hard or easy depending on how the session parameters are set up.

Sounds like you should discuss the issue with the instructor and find out if they are ok with you taking things at your own pace rather than desperately trying to keep up with everyone else or if they dismiss such reasonable logic then find a different club that use common sense as their basis rather than ego!

Definitely a time and a place for harder training mind you but only when your ready for it and just like strongfirst/Pavel principles, always for a specific purpose and cycled to be sustainable.

Just my take on it, stay positive and ‘find your path’ as much to be gained 💪
 

kiwipete

Level 7 Valued Member
Seems to me the issue is just doing too much, too soon and so left you wiped out. If you suddenly jumped into kettlebell swings for the first time and tried to do 200 of them metcon style first time it woukd wipe you out for days too.

So it’s not so much the activity but the intensity and volume being inappropriate for your ability.

As many have said already, some arts are more physically demanding than others but any art could me made ridiculously hard or easy depending on how the session parameters are set up.

Sounds like you should discuss the issue with the instructor and find out if they are ok with you taking things at your own pace rather than desperately trying to keep up with everyone else or if they dismiss such reasonable logic then find a different club that use common sense as their basis rather than ego!

Definitely a time and a place for harder training mind you but only when your ready for it and just like strongfirst/Pavel principles, always for a specific purpose and cycled to be sustainable.

Just my take on it, stay positive and ‘find your path’ as much to be gained 💪
Fair point. It's the shock of how much recovery I needed afterwards that probably hurt me the most.

I'm giving a different Japanese Ju Jitsu club a go tomorrow with that in mind... Let's see what happens!
 
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