Covid-19 has brought the fitness industry to a halt in most parts of the world. Contact sports have been hit especially hard. In martial arts, we often work with partners whether that’s trying out new grappling techniques or holding pads for each other. Community is such an important part of combat sports and it has been really hard to adapt our training in quarantine and without our teammates
That being said, we are a resilient bunch and luckily, we have always been taught how to adapt to any given situation.
Training without pads or partners can be difficult, but it is by no means impossible. Here are a few tips for training solo with and without equipment:
Luckily, in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, plenty of warm up drills are done without any equipment at all. Shrimping, sit outs, triangles and rolls, can all be done alone, all you need is a mat or soft area to practice on.Other drills such as spider guard and lassos can be done with your belt looped at the feet, while a chair can be a really innovative tool to practice koala scoots, berimbolos, and butterfly sweeps by maneuvering the legs of the chair.
As for stand up striking, shadowboxing has always been a pillar of any practice and is the perfect addition to an at home training program. If you have light weights you can add them, but they aren't necessary. If you have a framework that is already used in your gym, try to follow that as best as possible. If not, 3 x 3 min rounds is always a good place to start. You can stretch/mobilise during breaks or do conditioning depending on what part of the workout you place it.
The best way to develop your game is to work on your weaknesses. Whether grappling or striking, choose an area that you have had difficulty with and spend time on it, preferably in a mirror so you can notice any mistakes and self correct. Also, make sure to keep body conditioning a part of the program, even if it’s just the basics: push-ups, sit-ups, planks and squats. If you have weights, you can add greater variety and intensity but bodyweight alone will also be sufficient.
Overall fitness is the hardest to maintain in a contained space. To keep cardio up, running is one of the easiest and best options. If you’re feeling strong, hill sprints to get you fit fairly quickly. Sprint up for 10-20 seconds and jog back. Try to do at least 5 sets. If these aren’t feasible, tabata is a great alternative for keeping cardio fitness and strength at decent levels. Fighters use it in fight preparation on the bag, but the timing and intensity can be used for any type of workout. The formula is simple: 20 seconds of work, followed by 10 seconds of rest.
Choose two high-intensity exercises, perform exercise A for 20 seconds, rest ten, then perform exercise B for twenty seconds before resting again. That’s 1 round. Try to perform 8 rounds before changing the exercise.
Gym restrictions due to Corona virus have been hugely frustrating but training solo can be improved by recruiting a virtual training buddy to stay accountable to. How is everyone maintaining training motivation at home? Do you have any drills that you are seeing progress with?