The Benefits of Grappling Dummies for Judo, BJJ and MMA Athletes


There is nothing worse in MMA than going to training and getting stuck with a partner who complains and takes ages to transition between drills etc. One of the best aspects of the grappling dummy is the fact that it doesn't complain, you can throw it, kick it and punch it and it just keeps getting up and it doesn't mind.

Whether you are a Brazilian jujitsu fighter, a Judo player or an MMA practitioner a grappling dummy is something you should look into getting. A dummy is great especially if there are times when you cannot get to training and you feel like doing some throws, position training and submissions. There are literally hundreds of techniques you can do including throws, takedowns, submissions, drills, ground and pound, punches, kicks as well as some really hard workouts that will have your heart rate through the roof.

I own a 2 legged legend grappling dummy (from Australia's Grappling Store) but they do also come in MMA style that is a base rather than being two legged. There are many different styles of dummies.

I personally have used a Suples dummy and a Legend dummy and I believe the Legend dummy is much better due to the fact that it has two arms, two legs, and feels like more of a person when you throw it.

What you do with the grappling dummy will depend on your style of fighting. If you are a Brazilian jujitsu practitioner than you will do more submissions and position training, a Judoka will more often than not throw the dummy and an MMA or self defence trainer will kick, elbow and punch the dummy to all day long.

What to do with a dummy?


For judoka I recommend doing a lot of throwing and transition drills with the dummy. Throws such as Osoto gari, Ippon Seoi nage, Ogoshi and Harai goshi are all fundamental Judo throws that you can do with the dummy. Other more advanced techniques you can do include Uchimata, Tani otoshi, Koshi guruma and Tai otoshi. You can even work a variety if combinations such as Osoto gari into Harai goshi or Uchimata into Ouchi gari. Due to the fact that the dummy has two bendable arms you can also dress him in a gi and work all your throws using a gi. This is great for throws such as Tsuri komi goshi and Morote seoi nage.

Transitions are also imperative for all judoka and therefore transitioning into Kesa gatame and Juji gatame are a must when MMA training with the grappling dummy.


Brazilian Jujitsu practitioners (Ne Waza)

A grappling dummy is an awesome asset for Brazilian jujitsu players. If you are looking at developing your positional and submission skills then I believe a grappling dummy is exactly what you need. I highly recommend practicing position training such as advancing from scarf hold to side control and then to mount. You can also drill positions such as knee ride to knee ride as well as half guard and guard passing. The best part about using the dummy I'd the amount of receptions you can do of various submissions such as knee ride to arm bar as well as close side and far side arm bars. One of my favourite submissions to do with the dummy is straight arm locks and figure fours submissions from side control.

I personally practice a lot of gi chokes on my dummy especially the basis collar choke from mount as well as chokes from side control.

MMA Athletes

A grappling dummy is great if you are an MMA fighter. This is due to the fact that you can punch it, ground and pound it and elbow it all day long and it will never complain.

Great drills include superman punches from the guard, punches from guard and elbows from the side control position. Because the Legend dummy has arms you can also advance to a crucifix position and throws elbows and punches to head. One of the most common attacks that the MMA fighters do at my club is knees to the body before advancing to mount and then throwing punches from the mount position. You can also stand the dummy up against a wall or cage (if you have one available), and practicing cage takedowns, Thai clinches, dirty boxing and much more in a position that really simulates a really MMA fight.


The Legend dummies come in 30kg, 40kg & 55kg. Therefore you can do some incredible workouts that will have you fitter than you ever thought possible. Workouts such as the maximum amount of throws in 1 minute or 1 throw, 10 sprawls, 1 throw, 9 sprawls etc will have you puffing like you wouldn't believe. You can also perform fireman's carry squats, Zercher squats, shoulder presses and many more exercises that you can incorporate in between throwing, submitting or ground and pounding the dummy. Many MMA athletes do similar workouts to the new 'Cage fitness' regime but the main problem with Cage fitness is they do not include any submission attempts, or proper positional drilling (which are a huge part of MMA.)




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