BJJ when you're exhausted.

Discussion in 'Grappling / Brazilian Ju Jitsu / Wrestling' started by kuniggety, Sep 2, 2015.

  1. kuniggety

    kuniggety Black Belt

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    My professor tends to say we're really using BJJ when we're exhausted. When we're fresh, we're explosive and strong. When you're tired, it really forces your technique to come through.

    It was a nice observation seeing this come into play today. I rolled with a military combatives instructor for probably 20 minutes straight with no submission. I positionally dominated him but he had more upper body strength and finagled out of a couple attempts of mine (non-locked triangle, an arm triangle, and I might've gotten an arm bar on him but ran into a wall). He asked for the break and we were both exhausted. We stopped for a minute or two and went at it again and I submitted him twice in probably about 5 min. It was a game of attrition and when the strength was gone it was my technique that won through.

    As an addendum, this was no-gi and I train almost exclusively in the gi. I'm hoping to do more no-gi in the future but it really highlighted the differences for me. All of my "grips" and collar chokes were gone... It felt like showing up for a job and having to constantly look back into my tool bag for another tool.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2015
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  2. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I have always found great gains can be made when grappling when exhausted. Your instructor is absolutely right in that you will work your technique more and this is really beneficial!
     
  3. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    This applies to all arts, not just BJJ.
     
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  4. mber

    mber Yellow Belt

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    While I agree that technique trumps power (or perhaps yields power), in BJJ and other grappling arts, there's always going to be some element of brute strength required, if only because there tends to be more limited working room than in standing arts.
     
  5. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    I do a similar training in Kung Fu. but we don't get the 5 minute break. But the purpose is the same, which is to get rid of the dependence of strength that most people have. Once the strength is gone there is only exhaustion and technique left. At this point we are going to either revert back to a non-kung fu fighting style or we are going to actually try to use kung fu techniques.

    My guess anyone that is doing the same type of sparring that you describe, then they will have 2 similar choices. They will either abandon their style or will use the styles techniques. I'm with Dirty dog on this one, I can see it applying to all fighting arts and actually any sport that requires technique and not just brute strength. Say like playing tennis.
     
  6. drop bear

    drop bear Grandmaster

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    Yeah the old saying.

    Nobody goes into a fight wishing they had done less cardio.
     
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  7. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    ha ha ha.. yep. I can definitely say that statement has never entered my mind. I always get a kick out the street fights on youtube when both fighters run out of energy.
     
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  8. kuniggety

    kuniggety Black Belt

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    I might not have been clear. We were sparring for a good 20-30 min straight with no breaks when we finally decided to take a break because he said he wanted some water. We had actually just finished reviewing a new combatives curriculum he had and so we weren't fresh to begin with. We stopped for maybe a minute or two and then when we picked back up it only took me about 5 minutes to submit him twice.

    I completely agree though... I see it applying to a lot of sports/martial arts.
     
  9. JowGaWolf

    JowGaWolf Senior Master

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    Oh ok. I thought the break was 5 minutes.. sorry about that. We go through about the same amount of time . We do 6 rounds of 2 minute of punching or kicking only drills. then we take about a 1 or 2 minute break to get water back into our systems and catch our breath, then we go for another round 6 rounds of 2 minute drills using both kicking and punching techniques in each round. After that it's sparing time. Everyone has to have a minimum of 1 minute and the option to go longer so long as they can still control the punches and kicks.

    Those 20 -30 minute sparring sessions are really good for you. Considering that street fights only last 1 - 3 minutes before someone gets tired or knocked out, you being able to last 20 - 30 minutes makes you beast.

    You can never go wrong when you train harder and longer than what you'll actually use during competition.
     
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  10. kuniggety

    kuniggety Black Belt

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    I work out 6 or 7 days a week but I'm no beast. You just learn to conserve your energy for when you really need it in a grapple. Even if a guy has me in side control, I am catching my breath because I'm not in a scramble. I just wait until his weight shifts for me to make my escape.
     
  11. Pittsburgh Arnis

    Pittsburgh Arnis Yellow Belt

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    I've heard it said that "Fatigue makes cowards of us all."
     
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  12. Skullpunch

    Skullpunch Green Belt

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    When I first started bjj and judo/newaza I had a background in bodybuilding and was very confident in my strength and that confidence was well founded…for the first 2 minutes worth of submission attempts and bad positions I was able to spaz and muscle my way out of before I was completely spent. I've always had high endurance but for the first couple of months of training I had to learn the hard way that endurance does not compensate for a lack of efficient movement - and muscling your way out of everything is about as inefficient as it can get. It has it's place but from my experience that place is usually your last resort, for when you've reacted a split-second too late to properly counter something.

    The amount of strength that the gi nullifies (when the stronger guy doesn't know how to use it) was also a rude awakening. I actually did relatively well on the no gi days (relatively well means I got my a$$ handed to me a bit less than usual) but on the gi days you can imagine my shock the first time I got tapped by someone literally 60 lbs smaller than myself. And he was a brand new blue belt too so it's not like he was even all that experienced, I think he had been training for something like 14 months at the time.
     

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