*Don’t be fooled. The Best way to train MMA is at the Gym. But with this crazy pandemic goin’ on we need other options. Training MMA at home is one of those options.
As I was watching John Danaher’s, Self Mastery: Solo BJJ Training Drills, I came across some VIP info that I think people at home should know about. Getting better outside your Dojo: 3 Directions for your training. He specifically used this 3 step program for jiu-jitsu, but it also translates perfectly for MMA.
I’ma split each tip into 2 sections. One for the broke folks, and the other for the Money Mayweathers.
Without further ado, here are the 3 things you can do to train MMA at home, by yourself.
1) Solo Drills: MMA Specific Movement Skills
We’ll start off with the Top 2 Things you can do with
No Equipment Needed:
- STRIKING – Shadow Boxing
- GRAPPLING – Shadow Grappling
Shadow boxing is what’s more commonly known but shadow grappling is just as important. These 2 drills will help you maintain your movement skills in both the striking and grappling aspects of MMA. To make the best use of these drills you would have to visualize fighting against an imaginary opponent. If you’re just simply performing these movements with no conception of who, what, where, when, why, and how to use these certain movements then you’re just moving with no purpose. You can find tons of shadow boxing and shadow grappling videos on YouTube.
Here’s an excellent MMA shadowing boxing workout that you can train at home.
The best resource for shadow grappling is John Danaher’s, Self Mastery: Solo BJJ Training Drills. You can get it for FREE here.
Now, if you got some money, here are the Essential Training Tools I recommend using.
- Grappling Dummy – for drilling, slamming, throwing, ground strikes
2) Stay In Good Shape
When it comes to staying in shape it’s actually fairly simple, but difficult for many to follow. Know that, people respond differently to different programs. There’s no 1 right answer, they all work well. In reality, not one program has more dramatic results than the other. Just goes to show that it has less to do with the program, and more to do with how dedicated the person is to stick with the program. Best thing to do is what you enjoy & what suits your body well. Whether it be weightlifting, calisthenics, gymnastics, etc, as long as you incorporate, mobility, strength & conditioning into your program.
Strength & Conditioning
For me, I like to keep shit practical. Majority of my conditioning is a byproduct of my MMA training. Sure, you can add a lil’ roadwork, hit the track, or run hill sprints, but there’s no better way to build cardio than to train within the sport itself. In addition, you can increase certain elements like speed and power depending on how you perform your moves. For example, hitting the heavy bag as fast as you can will help with speed. Hitting it as hard as you can will increase power AKA strength. At this rate, cardio work is unavoidable. And when practicing high kicks you’ll even be able to utilize your flexibility.
For the no-money people:
There are tons of FREE heavy bag drills on Youtube that you can train at home.
MMAShredded’s Heavy Bag Workout is one of my favorites.
When it comes to mobility I like to follow a lot of Ido Portal’s Protocol of Loaded Progressive Stretching. You thought yoga and a fuckin’ foam roller was all you needed? Nah man, think again. The “best bang for your buck” stretching is incorporated with resistance in where your muscles should be ACTIVE / ACTIVATED. Not relaxed and taken too lightly. Remember that Mobility = Flexibility + Strength. We don’t just want the middle splits, we want to be able to hold a high kick straight up in the air as well.
Here’s a beginner program of LPS…Looks simple, but difficult for anyone experiencing early signs of rigor mortis.
Whether you are a vegan, vegetarian, carnivore paleoan, ketorian, intermittent fastivorian, you can choose whatever diet WORKS BEST FOR YOU. Believe it or not, some people can tolerate carbs better than others. Meaning that they can eat a McDonald’s Big Mac, with large fries and a non diet coke for a week and still not gain any weight. For starters, I suggest experimenting with the Paleo Diet first and then ADD or SUBTRACT your needs from there. But, in my experience, the #1 health tip ANYONE can benefit from is to eliminate sugar and processed foods from your diet altogether! And basically just EAT REAL FOOD.
If you got the Moola:
I recommend you look into these resources right here:
Solo Heavy Bag Training By MMAShredded.
Online Coaching (Corset Method / Loaded Progressive Stretching) By Ido Portal
The Carnivore Diet By Shawn Baker
Carnivore Coach MeatRX
3) Increase Your Knowledge
“Skill is embodied knowledge.” – John Danaher
As we all know, the best way to gain knowledge is in the gym. But when you train MMA at home, videos are a close second. Watch videos as much as you can. But not just any ol’ random video! Sure, watching Dropper vs. Sick Boy on Felony Fights can be somewhat motivating. But, I advise you to watch Past/Present World champions in any combat sport. Fight Breakdowns and Analysis. Training videos. Insightful interviews. And Most importantly, instructional videos from great fighters and great coaches. When you cant work on skill you should always be obtaining knowledge. Because, “Knowledge is the precursor to skill and skill is the ultimate determinant of who wins and who loses in this sport.” – John Danaher.
Here are some of the most reliable resources on the net:
PowerfulJRE – THE Best Conversions with MMA Fighters/Coaches, Nutritionists, and any other profession you can possibly think of.
Lawrence Kenshin – Breakdowns for striking arts.
Jack Slack – Fight Analysis for MMA & striking arts.
TheWeasle – In-depth fighting analysis on current high-caliber combat competitions.
Tristar Gym – Sound advice from One of The Best MMA Coaches Ever – Firas Zahabi
Ramsey Dewey – Answers the most simple questions with the most intriguing answers.
MMAShredded – One of The Best MMA Tutorials, Tactics, & Drills, backed up by Real Sparring Footage.
fightTIPS – The Most Popular MMA source for tutorials, workouts, and drills.
BJJ Fanatics – You can find John Danaher’s Free content here.
MindSmash – Most Insightful Fight Topics
Ido Portal – #1 Source for Movement concepts
John Danaher – Best BJJ/grappling concepts
PAID Content – Websites
BJJ Fanatics – BJJ Instructionals; Most Notable: John Danaher, Gordon Ryan
Dynamics Striking – Striking Instructionals; Most Notable: Anderson Silva; Saenchai, Teddy Atlas
Fanatic Wrestling – Wrestling Instructionals; Most Notable: Henry Cejudo, Ben Askren
Judo Fanatics – Judo Instructionals; Most Notable: Travis Stevens
In The End
That’s how you can train MMA at home. If you stick with those 3 things you’ll find that once you come back to the gym you’re moving better than before, you’ll be in great shape, and you have knowledge that you didn’t have previously. As a result, you’ll also find that the skills come very easy to you. Because of this, you’ll go through a rapid phase of growth. Which is the best part of your training. The whole idea is to enhance your performance.
The only time people come back worse than they were before is when they do nothing and abandon the sport completely. So, as long as you keep your body in shape and your mind in the game, you’ll come back stronger and fully prepared to be back in the gym.