BJJ

A Complete Guide to Resistance Band Workouts for BJJ Athletes

A Complete Guide to Resistance Band Workouts for BJJ Athletes

1. Resistance Band and BJJ Training Regime

In the modern world of changing and dynamic training options for martial arts, resistance bands are somewhat underestimated but a new, effective, and optimized way of exercise. Generally, people are confused about the efficiency of resistance bands and their ability to help to build and increase muscle strength.

“But the grass is greener on the resistance band side of the training.”

Resistance bands are not only proven to build muscles but also can potentially assist you to tone your muscles with minimum equipment and at the ease of your home. No one can afford a portable/ flying gym except Dwayne Johnson aka “The Rock”. But the resistance band training regime can work as a “Portable Gym” for you.

Resistance bands are lightweight, easily portable, and inexpensive elastic bands which are very well-known for strengthening workouts. These are used by BJJ athletes, and patients with muscular injuries. Resistance bands are helpful for active athletes to strengthen and shape their muscles.

2. What is the Purpose of Resistance Bands? 

Resistance bands provide an easy and effective way to strengthen your muscles. These provide the best way for body conditioning.

“Resistance bands work as customized physical therapy and 24/7 available training partners & whole equipment.”

These are easily portable so you can do your daily exercises anywhere. Furthermore, resistance bands provide a complete workout that involves all body muscles.

BJJ athletes use resistance bands in their workout schedules as they need muscular strength and conditioning. They also use resistance bands for their warm-up sessions. But if used after proper guidance and training, resistance bands are more beneficial than warmups. This is a simple, easy but effective way to activate your muscles.

3. Is it Beneficial to Use a Resistance Band Daily?

Resistance bands are an easy way to get a complete body workout. But it is recommended to have a planned rest day from the resistance band workout. For beginners, a resistance band workout is suggested three times a week.

Because the body needs a proper rest period to recover from the aftermath of physical activity. But according to the body's potential and desired targets, the number can be increased from 3 to 6 times a week.      

4. Benefits of Resistance Bands Workouts

Like dumbbells, kettlebells, and other simple workouts, resistance bands are also one of the simple types of equipment which provide easy and result-producing workouts. Here we enlist some benefits of resistance band workouts. 

4.1. Ensure Balance and Stability

While doing resistance band workouts, your body has to maintain balance and stability. To stable your body, you have to activate your stability muscles. No matter whether you are targeting which area of the body by doing resistance band workouts, your core muscles are all the time involved. In this manner, resistance bands ensure core stability.   

4.2. Increase Mobility

Resistance band workouts are more than just muscle-strengthening activities. These help to move body muscles beyond their normal limits and increase the frame of motion. These movements of muscles ensure muscle conditioning and flexibility.  

4.3. Therapy Bands

Resistance bands are also known as therapy bands due to their use in the rehabilitation of damaged muscles. Furthermore, resistance muscles are effective as a low-impact strength workout for those who just injured their muscles. Resistance bands provide them with a safe and easy way to do exercise and recover their muscle durability and firmness. 

4.4. Variety of Workouts

Various people leave their workout routine when they feel bored. This is not the case with resistance bands. Resistance bands provide a variety of workouts for different body muscles. 

4.5. Inexpensive and Easily Portable

Resistance band workouts can be done in any place as you can take your resistance band anywhere. These are portable and very inexpensive. There is no need to go to the gym for this exercise.  

5. Types of Resistance Bands

Resistance bands have a diverse variety and range. When you take your first step to start a resistance band workout, it is crucial to figure out which type of resistance band is good for you. Here are some of the types of resistance bands.  

5.1. Sheet Bands

Sheet bands are latex sheets that are used as therapy bands for those who have suffered a muscle injury and use these bands for rehabilitation and recovery purposes. Those people who just started resistance band workouts for strength are recommended to use sheet bands. 

5.2. Eight Bands

The eight resistance bands got their name because of their shape as digit 8. Both free ends of a resistance band are tied in the center of the band. This type of resistance band is used by those athletes who shifted from weight lifting to resistance bands for muscle building.    

5.3. Loop Bands

Loop bands look like big rubber bands because of their circular shape. Loop bands are available in the market in multiple sizes and colors.

“Bigger-sized loops are effective for upper and lower-body workouts.”

5.4. The Pull-up Bands

The pull-up band is a thicker and more resistant band that needs a lot of power to pull. These types of bands involve more muscle and are more challenging and also helpful for shaping your body.

The Pull-up bands are also available with handles. Handles enhance the variety of possible workouts with ease and safety.

“These handles at both ends of the resistance band help you make your workout more productive and effective.”

5.5. Mini Bands

Mini-resistance bands are very small loops but they provide a dynamic workout experience. They are helpful to increase the potential to handle heavy weight by ensuring the strength of the lower body. Mini bands are tough to pull and are equal to the experience of lifting heavy weights.

5.6. Tube Bands

Tube bands are tubes of rubber that are denser than other resistance bands and available with handles.

“Tube Bands provide resistance suited for shoulders and bicep workouts.”

Tube bands are one of the famous varieties of resistance bands. If you are going to add resistance band workouts to your daily routine, tube bands are the necessary ones to include.

6. How to Choose the Right Resistance Band

To start a resistance band workout, it is important to know which band is suitable for your workout and which helps you to attain your target. You can take notes from the internet or also take guidelines from an instructor or someone who has proper information and experience in using resistance bands. Because choosing the right resistance band for your workout will increase the effectiveness of your workout.

If you are a BJJ athlete and want to add resistance band workouts to your daily routine, you should start with a lighter resistance band. Different colors indicate different densities and strengths of resistance bands. For example, yellow indicates the lighter band while black indicates the heavier intensity. But this color scheme and quality may vary from brand to brand.

Band quality also matters a lot. The band should not be sticky during the workout. Try to purchase good quality bands. Heavier bands prove less sticky than lighter bands.

Resistance bands also vary in composition. If resistance bands are made of elastic fabric, these types of bands are effective for lower-body workouts. Because elastic fiber bands do not slide or roll up. While the rubber latex bands are effective for upper body workouts as these can be stretched more.

7. How Resistance Bands are Helpful for BJJ Athletes? 

BJJ athletes have a planned schedule for their daily workout routine. They have various strengthening and conditioning workouts, and training and rolling sessions in their daily routine. During their training sessions, they learn multiple techniques which include movements of almost complete body muscles.

If their muscles are not strong and conditioned or they do not perform workouts to raise their potential, they will easily be subjected to severe injuries during training. Let's see how resistance bands are helpful for BJJ athletes in their gym.

7.1. Body Conditioning and Muscular Strength of BJJ Athletes

Their muscles are at risk of being damaged during rolling and competitions. To ensure safe training and reduce the risk of injuries, BJJ athletes perform various strengthening and conditioning workouts.

resistance bands can help them not only in strengthening their muscles but also warm up before their training or competition. resistance bands give a complete body workout for such athletes.  

7.2. Flexibility and Mobility to Perform Various Techniques 

Resistance bands are also helpful in increasing the flexibility and mobility of the body. BJJ athletes, when performing various techniques, have flexible body muscles that help them to move their body out of frame. So that they can perform and learn all the BJJ techniques perfectly without any injury.

7.3. Raise the Potential to Resist Submission

Resistance bands also help to increase the potential of the body. High potential will ensure great escapes and resistance to submission during fights and training. Furthermore, increased body potential also helps to maintain an uncomfortable body position during the fight. 

7.4. Best Workout for Cardio Conditioning  

Cardio conditioning involves the increased potential of the heart and lungs during hectic workouts. BJJ athletes perform various cardio conditioning workouts to increase the potential of their heart and lungs so that they will get an efficient supply of blood during training. Resistance bands are one of the best cardio conditioning workouts. 

8. Resistance Band Workouts

When grapplers train for BJJ competitions, they focus on various aspects like body conditioning, strong gripping, and fast sweep techniques. Here we have some resistance band workouts that target various aspects of training.

8.1. Resistance Band Workout for Endurance and Conditioning

I) Squat With Overhead Press

This resistance band exercise involves the majority of the body muscles. This workout activates and strengthens multiple muscles like arms, shoulders, glutes, thighs, and abs. Every muscle will be involved completely during the workout.

This workout helps BJJ athletes strengthen and condition their whole body muscles which is the prerequisite of training and competition.

Starting Position

Grasp the handles of the resistance band with both hands and anchor the middle under your feet. Your feet should be shoulder distance apart. Now move your hands by pulling resistance bands upward and keep them straight to your shoulders. Ensure your palms are in an inward direction. This is the starting position.  

How to Do?

  • Start with a squat position.
  • As you stand up from the squat, move your hands above your head and join them.
  • Now again return to the squat position slowly and move your hands straight to the shoulder.   
  • This is one rep. Perform the exercise for 2 minutes without rest and repeat the process.

Targeted Regions

This workout affects the following regions of the body

  • The Primary Targets
    • Lower back
    • Core
    • Thighs
  • The Secondary Target
    • Arm
    • Chest muscles
    • Oblique.

Targeted Muscles

Targeted muscles in squats with the overhead press are.

  • Hamstrings
  • Quadriceps
  • Shoulders
  • Triceps
  • Calves
  • Glutes
  • Hips

Reps and Sets

Perform 2-3 sets of 8-12 reps.

II) Resistance Band Hammer Curl

Resistance band hammer curl is helpful for Jiu-Jitsu practitioners as it improves grabbing practices. Furthermore, it is also very helpful to condition shoulder muscles. By pulling the resistance band, practitioners ensure the endurance of their deltoids. When they are on the mat, they will use arm muscles to strangle their opponents with great strength.

Starting Position

Hold the resistance band under your feet. Keep your feet at shoulder distance apart. Hold the handles of the band in both of your hands. Keep standing straight. This is the starting position.  

How to Do?

  • Once you are in the starting position.
  • Move your hands towards your shoulders by pulling the band.
  • Again move the hands to the starting position. 
  • Do not touch your hand to your shoulders. This is not the requirement.
  • Try to keep your whole body static. Do not move your leg or core. 

Targeted Regions

The forearm is the targeted region for hammer curl-resistance band workouts.

Targeted Muscles

The targeted muscles for this workout are

  • Brachialis
  • Brachioradialis
  • Bicep

Reps and Sets

Perform 2-3 sets of this workout, which includes 8-15 reps.  

III) Upright Rowing With Resistance Band

Resistance bands upright row muscles workout is very effective for muscle strength and muscle building. Furthermore, this workout ensures flexibility in the shoulder muscles. This workout is also helpful for upper back balance and stability.

Starting Position

Start with a standing position and hold the resistance band beneath your feet. To hold the resistance band and cease its movements, place it just under the foot arches. Hold the handles of the band in both hands and keep standing straight. This is your starting position. 

How to Do

  • Once you are in your starting position, move the hands in the upward direction and pull the resistance band until your hands reach in front of your chin.
  • Make sure your palms face outwardly while holding the band.
  • Try to keep your body static. Just move your arms and shoulders to pull the resistance band. 
  • Again move the hands to the starting position. This is one repeat.
  • Repeat the process.

Targeted Regions

The main focus of this workout is the following regions.

  • Shoulders
  • Core
  • Upper back

Targeted Muscles

The targeted muscles of upright rowing with resistance bands are

  • Deltoids
  • Rhomboids
  • Trapezius Muscles

Reps and Sets

Perform 3-5 sets of this workout, which includes 8-12 reps.

8.2. Resistance Band Workout for Stability

I) Resistance Band Kneeling Shoulder Press

A resistance band kneeling shoulder press workout is very effective for the deltoid muscles. It also ensures core stability and muscular strength in the shoulder. This workout is also well known for improving balance. 

Starting Position

Balance your body on your knees and toes. Use a loop-resistance band. Hold the resistance band beneath your knees. Keep the mat beneath your knees to avoid friction and place the band in its place.

Place the other part of the loop-resistance band on your palms. Your palms must face upward towards the sky and your elbows must be bent. Keep your hands just above your shoulders. This is your starting position.    

How to Do

  • Once you are in your starting position, move your ribs down as in the exhaling position. Keep your glutes squeezed.
  • Hold the band and pull it in the upward direction until your arms become straight.
  • Again move the hands to the starting position. This is one rep.
  • Repeat the process.

Targeted Regions

The shoulder region is the main targeted region for resistance band kneeling shoulder press.

Targeted Muscles

Deltoid muscles are the main focused muscles of resistance and the kneeling shoulder press.

Reps and Sets

Perform 3 sets of this workout which in the set includes 15-20 reps.

II) Lunge With A Lateral Shoulder Raise

The lunge with a lateral shoulder raise engages the whole body muscles. This workout is very helpful to stimulate body muscles and dissolve extra fats. Elimination of extra fats improves stability and coordination.

This workout is effective for Jiu-Jitsu practitioners as they work hard to increase their body potential and endurance. Stability and body balance also helps them on the mat to stabilize their posture and defend against any submission.    

Starting Position

Get yourself into a lunge position and hold the resistance band with your front feet. Hold both handles of the resistance band in your hands. This is the starting position of the lunge with a lateral shoulder raise.

How to Do

  • Once you are in your starting position, turn your body in the forward lunge position.
  • Turning into a forward lunge, move your hands upward.
  • Move your hands until they come into a straight position with your shoulders.
  • Now again move into the starting position. This is one rep. Repeat the process.  

Targeted Regions

The targeted regions in the lunge with a lateral shoulder raise include the whole body muscles. The primary targeted areas are. 

  • Upper Back
  • Chest
  • Arms
  • Legs
  • Shoulders
  • Core

Targeted Muscles

The most affected muscles in the lunge with a lateral shoulder raise are

  • Glutes
  • Quads
  • Inner Thighs
  • Triceps
  • Deltoids

Reps and Sets

Perform 2-3 sets of this workout, which includes 10-12 reps.

III) Glute Kicks With A Resistance Band

Glute kicks with resistance bands are mainly focused on the glutes and hips. This workout improves core stability and ensures proper balance. Another important function of this workout is to shape and strengthen the glutes and legs

Starting Position

For this workout, you need a circular-resistance band. First of all, balance your body on your hands and knees. Loop the band around your knees. Tuck the resistance band beneath your knees. This is the starting position for this workout.    

How to Do

  • Move one of your knees upward until your upper leg becomes straight to the back of the body and your foot points towards the ceiling.
  • Again move your knee back to the ground but do not touch the ground.
  • Move your leg slowly, do not raise your hip too high, and keep your core static throughout the workout.
  • Perform 3 reps of 12 sets and 20 seconds rest.    

Targeted Regions

The focused regions of the glute kick with a resistance band are

  • Chest
  • Abdomen
  • Legs
  • Arms
  • Hips

Targeted Muscles

The targeted muscles of this workout are

  • Primary Targeted Muscles 
    • Glutes
    • Hamstrings
  • Secondary Targeted Muscles
    • Bicep
    • Tricep
    • Core
    • Abs

Reps and Sets

Perform 3-4 sets of this workout, which includes 12-15 reps.

IV) Squat With A Resistance Loop (Flat Band)

Starting Position

Start from a firm standing position. Step into your resistance loop and adjust your posture to slightly bent. Weight on the heels and here you go.

How to Do

  • You need a loop resistance band.
  • Step into the resistance loop.
  • Bring it up right above the knee height.
  • Set up from a squat position, chest up and proud, knees hip-width apart, and weight in the heels.
  • Drop down into a squat, push on your heels and food, and come all the way up.
  • Always remember to press your legs out to push through the resistance loop.
  • While performing the resistance loop, try to keep your knees behind your toes.

Targeted Regions

  • Legs
  • Hip
  • Back
  • Knees

Targeted Muscles

  • Glutes
  • Obliques

Reps and Sets

Perform 3-4 sets of 12 reps with 10-20 seconds rest. Try to hold into the squat position with a resistance loop as long as you can.

8.3. Resistance Band Workout for Grappling Practice

I) Resistance-Band Push-Up

Resistance band push-ups increase the effectiveness of push-ups as bands increase the resistance while moving the body up. This workout will help to make muscles strong and tone the body. For BJJ athletes who have to escape from the guard or submission technique of the opponent, this workout is good practice to resist pressure. 

Starting Position

Cross the loop-resistance band in such a way that it turns into a figure 8 shape. Now hold the edges of 8 in your hands and cross the band from your back. Take the position of push-ups while holding the band in your hand. Squeeze your glutes. This is your starting position.    

How to Do

  • Once you are in your starting position, move your body ups and down as you are doing push-ups.
  • While moving upwards, feel like you are pushing the floor away from you.
  • Move upward until your arms get straight.
  • Hold this position so that your muscles work against the resistance of the band.
  • Now again move your body towards the floor. Your front body should be parallel to the floor keeping your arms apart. This is one repeat.
  • Repeat the process.  

Targeted Regions

The targeted regions of the resistance band push-ups are:

  • Arms
  • Shoulders
  • Chest muscles

Targeted Muscles

The targeted muscles of resistance band push-ups are:

  • Triceps
  • Deltoids
  • Pectorals 

Reps and Sets

Perform 3-4 sets of this workout, which includes 12-15 reps.

II) The Fire Hydrant

Fire Hydrant resistance band workout is very effective to ensure lower body strength and conditioning. This exercise is specifically for glute muscles.    

Starting Position

You need to get your fours on the ground/mat.  Keep your natural posture while maintaining straight elbows and weight on the hands and knees.

How to Perform?

  • Place a resistance band around your lower leg right above your ankle.
  • Make sure the band is not loose,  a bit tight band is recommended.
  • Keep both legs at 90 degrees.
  • Lift one leg to the side while maintaining balance.
  • Keep your gaze on the ground maintaining a neutral neck and spine and do not try to look up.
  • The tricky part is not to let the moving leg touch the ground.
  • You can straighten your leg in alliance with your whole body and keep the posture and repeat the process with the other leg.

Targeted Regions

  • Upper leg
  • Hip

Targeted Muscles

  • Hamstring
  • Erectors
  • Calves
  • Glutes

Reps and Sets

Perform 3-4 sets of 12 reps and 20-30 seconds rest time. You can follow the other mentioned variations of the same exercise.

III) Planks Pull-Through Resistance Bands

This workout ensures consistent pressure on your muscles that enhance the muscle's potential and help to resist submission. This workout increases strength, and range of motion and activates your triceps.

How to Do

  • For performing a proper knee drive with a pull-through resistance band tie one end of the band.
  • Loop it around a strong area.
  • Stick your foot in the other end of the loop handle nice and tight.
  •  Keep your food flexed, and tilted otherwise the band handle can sling out.
  •  Start in the plank position and move away from the band to create an appropriate resistance in the band.
  • Hold the plank position nice and safe.
  • Now drive your knee in and out.
  •  Try to keep your hips square the entire time and with no rotation.
  • Switch to the other side. 

Targeted Area

  • Rectus Abdominis
  • Upper Leg

Targeted Muscles

  • Quadriceps
  • Tibialis Anterior
  • Tensor Fasciae
  • Deltoideus
  • Rhomboideus

Reps and Sets

Perform 3 sets of 10 reps with 20 seconds rest. Try to maintain balance and engage your core.

9. Takeaways

The resistance band provides a great workout plan for grapplers to strengthen their muscles. The resistance band provides multiple benefits as they condition the body and ensure a low risk of injury during training. Furthermore, they also help to tone the body and activate muscles for training.

These bands are very easy to use, inexpensive, and portable. Without wasting energy on expensive and heavy equipment for workouts, resistance bands provide multiple workouts that help you to attain your target. The resistance bands are not very popular and common but these ensure the best results.

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