I wanted to give a shout-out to the guys at Submission Master for a recent phone call / interview with them. It’s not easy making a useful MMA dummy but they work hard to do it. If you’re interested in using their grappling dummy please check out The Submission Master Dummy.
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Drillers make killers, and drilling in Jiu Jitsu is not usually an activity for the lonely. If you don’t have a training partner, finding opportunity to progress may prove difficult. There are solo drills that can help dexterity, flexibility, strength, explosiveness, and other attributes that may raise your physical potential, but without reps on a training partner, you may have trouble putting your abilities to use. Drilling with an MMA dummy provides your mind and body the environmental control they need to review, assess, and revamp your game, while factoring out many of the negative attributes associated with a live drilling partner. While drilling with a live partner undoubtedly has its advantages, let’s take a look at why you should schedule a date with your grappling dummy immediately.
Reps and Muscle Memory for What Matters
There is some debate by psychologists, both in sport and non-sport-related fields, over the number of reps it takes the human body to muscle-memorize a task to the point of mastery. Recommended kinesthetic memory rep ranges may vary from 3,000 to 25,000 depending on the difficulty of the task, and the source of the claim. Regardless of the source, it adds up fast. The bottom line here is that your live training partners may not be as willing to be on the receiving end of, say, 10,000 paper-cutter chokes, as you might think. Not to mention the, “You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours” etiquette that is deeply imbedded in social structure of drilling partnership. Every rep you give is a rep you get. That adds up to tender tracheas and waning motivation all around. Let’s face it: Sometimes Jiu Jitsu hurts, and your dummy doesn’t mind.
MMA Dummy Training – Imposing Your Will
One of the most common suggestions coaches give students seeking to improve their game, both in a competitive and non-competitive setting is to “impose your will”. Playing a reactive game can be fun, entertaining, and, at times, effective, but leaves you vulnerable to positional play that forces you into your areas of weakness. There is no doubting that everyone has their “go-to” positions and moves, and you will find yourself at a statistical disadvantage if you routinely find yourself trying to pit your “B” game against your opponent’s “A” game.
Grappling with a dummy can be a tremendous tool in breaking the ingrained habits of a reaction-based game. As simple as it may seem, routinely placing yourself in a situation that requires you to be unwaveringly proactive will help you systematically construct the mindset needed to act first. A dummy will not move without your input, thus forcing the action is your only option. You will be surprised to see how much carryover this has onto a fully resisting opponent. The fluency you will gain with the techniques you have drilled will reduce your hesitation and give you the edge you need to show your “A” game to the world. I’ve talked about this in other articles about key areas of my game, such as leg locks / leg lock drilling [on the BJJAddict blog].
Take it to the Mat
In the eyes of those who have experienced the benefits, the term “MMA dummy” tends to be a bit of a misnomer. In fact, grappling with a dummy can be one of the most intelligent decisions you will make towards the progress of your game. Don’t believe me?
Try it. You will.