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Combining Yoga and Kettlebells for Conditioning
Anyone who trains BJJ knows that it is an amazing workout. The average class at every BJJ gym and academy typically begins with a short (or sometimes long) warm-up that could include light jogging around the edges of the mats, calisthenics, stretching, and BJJ-specific mobility exercises. By the time the first 15-20 minutes of class is over, your heart is pounding, your body is warm and you haven't even started training yet. Then while class is going on you are working with partners of all different sizes, pushing and pulling bodies, yours included. By minute 45, if you're not sweaty and breathing decently hard, you may not be working or drilling hard enough.
The last portion of class is typically reserved for some live training. Here is where the real nature of jiu jitsu as an exercise comes into play. Coach sets the timer for maybe 5 minutes and you think to yourself, "Five minutes, I can do anything for five minutes" and then you and your partner slap hands and fist bump and commence to trying to kill each other.
You go home after class having worked every muscle in your body (not to mention your mind). Your heart rate continues to stay high long after class as your body begins to recover. If someone asked you, what kind of exercise is BJJ? Is it cardio or is it strength training, or is it something different--how would you reply?
The answer is, it's probably both and more. For the average person, a BJJ class can be some of the hardest working out they've ever done. It mixes the best of a heart pumping cardio workout and a full blown strength and conditioning session.
Two of the most effective approaches that can supplement your jiu jitsu training are yoga and kettlebell conditioning workouts. How can you get the most bang out of your time investment and make sure you leave plenty of time for jiu jitsu training? Why not combine the two exercises into one workout?
To further explore the question of whether or not you should consider adding conditioning to your weekly BJJ training, check out this article from our BJJ Fanatics archive here.
In the video below, we see a 40 minute workout that mixes a wide variety of yoga poses with kettlebell exercises. The mix of the two perfectly blend stretching, strengthening exercises, and heart pumping cardio into one complete session that would perfectly compliment your training on the mats without taking too much of your time.
If you want to learn more about using Yoga as a supplement to your BJJ training, check out our article at BJJ Fanatics on Yoga for BJJ here.
Here is another example of the union of kettlebells and yoga into one perfectly blended workout.
A great resource to learn more about how kettlebells can impact your BJJ would be our article at BJJ Fanatics about implementing them into your training. Check it out here.
We all know jiu jitsu is a great workout that can improve your cardio and muscle strength. It can strengthen your core and help improve hip mobility. But if you're looking to supplement your training and improve your overall level of fitness, look no further than kettlebells and yoga. You are certainly welcome to keep the two separate, but know it's possible to kill two proverbial birds with one workout.
If you're ready to start building your strength and endurance with the versatile kettlebell, look no further than Phil Ross' 8 DVD Kettlebell Workout Library on sale today!