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BJJ Noob - Gassing advice?

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    BJJ Noob - Gassing advice?






    #2
    per se, unless physical weakness is a big problem in your regular rolling.

    Personally, I maintain that I was born without a cardio, but even I notice that the more BJJ I do, the better I can keep up. In particular, once I started doing classes back to back (hence 2 hours instead of 1), I often felt like death after the second class but soon felt that doing just one was a cakewalk.

    Also, if you
    just started sparring this week
    [ petterhaggholm.net | blog | essays ]
    [ self defence: general thoughts | anecdote is anecdotes, not data

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      #3
      It sounds like you pretty much have the answers from yourself and your coaches. The increased cardio will come with mat time. From my experience, when people first start rolling "live", no matter how much they think they are focusing on relaxing and breathing, a person is still tensing when they don't need to be; using muscle energy and spending "gas" when it isn't necessary. Learning when to "rest" in the guard while still working to gain position will aid in not expending extraneous energy. Keep doing what you are doing, and it will begin to fall in place.

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        #4
        Remember it is always easier and takes less energy to move yourself than to move the other person.

        If you find yourself pushing/pulling/growling/huffing/puffing, then chances are you are trying to force the other person into a position instead of moving yourself into it. You will kill your cardio that way.

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          #5
          One thing that really helped me out when I was learning grappling was that I didn't realize how much I was holding my breath. I mean a split second here and there really adds up.

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            #6
            Try talking to yourself while rolling. It sounds stupid (it is kind of stupid really) but it actually does work. Not loud, but just keep a running commentary on what's going on "Ok, here we go...oh..pulling guard?...ok...I gotta posture up and....ok..nice sweep...I gotta get outta here.....ok....ok...that didn't work...ok..hey I'm out.." Your training partner will think you are retarded (maybe you are) but if you've been getting 5 miles a gallon you might feel like you're getting closer to 10 or 12.

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              #7
              You could try throwing some Crossfit training in there twice a week on your days off. I had the same problem as you a while back, I used to get gassed when switching between sparring, grappling and circuit training - a few weeks of Crossfit made a huge difference to my overall cardio and endurance. Worth checking out.

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                #8
                Thanks for the responses guys. Much appreciated.

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                  #9

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                    #10
                    To the OP:
                    A lot of what people think is 'cardio' in BJJ is actually technique, as you keep going to class you'll find your technique will improve, allowing you to use less energy and massively improve your apparent cardio. Hitting the pavement more probably won't make a lot of difference, the amount of energy you're using right now is likely too much by a multiple, not a fraction.

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                      #11
                      I would consider myself all round fit and strong, I've been lifting weights for almost 20 years and training crossfit and various MA for most of my life. I recently took up combined BJJ/Judo classes at a hardcore MMA club and I was shocked at how I went from being what I thought was very fit guy to bumbling noob gasping for breath in the corner.
                      Breathing has to be a big factor, it's very hard to breath regularly when you are trying to wrestle a 20 stone Eastern European guy off your chest while also trying not to get submitted. Breathing in weight training isn't normally a problem as the worst you will get from high endurance training is having to lift when you are breathing hard - this is very different to using explosive strength and continued push pull movements when you are fighting. Last night I had a blue belt kneel on my chest with his full weight as he pulled my head forward and eventually rolled to an arm bar - but for the entire time he was on top of me I couldn't breath and I couldn't tap because my arms were tied up.
                      Not sure if this is something that anyone can teach you but rather something you have to work out for your own body based on it's current level of fitness etc. Still trying to get my head around it but the guys in the club all say that it gets easier the more you train so that's what I'm going to do.

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                        #12
                        This is a great thread. Allegedly I am to receive my third strip in the next couple of weeks (all of my professors have been dropping subtle hints such as asking me if I'm up for the advanced sparing and techniques classes) and I am looking forward to rolling. Like you, I am also training at a Gracie Barra dojo.

                        There have been a few nuggets of gold on this thread. Regarding Vorpal and the talking to yourself, that’s funny because I do that all the time when learning and practicing new techniques. I often talk to myself out loud (quietly) and just about everybody I’ve trained with has come to expect that when working with me, lol. I just think it really helps me, it’s almost like I’m coaching myself through the moves.

                        Soldiemedic25, you are dead on regarding the small instances where I catch myself holding my breath before (wrongly) trying to muscle somebody because my technique is still immature.

                        Uncle Skippy, you dropped one of those “ahh-ha” moments on me when I read your post. I never even thought about this: “Remember it is always easier and takes less energy to move yourself than to move the other person.” Great comment and one that I will keep in mind.

                        I love training. I am currently getting into the dojo for an hour each day Monday through Thursday and then Saturday as well. I love it. I live for each “ahh-ha” moment in training.

                        Again, great post Finnegan I hope you continue this thread as your training progresses.

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                          #13
                          I would normally just say RELAX! and then /thread but I've had a pretty different experience than most people during grappling and I think a lot of it comes from a long background in swimming. The breathing discipline I developed in swimming has allowed me to pretty much always breath consistently no matter what activity I am doing.

                          I never really gassed the way a lot of white belts do and now that I can relax and roll I seem to be able to roll at a competitive level for an extremely long time even when compared with guys I know are at a similar skill level and in better shape. So if a pool is available and you know how to swim maybe jump on in there.

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                            #14
                            Originally posted by WhiteShark View Post
                            I would normally just say RELAX! and then /thread but I've had a pretty different experience than most people during grappling and I think a lot of it comes from a long background in swimming. The breathing discipline I developed in swimming has allowed me to pretty much always breath consistently no matter what activity I am doing.

                            I never really gassed the way a lot of white belts do and now that I can relax and roll I seem to be able to roll at a competitive level for an extremely long time even when compared with guys I know are at a similar skill level and in better shape. So if a pool is available and you know how to swim maybe jump on in there.
                            Haha, I swam at a competitive level as a kid which led to an easy transition into running and cycling as an adult. All of my life, in every sport I've so much as dabbled in I have had above average lung capacity which is part of the reason I made the OP to begin with.

                            For me it's definately not a lack of lung capacity which lead/leads to my initial and ongoing gassing. Remembering to breath? Lol, thats another story.

                            Uncle Skippy, you dropped one of those “ahh-ha” moments on me when I read your post. I never even thought about this: “Remember it is always easier and takes less energy to move yourself than to move the other person.” Great comment and one that I will keep in mind
                            Yeah this was a big lightbulb moment for me as well. Whenever I find myself using to much strength I try to think about this. Sometimes it even works!!!

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                              #15
                              Some of it is adrenaline management, which goes with the "relax" theme. My cardio is below average but I'm rarely out of breath in BJJ, unless someone's sitting on my diaphragm.

                              BJJ is just not really that cardio intensive. (Judo is another story, though). You can always tell the new guys -- going too hard, breath like a furnace, clinging on for dear life. Chill.

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