#27 Stronger Grips For BJJ
Always get your grips broken? Forearms always gassing out? Sounds like you need stronger Grips! Often when people first start training Jiu-jitsu the first thing they feel fail is their ability to hold on, Gi or No-Gi. This can happen as a result of a few different factors.
JT & Joey discuss where most BJJ folk are going wrong and what they can then do to develop the killer crush grip.
How Rock Climbing training relates to training BJJ
The Simplest way to improve your grip
Rope climbing and Grip Power
Maximal Grip strength & Captains Of Crush
Speaker 1: 0:04
Very careful a good martial artist does not become tense, but ready, essentially at this point, the fight is over. So we pretty much flow with the goal who was worthy to be trusted with the secret to limit the spot.
Speaker 2: 0:29
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to another Bulletproof of BJJ podcast. I am JT I’m Joey guys. Welcome today. We’re talking about how to get stronger grips for BJJ. Now this is a common question. People are commonly say, oh, I’m rolling. And people always break my cribs. Sorry, constantly hanging on to geeky or I’m rolling my grips gas out. And , uh , there’s a few pieces to the puzzle as to how you can actually get greater grip strength. And we’re going to break it down for you. First cab off the rank. I’m going to say this is people tend to overgrip when they first start BJJ, like one of the problems you may have even found it yourself, your first tournament, your first roll adrenaline hits and grips pump out. And it’s just like, ah, it’s so much stress and, and , and just gripping way harder than you need to. And that over time, as you get better at jujitsu , you develop a degree of efficiency, you know, where you need to just kind of keep your hand like cupped in the shoulder or, you know, okay , now I’ve got go. I got a grip like hell and getting better at your kind of grip selection, like grip management, grip management in a way. Yeah. Comes as you start getting better at rolling. So oftentimes when people are struggling with their grip, when they first start BJJ, when their white belt, and even when they’re a blue belt, they’re just coming with that furious death grip. And it actually doesn’t add to their digital at all. I just saw , I would introduce that first to say, Hey, what might be bringing you on done before we start talking about getting stronger is let’s be a bit more efficient. Let’s like, let’s, let’s address that because your coach might even be saying to you, Hey, you need to just dial it down a little bit. You’re going a bit over the top with the grip and that can be effecting grip strength . What do you think about the very grip heavy guards ? So if you’re , if you’re trying to learn spider guard , yes. Something like that, or, you know , um, uh, what’s that one two feet on the color, you know, call asleep, call a sleeve . Like it’s like that, all that stuff there I find sometimes. And maybe it’s just on a certain day where I’m a bit fatigued or the grips are a bit cooked, but some days I give them a try and then I’m like, nah, that. Yeah. I think we could compare it to some people with some of the strongest grips on the planet are rock climbers and in rock climbing, when they’re breaking down certain holds and stuff, they talk about different levels of crimp. Like a full crimp is where you can pretty much close your hand, almost around a grip. And then like a half cream quarter crimp one eight cramp. You see them just like , you know, using their pinky fingers, just nothing. And really spider God is like , uh , like that grip where you kind of go on the fingers over into the cuff , um, or even the cuff of the pants, almost like a quarter crimp. That’s not where you should start. You know, like if you, if you thought of somebody as a beginner, it’s advanced, it is advanced. And even though it’s cool, it’s , it’s, it’s cool game. If you haven’t mastered just being able to like hold onto a lapel or if you haven’t kind of gotten on top of being able to have fully close your hand and , and manipulate that, allowing it to go to the extremities of your fingers. It’s a nightmare. Like you’re asking for injury because connective tissues, like, you know, your hand and your fingers, it’s , it’s mainly connective tissue really. Um, they take ages to get stronger. What I’d say to that is that, I mean, obviously if you’ve done jujitsu for a while , you’d love spider God , that’s cool. But we all know those photos of those people with the completely jacked fingers from playing a lot of spider guard , it’s very taxing on the joints. You’re going to end up in arthritic mess. So how do we actually improve our grips? One of the first things I would say relevant to that guys is a lot of people when they’re lifting use straps, you know, you see that a lot. Cause it’s like, I’m really getting into my lifting. I went to the sports store and bought straps , straps. Maybe even some gloves are at the amount of guys. I hate to say it guys, but it started a year. I joined a 24 7 gym because I had a bench he’s even got the little , um, the little key code, like barcode plastic thing on his keys . It’s a little bit embarrassing posture . You do man. As my case, check me out. If I lose it, it cost me $200. I don’t know why. Um, but you see people at 24, 7 gyms with risk raps belts, weightlifting shoes. Hi . Yeah . And they’re doing bicep curls, like in the squat rack, they’re doing nothing that is going to get them stronger and nothing that requires them to have these accessories, but people have them. And , uh, the thing that I got actually from my coach, when I was trying to get better, he would make me, he wouldn’t let me deadlift any heavier than I could hold double overhand. Oh , so mixing, grips, no mixed grip, tore grip. If you guys are familiar, you , you have one pronated hand Palm facing you. And then one super needed hand facing out talk grip or mixed grip. This is actually stronger. You know, it’s 20, 20%, maybe more stronger if you’re dead listed enables you to pick up heavier weight. But when he was helping me get stronger with my grip, he was like, no , you have to get better at double overhand, which is actually much harder. And if you want to take that a step further and make your grip weaker, double supinated grip is so hello, bicep, tendon. Oh my God . It’s so rough. And um, the thing that really gets you connective tissue, strongest time under tension. So after doing a very grip , uh , centric session, I would have to finish with a five minute farmers walk, carry and whatever weight I picked up two kettlebells or handles. I couldn’t put it down for five minutes and that was wow. Right ? I mean, you get it to the point where you, where you had to put it down sometimes. Um , well, no, I , I wasn’t allowed to use a weight that I couldn’t keep right. For more or less than five minutes. Yeah . But yeah, I got in a short matter of time , um, I found my, my grips got a lot stronger from that time under tension because that’s what builds up the strengths in your connective tissues. And I think a lot of people out there, they love jujitsu and they’re like, oh , I’m getting into all the new game and doing different stuff. I want to play open guard. I want to play spider guard, but they haven’t done the requisite work to build the grip to spend time because basically guys it’s uncomfortable. Forearms get like sore, your hands get uncomfortable. But that time on detention thing, whether you’re doing it because you can do it through a farmer’s walk Kerry . But one way that we do it through the program is through hanging. And I know that you’re, you’re quite the fan of , uh , hanging yourself, Joe. Yeah. I really like hanging, I guess it’s got a couple of the other added benefit of decompressing the spine and not putting the shoulders and stretching the arms and the torso out. But yeah, hanging is a real easy one. Isn’t it? And it’s interesting. It seems like quite an innocuous exercise. I think it’s in phase one of our foundation strength program and it’s like, you know , do three sets of hanging for, for one minute and you know, do some , um , an exercise and people constantly texting me going, man. Like I thought I was pretty strong, but that hanging kicks, my does like one guy. I was like, bro, I’m like pretty good at jujitsu, but I can’t hang for more than 10 seconds. And there’s a lot of things that could be the grip. It could be the shoulder mobility, you know , it could be like Peck mobility. Like there’s just so much in it. So , uh, yeah. I really like, it’s very simple. Yeah. And various stages of hanging, right ? Like chess . The bar is a totally different kettle of fish to like a , an active hang. But having your arms extended, like arms in a flex position and keeping that is so much more intense for the whole arm and the core as much as, as you grip the towel, hang that’s killer. Yeah. I definitely , uh , cause I used to do a bit of geek grip. Pull-ups you know, we see it all the time. Guys throw a gear over the pull-up bar and yeah, it’s harder, but guys, very simple. And if you have no idea about , um, the towel grip , you basically take two kind of bathroom, tit like smallest house , um, you know, and you loop them over the bar. So you have one towel in each hand folded in half and you hold onto those bad boys. I mean hanging stuff, but you try and do pull-ups with that even though I’m I have some experience with it, I’ve done it a fair bit. My forums are always cooked after that. It’s it’s a different kind of intensity. You’re also slipping a little bit. So you’ve got a grip that little bit of constantly losing the grip and that’s very similar to jujitsu . This is where I’m going to flip modes because I had actually had somebody messaged me the other day and they had one of the kinds of plastic gripper, you know, like kind of coil spring, just you can pump it like a million times. All right. You know, like an old school grip developer, captains of crushed , but not kind of weak game. Yeah. The cheap everyone can play captains of crap, but it’s funny cause he’s like, oh, what do you reckon ? Brahms? I’m just doing these in the car. And I was like, give them to your daughter. Like, don’t compare that. Cause like the thing is guys like I’ve I think the best I never fully closed it too . So they have these different grades, the captains of crush or these kinds of world-class super hard grippers that the old school like, you know, to handle two metal handles that are joined by the spring in the middle. And they’re very tough , tough, so tough. And you know, world-class, I think there’s only been three people in the history of the world to close a four or come close, even super strong guys can’t do it and its maximum strength . And this is where it gets a little bit different guys because a lot of you out there probably training , uh , your strength insurance, which is good, you know, you’re just trying to grip for longer, whether you’re hanging or you’re doing the farmer’s walk carriers like I was talking about, but it’s very rare that we train our maximum grip, like our ability to close our grip and hold it as hard as we can for a short period of time. This is something that does need to get developed and it can be developed through a bottoms up press, which is actually one of our standards in the new standards program. Because if you don’t keep that grip crushed as high as possible, the Calabasas is going to fall sideways and it’s going to bang your wrist or bang your face depending, you know, a heavier deadlift. So working as hard as you can with your grip to just keep that thing in your hands for one, two or three reps. And then, you know, there’s a few different ways that you can train your grip maximally. And most people I know in jujitsu don’t actually do any work on their grips other than train jujitsu . Can you break down what those sort of main categories are of grip strength? Yeah, I think the simplest way that we can put it guys, if we looked at it, as we said, like maximum , like your big strong one RM type heavy deadlift type movement where you just hold as hard as you can for a short period of time, captains of crush, as hard as you can squeeze talking like four to 10 seconds kind of thing maximum. Yep . Then the in-between , which is not hypertrophy, but you’re , we’re looking at it more like say grip power, you might say, so this is repeated gripping. So climbing is an example. Rock climbing is a really good example of that. Yep . Joe is a fan of the rope climb and as much as I hate to admit it, possibly better than me at rope climbing, but it’s also because he’s skinny. Sorry, man. I zoned out for a second . What did you just say? I said nothing. Uh, and for those of you out there, you might have a rope at your gym or you might’ve seen wrestlers do it all the time. A rope climb is a perfect example of gripping power grip release grip release, incorporated, usually into pulling. So some people they might be pulling a sled on a rope or they might be climbing a rope or a juggling kettlebell juggling. Not that we do that, but it’s kind of up there. Isn’t no, I, I mess with it sometimes like for a bit of fun, but yeah, your grip release grip release and then the third category will be a grip like strength endurance . And that is doing your , your minute to minute hangs farmers’ walk carries , like keeping your grip closed as long as you can, until you kind of can’t that’s like the cardio equivalent of grip training. Yes. That I think that is very good analogy. And so for folks listening, if they’re looking at those three sort of different styles is one of them more important for jiu-jitsu than the other? Um, better . I think it’s , uh, looking at , uh, deficiencies in a , in a person’s game. It’s like if somebody just their grips blow out super quickly, they have no grip insurance at all. Then that’s actually probably a good place for them to start. It’s like a low barrier to entry. So you’re saying you want all three, you do. You definitely do. And if you train enough jujitsu, you’re going to have a good amount of , uh , strength insurance. You know, if you’re sorry, geeky , no gate . I mean, definitely the gate is very much more grip heavy, but essentially if you’re rolling, you know, three to five times a week, you’re covered for grip insurance. Yeah . So then you have to have a look at gripping power and that’s probably more where training judo like repeated grips people, breaking your grips, take another group like that. That’s where it’s more standup and gripping, forcefully repeatedly is more in the mix. So if you’re someone who trains jujitsu regularly doing rope climbs and doing things that require you to grip forcefully, you know, anywhere from eight to 10 times in a row, that’s ideal. And if you’re trying to really get like an elite level of , of grip strength , then you can go to the maximum. But if you’re somebody who doesn’t even go to the gym, you know, you don’t even lift plates . You don’t even look at weights. You just love jujitsu because it’s so fun. A good place to start is the strength endurance and the grip. But for you, Joe , you’ve done a bit of rope climbing in your time when our good friend Paval was here, Pavel’s a wrestler as human, just a base base of a human or specimen. That kid man, lovely, lovely guy as well. You guys are doing rope climbs, semi reg . I think you guys are even doing timed rope climbs at some point. Yeah. It was a bit of a Friday afternoon thing. Did a fun . We used to do it in the gym way back. We had like a Friday afternoon rock climb club. Oh cool. And it was just like, whoever shows up four o’clock for climbing the road . Nice. Yeah. I’ve always liked it for the upper body strength and it’s kind of one of those things it’s really hard when you don’t do it regularly or yeah , isn’t it. But when you, when you do it regularly, it’s like, it’s still hard, but it always feels really good. Yes . It’s such an excellent movement grips for me and not something that I’ve ever felt particularly strong at. Um, you know, just in terms of when I’m like, say single-arm hanging and stuff like that. And when I used to work on the one-arm chin up, I always found that the grip would fatigue quickly. And then I’ve trained with others who that’s just not a factor for them. Sure. I really liked the rope climb for that. I suppose for me, that sort of thing is probably as close as I get to doing specific grip work. Maybe it’s a bit of laziness or a bit of like , uh , you know, whatever. I probably should finish this workout with some grip specific training. I’ll pick it up tomorrow classic. But I , but I think it’s also, we’ve talked about this before in terms of, you know , uh , we actually talked about last week , uh, balancing out the grip because we spend so much time gripping in jujitsu that it’s very common for us to, to stay without curl now, old Talon hands that we don’t spend time opening up me personally. And you correct me if I’m wrong here, Joe , when you’re doing any kind of hand bouncing or putting your hands on the floor, you’ve got to stretch your hands. You’ve got to stretch your forearms because essentially if you’re doing handstands or hand balancing your hands or your feet, right. So being able to open up your hands is super important. Yeah . Yeah. It’s kind of built into the position. Right. So I think because you’re pretty, well-rounded in that way that you , you’re not just doing jujitsu , you’re doing these other things. You’ve probably put greater importance on being able to do that. And that’s probably made your elbows and wrists healthier as a result. Yeah. Yeah. It’s a good point, I suppose. Yeah, but I mean, I’m , I don’t care about that stance. I’m just going to do rock climbing, captains of crush grip, pick up stones. Give me the gnarled hands because when I grabbed your collar , boy, I’m a , your neck . Talk to me about that idea. A lot of, you know , rock climbing. It’s real cool these days. Um, it’s even in the cooler now, since it’s been in the Olympics, man, tell you what the hipsters of the park are going to be on mental dude, but for jujitsu people who rock climb and we know on our bunch who do it, so to you and it’s, and I always think, ah, if I’m looking for an activity to do outside of jujitsu, it is not rock climbing, right. Because it’s kind of the same on the grips, like in a season it’s similar. Is there benefit there? Or do you think that that’s potentially just overcooking this whole structure? I think yes. To both questions there is benefit there, but also it is over cooking . So I’m treading a fine line. I think this is where we could say a difference between myself and someone else’s every morning, I’m going to stretch my forearms. You know, every day I’m going to take care of business, to deal with all the stuff I hit my body with business. But you , you out there, you might be like, ah , Sunday, Hey, I heard everybody’s going down to the, you know , bouldering gym sounds cool. After the open mat, just to get more of that in you. I think what we’re looking at is if somebody is only training to do two, twice a week, three times a week at most doing a bit of boulderings, it’s not the worst thing in the world because it requires lower body mobility. Uh , it reminds you that you probably need to lose five kilos. Cause your is too big. It’s pulling you off the wall. That’s how I feel every time. Um , uh , all these skinny hips , the kids killing me, but it’s fun. It’s problem solving . So I feel like even though they seem very different in terms of pursuit, there are crossover elements in terms of lower body flexibility, upper body grip. So someone said, what is some good training I could do Fujitsu other than jujitsu? I would say, Hey, I could , you know, doing a session of bouldering once a week. Isn’t the worst. But if you are not prepping your forearms, prepping your wrists , stretching your upper body over a period of time, you probably are going to get more jacked up. If we put this on balance, doing grip training, Fujitsu will help you. And there’s nothing like when you roll with somebody, who’s got an unbreakable grip, your psych I’m , I’m gone. I can’t, what can I do here ? I can’t, this it’s awful. It’s the worst feeling. And that could be you. You could be that guy, but we are , this is where I think you might be leading. And I’m not sure is too much of a good thing, you know, to overdose. And I think the difference for me is I’ve been lifting weights kind of four or five times a week for a long time. And if I don’t do something that requires me to squeeze the life out of it, I’m don’t feel as calm. I need to be able to cut something with my hands. If we’re taking a more balanced perspective. And if you’re already training to do to , you know, four or five times a week, you’re probably killing your grips anyway. So, but if you’re somebody who’s not training digital quite as much, and you’re thinking my grips suck, what can I do? I think there’s some very simple things that you can do that are going to improve your grip. And I think the first, first thing that you can do, if you’re struggling with your grip hanging of any description and doing some caring, farmer’s walk, carry , whether it’s asymmetrical or two kettlebells in or one kettlebell in each hand for a time under tension. Now not everybody’s got a rope, but uh, I mean, you’ve, you’ve done a bit of work with rings, Jo and rings is a pretty grip heavy piece of equipment, right? Yeah. Yeah. I guess they, I say when I do like a bit of a ring routine where it’s very long sad . Hmm . I suppose the only difference there is that, because you’re moving from being under the rings to being on top, you go from a grip position to a support position, right. You go from like, yeah. From like pulling , pushing , right . And when you, and that, and that’s giving you a break. Oh, okay. I’ve been watching the Olympics, you’re watching these cats do that. And you’re like, holy. But there’s these Mo like, you know, this is not to detract from the iron cross. They’re being lazy up there . Jesus . But you know, but they’re , but they’re moving through these different positions. And so that’s taking pressure off any one. Right. Actually just on that. What , what really impressed me as an event was the pommel horse. Okay. Because there’s no rest from this constant pushing. Yeah. They’re constantly pushing down. Yeah . Maybe they’re pushing behind or they’re pushing in front try . So they’re pushing the whole time, the whole time. You know what I mean? Whereas you look at the rings, it’s like they have pulling now they pushing now they’re pulling in this way. Now they’re pushing here and now they’re in a handstand. Like it’s constantly changing the vector on the shoulder. I was like, that pommel horse would suck. You know what , it’s just one minute and your hips are just swinging the whole time. Right . I always thought of the rings as being hotter. I mean, look from a , I think from an , from a strength perspective and in terms of the range of positions and strength required. Yeah. The rings is unmatched. It’s how does it gets? Yeah. They’re all uniquely different and difficult in their own way out there. Yeah, definitely. There’s plenty of people out there who could probably only do one pull up once, you know , you know, and they’re like far out , I’m not really getting enough work here to get any kind of strength benefit. The way that I often get people building up to that is look at a , you know, a 45 degree ring row or like various stage ring row, horizontal ring row , get people’s horizontal pulling better. And you know, the longer they’re there that they are working that grip. Yep . How about yourself, man ? Yeah, look, we got the same idea on that. Um, I think another good option is to use a Centrix . Yes. Right. So jumping up to the top of the , the chin up and then like, sorry with control. And maybe you could do a couple of reps for , for the people who can only do like a handful of repetitions, whether it’s full pull-ups or a couple of a centrics , but if you can only get a couple, a really good way to approach it is to move away from like the four to five sets approach, which is what we can use with the majority of our strength training. Sure. But for something like that, I like to look at it from total reps per workout. Yes. So for someone doing chin-ups and let’s say for , for a female who’s like maybe just cracked through, got their first chin-up . Yep . But the idea of doing like five sets of five, they’re not there yet. No. So for that person, I would say, look, get me a single rep by get me 10 reps, this workout. And it doesn’t matter what you do in between. You can rest for as long as you need to. Yeah . You can subset it with your other exercises, whatever, and they get 10 reps. And then , then, you know, next week let’s try and get 12 and you just try and build that volume slowly. Yes . Until you get to a point where you can get about 20 reps. Yeah. Then you’re talking, all right, let’s do a set of two. And now we can go to five sets of two , five sets of three. Then it falls back into that sort of conventional strength realm. It’s a chunkable attainable thing. And the whole time their grip is getting stronger. Yeah , exactly. And this is, you know , to J taste point about time on detention . It’s like getting the total amount of work done per session. If you are getting that exposure to grip work, your grip is going to be getting stronger. Yeah, definitely. I mean, obviously, you know, we have the program and stuff, but how do you like to incorporate the grip work into a workout? Do you start your workout with group training or is it something that you spread throughout? Is it tacked on at the end? I would just , and we say fresher is better. So the first thing that will go on you from a fatigue perspective is grip smaller muscles to fatigue, no tension. So , uh , I actually learned this from my friend, James Ross, shout out , uh , James Ross of the Richmond gym , much love. He’s saying that when they’re testing athletes for the NFL, they have to do a grip strength test and they have to do a vertical jump before they work out . And essentially it’s neurological testing. So before they do their weight training, they have to do their vertical jump and their maximum grip strengths . If either of those doesn’t match up, like if it’s not equal to like their baseline better, they’re not allowed to do that workout. They actually have to do a B workout. And , uh, obviously those guys are competitive. They do what they can. And , uh, but it is feedback if I have a , um, someone coming in for a Bulletproof session and I kind of notice in their warmup , their grip is a bit sucky. Like I get them to do some active hangs or scap pools and they’re kind of falling off a bit soon and I’m thinking, oh, the grips not right. And then I say, oh, let’s do some hops or some jumps. And the power’s not there. Then I know they’re not ready. They’re not recovered in terms of looking at a session, even for myself, if I’m like, right, today’s a big day and I want to do bottoms up press. I’m going to put it first. Even if I’ve got to do dead lifts , I find that how much the bottoms up press smokes your grip from just squeezing as hard as you can. I need to do that when I have my most energy trying to do that at the end, I’m not going to get a good result. I’m not going to get good quality movement. And I’m actually not going to get better at making all those muscles work together. Right. So I would prioritize that kind of maximum gripping, whether it’s , um, you know, your captains of crush or bottoms up press or a heavy deadlift, obviously you build up to it. But the thing that goes first is, is the thing that’s connecting you to the load, which is your hands and your forearms. So prioritize that if you’re trying to improve it priority , that’s it makes sense. I think , um, something, something handy, you know, on the hanging piece. And I’ve been thinking about this, cause we’re at training at the outdoor gyms at the moment. And so the tricky part, and I’m sure a lot of people can identify with this. When you go to the outdoor gym, you jump up, you grab the bike and it’s like, each outdoor gym is unique. They’ve got different. Thanks bars. Some of them are like polished steel and really slippery. Some of them are like painted and the paint’s chipping off and they’re just different. But what’s consistent is that there’s always been a bunch of greasy hand and slipping around on it . It’s almost like everyone’s eating kebabs and then jumping straight up on the bar because the bar is a slippery. Right? They are . And often you can get there and you can be like, you know, you’re going to do your set of whatever and you jump up and you’re like, oh my God, I can only hold this for like half of what I would normally write . And it’s easy to whinge about that and be like, oh , I just can’t use it or whatever, but it’s actually an opportunity to be like, well, it’s a hotter grip gain today, make it work. That’s it. Um, and I think that that’s a really important thing for rounding your development. The other part of it that people often get caught up on is the pain on the skin. Yeah. It’s not, it’s not nice. Yeah. And this is, this happens more so definitely when you’re hanging less. So when you’re like carrying things by the side-by-side yeah. But when you’re hanging, you often feel like the skin on your hands is going to repeat , especially if you’re losing, like you start with the full group , but as you fatigue it it’s slipping and it’s gathering your skin up. You’re like, oh my goodness. Yeah, it’s gross. Yeah. And I mean, what I tell folks, when they go up to hang on the bar for this, you know, I’m introducing them to this exercise and they got that hurts. My hands is , yeah . The skin on your hands is weak. Like that’s what it’s telling you. It’s like, man, you just got weak skin and that’s fine because it’s going to get stronger. It will through this. Um, but it’s something we got to acknowledge. Yeah. What I try and advise people to do there is change up. What part of your hand you’re placing on the bar? Yep . So you’re getting a bit of variation and try to grip bars and objects of different size and texture. I agree. Tree branches, skinny bars, like a hook grit . Use the thumb. Exactly. Just changing . Just that small change guys. If you’re holding the bar gripping with your thumb, it’s actually technically harder, but more beneficial than if you just take a hook grip and don’t use your son. This is actually more efficient for your tendons and ligaments. I got a funny story relative to that, the slippery greasiness. So when we first started training kettlebells with my coach, if him , he told us about the high , like when they were training in the military, they would get a pig’s blood and they would splatter it all over their guns and their hands for bayonet training and all the stuff that it was like sticky and then kind of slippery as well. And they were struggling and then they would even throw water on it when it’s freezing cold. So they had to deal with a half frozen gun and all this , crazy stuff. You know, this is the eighties in Russia. And so he said that some of the top kettlebell lifters, cause we used to chalk, we used to put so much chalk on our hands so that we wouldn’t tear our hands off and callous and whatever. And he’s like , uh , like, yeah, use choke . He’s like, yeah. In Russia we put Meads . It’s like put bloods mostly. It’s hard for him . That’s, man. Put blood on their hands before they did the , they get minced . They’d put like meat mints . Oh. And then do kettlebell snatches. And my friend, James Ross actually uses a glove like a slippery material gloves , not to protect his hands, to make it harder to hold onto really. So he actually asked the grip harder. One time I was trying to be, I was trying to be cocky because I was dying. We’re doing a snatch louder and we get real kind of, you start at like 12 kilos and work your way up. Certain reps, certain whatever. I’m up to 32. And I said to him, I said, Hey, give me some mints . I started like trying to flex. And he was like, well, GME, what ? Your you’re what’s wrong with your breath? You need some mince . And I was like, no, you miss a point of finish . Ah , it. Don’t worry about it. He didn’t understand at all. I totally the reference look, I think gripping is hard enough as it is. And like you’re saying, Joe, you’re out in the park. If you don’t pull ups and stuff, it can be really challenging. And the thing I always lament is that my hands aren’t tougher. Like whenever I climbed the rope, I’m always like, ah, my hands. Like I feel like my muscles could be strong enough, but my hands really ache. Like, oh, if only I had like steel hands, no, I just wish I wish. And it only comes over time guys. Like you can’t, you can’t speed that process up. If you try and go too hard too soon, you will to tear your hands and then there’s no gripping for anybody. And that actually happened to a very famous digital , I know who started doing CrossFit, doing keeping chin-ups and completely tore his Palm. Oh , couldn’t choose the guy. Can’t say famous Hawaiian sky . Oh yeah. Okay. Yeah, because it was like all cross you’re tired . It’s good. And yeah, there’s value to CrossFit, but he was sweating and he was competitive and he’s like, I don’t want to lose this. And I mean, he was trying to get better for jujitsu . He couldn’t train for three weeks. Almost completely tore his whole Palm hell rough. I’ve gone through that CrossFit stage of tearing hands and it’s just, yeah, it’s not worth it. It’s not as beneficial as it would seem. Right. Like in the moment. Yeah. It’s like, oh this is cool. But then it’s like, well actually you just your training for the next like half a month. So how, how helpful was it? That’s right. Yeah. But uh, all right guys. Well, I think we’ll leave it there. We can get into more detail. And if you have more questions, we will answer them. Which leads me into question time. We’ve got two voicemails that have come through the website today. Thank you. First one, here is from Ryan. I’m going to play this right now.
Speaker 3: 31:19
Hey guys. Just wondering what your favorite neck warmup is for jujitsu , uh, or is the classic nodding side to side left and right. Neck warm up the way to go.
Speaker 2: 31:33
All right . So , uh, just to, just to be clear for anyone, who’s not sure that classic neck Walnut that Ryan’s talking about is when you’re lying on your back, happens in the warmups and it’s like Tinder , chest 20 reps of their bass , then Chin’s shoulder and then is the shoulder. Yeah. And like it’s, it’s hard. Yeah . And it’s , it’s a great little kind of triple set. Yeah . Your thoughts JT. I feel that , that , yeah, there is validity in that, right? Yes. The yes. And nos is a good way to build up sort of like , it’s kind of like doing a pushup for strength. It’s like, yeah. It’s one part of it. It’s one part. But really, I guess the thing I’ve learned over time is what the best way to strengthen your neck is to teach the muscles of your, like of your upper back and the front of your chest to keep your neck in one spot. So it’s not about necessarily generating movement. It’s about teaching those muscles to brace, to keep it in a good position, whether that’s against like a degree of , uh , band resistance. Like we, we actually have a good YouTube video showing how we can strengthen the neck, but doing the best analogy I can draw is like an isometric where you are actually creating tension and holding that for a period of time and bracing muscles. So not necessarily a bridge, not like a wrestler’s bridge per se, but one of the exercises that I do with my guys as a warmup before we wrestle is getting one partner to put a bit of tension like a , in a collar tie and the person just has to push back against it for three or four seconds. And then they’ve got to step out and just engaging their upper back, their neck, all through their traps to just brace and keep their neck in a good, strong position, good posture, and then ducking out and just getting little intimate bursts of isometric tension to keep the neck in good alignment. I think this is possibly where people go wrong because they’re like, oh, I can load up my neck in a flex position and then just extend my way out of it. And that’s where you can, you know, bulge disks and do things like that. So me personally, when I’m warming up my neck, as much as I do a bit of movement work or do a little bit of isometric contraction work, just to make sure everything’s fired up to keep my neck in a safe spot and you can do that real easy. You showed me with a band, right? You can get a small band, you can attach it to something that’s head hot. Yep . Put it around the head and then just walk away from it either sort of on the front. So it’s pulling your head back or you can change your positions and just holding that position against resistance for like 20, 30 seconds. Right. That’s kind of walked back against it, but you don’t move your head. You’re not like doing it. You’re just saying straight, just staying straight bracing. And then moving way to add resistance. You don’t have to pay $850 for an iron neck just saying , uh , be sick to have one, but yeah . Was a little bit too expensive. I mean, I was going to get one. I was like super keyed up. Um, my partner was going to get me one, you know, we’re in the U S it’s 2019. She’s like , oh , I’ll get you an iron neck. Even if you’re in the U S and you’re not having to pay to ship it to Australia, it’s still gonna cost you like almost a Crant . Right. And there’s much simpler ways to get your next stronger. So we’ll hit that low hanging fruit. And look, I suppose the only downside to ’em like this chin to chest lifts, which are, which are really handy, but the downside to them is in jujitsu . You’re already doing a lot of strength work where you’re tucking your chin in , like when you’re defending chokes and that kind of thing. So you build a lot of tension through the muscles at the front of the neck . I’m sitting up in God. Like I actually find if I’m in God for too long and China. Oh yeah, it’s right. Like head forward , scalings and SCM getting Jack that I didn’t really cause a lot of problems for your posture, for your jaw health fear , neck and spend . So you don’t necessarily want to go and just make those even stronger. And they already are getting quite a bit of work in a jiu-jitsu session. So attacking some of these other positions, like JT mentioned is really important for that. A great, I also posted a video on the Instagram a couple of weeks ago, which was like some handy Nick mobility drills. Right . That video is fantastic. It’s it’s , it’s , it’s almost three-dimensional, it’s like I’m coming out of your phone screen into your television room and you laugh now, but I like try it guys. I bet you can’t even do it. Like you look so stupid. It, it
Speaker 4: 35:37
Looks remarkable , uh, film yourself and tag us because it’s, but what you will find is you probably can’t do it. You’re like, honestly, like Joe has a strong neck, he has a mobile neck. I am going to, I dare you guys try our neck mobility routine because I was at home doing it. And I’m like, oh, I’m not bad. I wasn’t quite as good as Joe , but then I got my partner to try it and she couldn’t do it. She’s just like, I should do some weird dance having a fit. So , uh, try it out guys. Uh, next question. Anonymous. No name . Oh , okay. Hi JT. Hi Joey. My question is how do you deal with an arm bar injury and how do you best strengthen your elbows to handle those by injuries? I just find my elbows have not been the same since getting on board a while back. And , um , yeah , just wondering what we can do for that. Thanks guys.
Speaker 2: 36:34
Great question. Such a good question. Two parts to that. Yes. If it’s like, if you got armed bide last night and it got hyper hyper extended it and you’re in pain, you go see your physio, you find out what’s going on, you know, might just be a bit of a strain to the connective tissue. Oh, you know, you might need a MRI, whatever, but do that bit first, right? Yes. But let’s say your, let’s say kind of past that stage. And I think it’s more towards the second part of , um , the , the woman’s question, which was like, my elbows are just generally like a little bit kind of a bit Dicky at that end range. And what’s your approach there? Uh , I’ve seen this a bit and I’ve had a similar thing myself. Uh, I was, it was actually as a white belt on, is fighting against non-buyer and I thought, oh, I’m fine here in no-gi . And then my hand just like, oh, my hand slipped. So I went from safe to snapping , uh , you know, not completely tearing, but a partial tear, the kind of medial ligament in my elbow. And look, there’s there’s two things are gonna happen when this occurs. Forearm is going to tighten up massively because it doesn’t want you to go to that end range and in the same way or your tricep as well, it sounds strange, but your tricep will tighten so that it can’t fully extend. So, I mean, yeah, if you cradling a sore arm, it’ll get jacked up in this position and we want to get back to a healthy range. But , uh, there was another guy , um, Alex Monsanto , who’s a very kind of very high level Alliance guy. He couldn’t straighten his arms. And I was like, what’s going home with this guy , guys , really strong guy, very high level black belt. And he couldn’t straighten his arms, but he’d never really stretched or treated his triceps. He tried to stretch his biceps and worked on his forearms a bit. But what can happen is like tissues will just tighten up to protect the joint. And then you’ve actually got to kind of let them know it’s okay. Like it’s time to let go now. So whether you’re getting some soft tissue treatment from a therapist or you’re getting in there with a lacrosse ball, or , um, you know, you even might just be putting a bit of heat ointment, like a , a tiger balm or whatever , um , deep heat to try and warm the area up and then just very slowly taking it into extension and just kind of reeducating the joint to go it’s okay here, once you’ve restored that range of motion, then getting stability there, that’s the next piece of the puzzle. So most people never take care of that first step, which is getting the healthy range. And then it’s getting the joint stronger. They’re correctly strengthening the triceps to balance out the biceps cause we’re always pulling. So doing the straightening work and then actually just getting a bit of treatment on the, on the flexor muscles, on the inside of the elbow, flexing muscles, tricep, you tick those boxes, your elbows are gonna feel way better. Yeah, it’s that’s I couldn’t really add too much to that beyond use simple strength training exercises. Once you’ve restored that range use bicep curls, use tricep extensions, like use that standard isolation type stuff for the arm. Use it before you train and after, because it’s going to help to warm you up and it’s going to bring blood to the area, but it’s also going to help to restore that stability and like keep it light, keep the reps high. And I find that as an approach really works wonders . I know that , um , I’ve added elbow issues from jujitsu, but also from like a lot of strength training. Sure. And whenever I get to a point where my elbows are getting sore from strength training, I do more isolation work for the biceps and the triceps and it fixes the problem for me. Yeah, definitely. I agree with that guys. Thank you for the questions. If you have something you want to send through, you can post it a voicemail for us, Bulletproof of bjj.com/podcast. And there’s just a little box. They hit it . You leave your message and then we’ll play it on the show and answer it back , uh, on the next upcoming episode . So send us one through , uh , there’s been some really good ones coming through and we’ll have another couple next week. Yes. Anything to add? Not at all. Thank you very much guys. And we’ll see you next time. Thanks legends.
Speaker 1: 40:38