Selecting the right grappling dummy is crucial for anyone looking to improve their submission skills, both in and out of the gym. However, with a number of options available to choose from, it can be difficult to determine which one best fits your specific needs. From examining what a grappling dummy is to looking at the various types that are available, the following provides all the information you need to consider when buying a grappling dummy.
What is a Grappling Dummy?
A grappling dummy is a training device designed to help anyone with a desire to hone their grappling, throwing, and submission skills when a human partner is not available. Used by individuals practicing mixed martial arts (MMA), Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ), wrestling, judo, and other contact sports, grappling dummies are perfect for use at home and in the gym.
Types of Grappling Dummies
When you are searching for a grappling dummy, it is important to understand that some are meant primarily for throwing and striking, while others are intended for anyone practicing their submission tactics.
Throwing and striking dummies are ideal for anyone who will be practicing powerful throws, takedowns, and ground-and-pound exercises. Unfortunately, they do have fixed stances and inflexible limbs that make it almost impossible to put them into submission moves.
Submission dummies are intended for anyone who plans to practice submissions within the fighter or dummy’s guard, as well as chokes and side control. Due to their position and being lighter weight than throwing and striking dummies, they aren’t really intended for practicing throwing moves.
What to Consider When Purchasing Your Grappling Dummy
There are certain factors that you should pay careful attention to when purchasing a grappling dummy. They include:
Weight: This is particularly important if you will be practicing throwing and striking. The right weight allows you to move it, but also offers enough of a challenge to promote improvement. Typically, your heavier grappling dummies should be used for striking and ground-and-pound tactics, while a lighter, limp dummy is ideal for practicing throws.
Height: The best dummy is one that is close in height to the fighter. This makes it easier to handle and more realistic.
Flexibility: Flexibility is of the utmost importance. A grappling dummy with especially stiff limbs prevents it from being bent into submission, but one that is too flexible doesn’t offer enough resistance for a training experience that is realistic. You want to look for a dummy that has limbs that are able to return to their original position when released. When it is placed in position, the dummy should have the ability to bend at the elbows and knees, while maintaining the structure of its arms and legs. This ensures a wider submission range from various positions.
Durability: Grappling dummies can be expensive, so you don’t want to have to replace them very often. Look for one that is made of the highest-quality materials, has multiple rows of reliable stitching, and can handle frequent beatings.
Ability to fit in a Gi: Dressing a grappling dummy in a gi can keep it cleaner and makes the experience more realistic. To determine if a dummy will fit, check its flexibility and positioning.
Versatility: This involves how many drills can be performed with the same grappling dummy. Obviously, the greater the number of drills that can be completed, the more you will get for your money.
A Look at Some of Your Best Options
Although there are plenty to choose from, here are two of the highest rated grappling dummies currently available.
Submission Master: Considered to be one of the most realistic grappling dummies on the market, a Submission Master is made from Denier Cordura and is resistant to both tearing and moisture. Giving the user the ability to practice a wider array of submissions and techniques than any other grappling dummies on the market, It can used for everything from MMA and BJJ to grappling, wrestling, and throwing. A Submission Master easily returns to its original position without having to stop and reposition it after every rep, yet holds multiple positions to ensure fighters get plenty of variety when using their techniques. The Submission Master is priced at $495 for an adult version and $249 for a children’s size.
Bubba II Grappling Dummy: Considered to be one of the most versatile grappling dummies on the market, the Bubba II Grappling Dummy has a body design that is realistic and includes anatomically correct joints. Essentially a hybrid dummy, it can be used for submission grappling, as well as for practicing striking/ throwing moves. As a result, it is best used as a MMA training dummy. Standing 5’10” tall and weighing between 60 and 70 pounds, it can be placed in a standing or sitting position. Created with an internal foam that is tightly packed and sturdily stitched together, the Bubba II Grappling Dummy retails for $675.
A grappling dummy is a great investment for anyone who is intent on getting plenty of practice in, whether in the gym or not. However, it is important to choose the best one for your specific needs. Using the information above, you can find the one for you.