I have been frustrated lately by my lack of training time. Work has kept me from class for awhile now. Would you recommend the Bubba dummy as a reliable training partner for home? I'm thinking of buying one.
No, not as a substitute for a real training partner. You can't practice anything that requires any kind of resistance. And frankly, most people will not have the discipline to use it enough to make it worth it.
I think Kyles is right to a certain degree.
Having a "real live" training partner is important and valuable. BUT there are certain things which are hard to practice with a training partner. A training partner is good for some things BUT not all things.
So having a "tool" like this Bubba dummy is useful. BUT only for the development coordination and repetition of essential and fundamental movements (I don't care what anyone tells you no person is going to "take" you working on holddown transitions or chokes repetitiously on them. Believe me, I tried it both as the person being held down or choked and the person doing the holddowns and chokes. It is simply hell for the person on the receiving end). So for doing basic movements like various holds, escapes and submissions a grappling dummy is very good, as long as you understand that doing those movements on the dummy essentially only develops your ability to move and transition as well as coordination. In other words it provides a different type of training/practice stimulus for you that is hard to get from a training partner..
I would certainly take a long look at my "discipline" before spending a large sum of money on a grappling dummy. There is nothing worse than spending alot of money on something you'll rarely use.
I know people have plans dealing with going to Home Depot and getting PVC pipes and other material to make your own dummy. But would this work? Get an old Gi and fill it with something and sew it together? Don't know about the head, but you could probably come up with something. It wouldn't have any hands or feet though but you could probably practice some basic straight armlocks and stuff with it?
I put together a dummy myself, and used it a lot the first couple days, and then less and less.
Personally, I did not have the discipline to use it frequently by myself. It was easier for me to get my training in on a live person.
The one thing it was great for was practicing chokes, so that I could apply them waayyyy more times than a training partner would (or should) have to endure.
Making a grappling dummy is relatively easy. What it depends on mostly is what exactly your going to traing and practice on while using the dummy.
I took one of those thick kicking shields and put a gi around it. I placed pillows in the sleeves and "BOOM" I have a grappling dummy for my needs.
I use it to practice chokes, armlocks and holddown transitions (moving from holddown to holddown). For holddowns I place a medcine ball underneath the grappling dummy so I have a solid reference point to apply pressure.
For practicing passing the guard I basically took some old pair of pants, filled each leg with some old clothes and tied off the bottom. I place then pants on the ground and place a 12lbs med ball on the waist/hip area of the pants. The medball is where I focus applying my body weight. I move the pants leg in the exact same way I would passing someones guard.
Believe me it doesn't take much to create and develop equipment like a grappling dummy. The whole thing can be very inexpensive. I think the key is to FIRST think of exactly what it is you waht to consistantly practice and then devise the equipment around that. You don't have to have or make an elaborate grapping dummy if you only want to use it for choking practice or armlock practice or holddown practice or guard passing. Think of it like this a heavy bag, a speed bag and a double end bag are all equipments used in boxing. They are all bags BUT each one serves a different purpose. And this purpose is what the bag in and of itself is designed for. I think the same principle can be applied when developing equipment for grappling practice.
I use a basketball to practice triangle chokes. I have a basketball I specifically use for that purpose. I use innertubes for throwing practice. You can also create a dummy specifically for that purpose.
My point is creating and developing "tools" that will help you to "practice" is relatively easy. The key is YOU, the individual, has to be smarter then the tools you want to create. That is, you have to use your mind, be innovative and more importantly KNOW EXACTLY what it is you want to develop and practice.
How do you use a basketball to practice triangle chokes and
use inner tubes for throws. Do you do anything specific?
Using a basketball for triangle chokes is pretty easy, just take a basketball and perform a triangle choke on it. Make sure the ball isn't inflated all the way. Use a basketball that is sort of flat but not deflated, that is, a basketball that has some air in it not a flat ball, just make sure it isn't filled all the way. There isn't anything wrong with using a completely filled ball BUT you get a better feel when you use a ball that is somewhat flat. It is easier to comform to the shape thus better to practice applying pressure to it when you do the triangle on it. Incidently that is the purpose of using the basketball to practice triangle chokes, you want to get the feel of applying pressure, something you can't "practice" on a live person.
Using tire inner tubes for throwing practice is something both Judokas and wrestlers do to develop their grips and entries. It is hard to explain.
www.abband.com sells a inner tubes and videos which shows how you can use inner tubes for practicing throws. The site has sample videos and pictures showing how it is used.
Hey, this got interesting. :-)
For the record, I have a Bubba, and he kicks my ass. Sigh.
Bubba rocks! I haven't trained regularly in years and it's the only thing I have close to a training partner these days.
That will change, soon, hopefully.