Floor Bags: Training Solo in Grappling Sports

Striking based sports such as Boxing or Muay Thai, have obvious ways of training solo. Shadow boxing, Kata in Karate, and of course, simply striking a range of heavy bags, are just a few examples of the way a stand up fighter can train alone.

However, in Grappling based sports, the lay of the land is different. That’s why floor bags should be an essential item for anyone involved in BJJ, wrestling or any floor based martial art.

In this article we look at why, for martial arts such as Wrestling, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and the ground phase of Mixed Martial Arts, practising floor based drills is often seen as a challenge when no partner is available.

For example, advanced practitioners of grappling sports can often incorporate solo training drills, somewhat akin to boxing shadow work, into their routines. However, most of the less advanced Grapplers I’ve witnessed tend to do a little warm up if alone and then wait for class. Grappling classes often don’t teach using much equipment. Therefore students often have no idea on the possibilities of using the most strategic pieces of equipment for training solo.

It would be true to say, for the more grappling orientated martial arts such as wrestling, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Mixed Martial Arts, practising floor based drills can therefore be a challenge without an available partner.

Get A Dummy!

The answer to the issue here is obtaining a floor bag or grappling dummy.

Working with a floor bag can be excellent for position training, practising guard passes, ground and pound drills for MMA and a host of other drills.

The grappling dummy or floor bag should be seen to be as essential as a heavy bag is for a boxer, or a 6ft bag is for a Muay Thai fighter. When you compare how stand up fighters view equipment, there is no reason why grappler’s should not treat their equipment the same way.

The problem is, when choosing a grappling dummy, or floor bag as they are sometimes known, many people don’t know what the best option is for the sport they are participating in.

Revgear makes several options in this sphere.

So we decided to ask BJJ Black belt and full time MMA coach Pete Irving to review our two best sellers. Check out his comparison video here.

Just like the striking equivalent, a floor bag can be used for a wide variety of drills and routines. Some are technical drills, some positional and others concentrate on physical conditioning.

Again, like with different varieties of boxing bags, floor bags come in different styles aimed at different uses. So if you intend to practise alone, often it may even be useful to have more than one version for different training methods.

After doing the comparison for us, Pete took the bags, and built a series of drills for both bags, which we recorded and produced into a short instructional series. So we hope you enjoy the first of our series on training using the floor bags.

Go to the Video Tutorials section of Revgearsports.com here to check out the series!


Alex Wright Alex Wright is well known in the United Kingdom from his extensive work in the Mixed Martial Arts Industry for over a decade. He's been involved as a coach, fighter and industry mogul since around 2000 and now heads up the European division for REVGEAR Sports.