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Does Lifting Weights Improve Your Jiu-Jitsu Performance?

Few things are as cool as being able to throw down and submit an opponent, then go to the gym a few days later and set a new bench press personal record.

But should you do the two things at the same time? Would lifting weights improve your Jiu-Jitsu performance? Read on to find out.

Can I Lift Weights and Do Jiu-Jitsu Training Together?

The short answer? Absolutely yes.

The long answer? Improving your strength, muscle endurance, and explosive power will enhance your Jiu-Jitsu performance, but you need to be careful with how you go about attaining them.

How to Lift And Train Jiu-Jitsu

You can mix many types of training and achieve modest results with all of them. But keep in mind that the thinner you spread your focus, the less progress you’ll be able to make in any single direction. In other words, if you want to get good at something, give it your focus for a period time.

When mixing Jiu-Jitsu and weight training, it mostly comes down to recoverability and being able to train each discipline in a fresh state. Meaning, you mostly have to take care of:

  • Making an intelligent weekly training schedule

  • Not doing too much work

  • Taking care of your sleep and nutrition

First, take a look at your weekly Jiu-Jitsu training, given that it matters more than lifting weights. For example, if you train three times per week, this means you also have four recovery days you can use to lift weights. Of course, you shouldn’t train every day because your body needs time to recover.

Let’s say that you train BJJ on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. You can add a couple of weight sessions and still give your body two full days to recover. Like so:

  • Monday - BJJ

  • Tuesday - Weights (strength-focused)

  • Wednesday - BJJ

  • Thursday - Weights (higher repetitions)

  • Friday - BJJ

  • Saturday & Sunday - recovery

Second, it’s crucial to manage the amount of work you do in each session. You could do a bit of training five days per week and recover just fine. But doing too much can significantly slow down your recovery and worsen the quality of your subsequent workouts. As a rule of thumb, you should feel relatively fresh for each session, and soreness shouldn’t linger for more than two to three days after training.

Third, you need to get enough sleep, plenty of calories, and various nutrients to support your recovery and perform well. This means:

  • Sleep at least seven hours per night; ideally - eight

  • Get plenty of calories and avoid cutting weight on such high-frequency training

  • Consume plenty of high-quality protein and complex carbs to support muscle recovery and glycogen levels


When used correctly, weight training can complement your BJJ practice and help you hone your skills well. But you need to be careful when mixing the two and listen to your body at all times.

If you’re looking for the proper guidance in martial arts and mixing that training with other activities, come down to our studio in Santa Clarita - Dream Martial Arts and Fitness.


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