Today I am going to talk about the best way to improve your cardio for bjj. I receive this question a lot. My answer is simple, there’s not much you can do outside bjj. You can run or swim but nothing is better than rolling. If you want to improve your cardio then try rolling more at your school and you can roll longer and harder.

Many times when I visit schools I see people doing the warm ups, the techniques and then when its time to roll, they roll 20-30 minutes. They roll with a white belt, a blue belt, they just stay in their comfort zone. They don’t really push themselves.

I suggest that if you really want to get very good cardio to compete at the professional level then I recommend that you try to roll 50 minutes everyday with the hardest guys. This will make your cardio good. You will also tap a lot, keep that in mind. You’ll get tired and someone will tap you. But at that time when you are tired and going against another tough guy, this is what will make your cardio better because you will get used to training tired and then your cardio will improve as well.


Many times I hear people complain about their cardio but they do a roll and then they rest a roll. They go drink water or come back late or don’t even do the second roll at all. I suggest to try to do all rolls in a row, one after the other with the toughest guys everyday. This will push your cardio.

In my opinion, nothing will improve your cardio more than rolling. You can run or swim but nothing is better than rolling. Try to roll as much as you can with the toughest guys that push you in training. Pick that guy that passes your guard and pull guard against him. Pick that guy that has a good guard game and try to pass his guard. Go against that heavy guy and pull guard. This is what will push your cardio. If you want to do strength and conditioning and running or swimming outside of jiujitsu that is fine. But nothing is better than rolling to improve your cardio.

I always try to roll as hard as I can in the school, always one roll after another and it helps my cardio a lot.

If you want to understand better about physical conditioning for BJJ make sure to check out my interview with my conditioning coach Kevin Paretti, just click here.


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