The Best Grappling Dummies For MMA & BJJ

Searching around on the internet trying to found out what the best grappling dummy is and just how to go about choosing the best one..

Well, you’ve come to the right place.

That must be the most commonly asked question by a wrestler, a martial artist or an MMA fighter who wants to train his take downs, submission, throwing, grappling and the likes without the risk of injuring his sparring partner or if you don’t have a sparring partner when you need one.

Martial arts, judo, BJJ and wrestling are all combat sports, so practice would normally include a partner to spar with. Of course, not everyone can be a training partner because there’s a risk of injury to both the partner and the fighter.

Training however shouldn’t be stopped just because there’s no one available to train with. This is where the right training tools become essential.

Some training tools were designed to specifically develop a skill to help the player improve, and there are others which were designed not only to improve a skill but also as a good substitute for a training partner, like a grappling dummy.

A fighter or a wrestler should be using a grappling dummy that is best suited to his needs in order for him to develop his skills.

Aside from the body aches they have to endure, they must have spent a lot of time in training and practice which requires a lot of dedication, discipline and sacrifice.

Read on to find out which grappling dummy you need and how to find the best one for you.

What is a grappling dummy?

A grappling dummy is a human shaped stuffed figure (like a big doll or mannequin), that can be used to practice take downs, submissions, pound and ground, kicks, punches and the like.

Basically, as the name suggests, it is used to practice grappling.

You can use a grappling dummy to practice a movement until your body gets used to doing it or you get used to the feeling of the movement that it becomes second nature to you.

When you keep doing the same movement over and over, it becomes instilled in your muscle memory. During an actual fight or tournament, your body automatically remembers the move and does it even without you putting much thought on it.

Just as George St. Pierre says, when you are fighting “you don’t really think, you just act”.

Training and practicing repetition trains a good fighter. You train your subconscious to act. You will know what to do in a certain situation. You don’t want to have to think about every move you make.

Doing an action repeatedly with a live partner however, may lead to injuries not just to the fighter but also to the partner.

It can be tough on a person if he is being taken down or pounded for several hours every day. It may cause some of the muscles in your body to be strained. This is why a grappling dummy would come in handy.

You can practice with a grappling dummy for hours and not worry about the dummy getting tired or needing to rest.

As long as you have the budget, it is easy to get a grappling dummy. The tricky part is choosing the one that is appropriate to the skill you want to develop to ensure you get the best out of practice.

Grappling dummies are designed to help you improve so it has two types for specific purposes.

What are the different types of grappling dummies?

Throwing & Striking

The first type is the throwing and striking dummies. They are used to practice take downs and striking. Usually, they are in a standing position.

Grappling & Submission

The second type is the grappling and submission dummies. They are used for ground work drills like side control submission and from the guard. Usually, they are in the sitting position and is lighter than the throwing and striking type.

Whatever the type is, grappling dummies will allow you to perfect the skills that you need to be competitive. So what are the top grappling dummies that you can choose from?

The top grappling dummies are:

#

Name

OUR RATING

1

Title MMA Grappling Dummy

2

Combat Sports Submission Dummy

3

Ring to Cage Grappling Dummy

4

Ring to Cage Grappling Dummy 3.0

5

Celebrita Grappling Dummy (Sitting)

6

Celebrita Grappling Dummy (Standing)

Grappling dummies are normally used by martial artists, MMA fighters and wrestlers as their sports involve grappling your opponent.

In no way can it replace the actual experience of training with a real live partner but it still gives you the chance to enhance your skills anytime without relying on someone else’s availability.

Let’s take a look at what benefits you can get in using a grappling dummy.

What Are The Benefits And Drawbacks of Using a Grappling Dummy?

Benefits

  • This is a very good tool to develop new moves. As you keep doing the practice or drills, the action becomes en grained into your body that it becomes second nature.
  • It is portable and a very good substitute for a sparring partner anytime with no risk of hurting your partner.
  • You can train specific holds, submissions, sweeps and throws using a grappling dummy by adjusting its positions.
  • It can give you a realistic experience as the grappling dummies weights are close to that of a live person.
  • You don’t have to worry about your dummy getting tired so you control the length of your training time.

Although there are a lot of advantages in using a grappling dummy, we should also be aware of its disadvantages so we can know its limitations.

Drawbacks

  • Not all of the dummy models have limbs which limits the moves that you can practice.
  • You won’t be able to adjust the resistance of the dummy to a move you make.
  • The best grappling dummies are always of high quality so they are a bit on the pricey side.
As there are different brands of grappling dummies, there are a lot of things you need to consider before buying one. Here are a few things to check out before making a decision.

What To Look For In The Best Grappling Dummy

Should you choose a filled dummy or an unfilled one?

Whether it is filled or unfilled is a factor to consider when choosing the grappling dummy that is best for you.

Most manufacturing companies would normally give you a choice between a filled and an unfilled grappling dummy.

You would be able to save a few dollars in buying an unfilled one and you can fill it up as you wish with the filling material of your choice but a filled one would save you the time and hassle.

If you want to use sand to fill your grappling dummy, it can also be a bit messy.

What material is it made of and would it last long?

The quality of material is also an important factor in choosing your grappling dummy.

Grappling dummies are expensive, therefore you should get one that can last long even when you are repeatedly beating it during practice.

Canvas, polyester coated vinyl and military grade nylon are the materials most commonly used by the companies that are manufacturing grappling dummies.

Materials with higher quality would obviously cost much more than the not so expensive materials. They would however most probably last longer than a cheap grappling dummy which would save you more money in the long run.

Should it be flexible or stiff?

Quality grappling dummies should have the right amount of flexibility. If you are training your strikes and takedowns, your dummy should have a stiff build. If you want a grappling dummy for submissions it should have rigid joints yet flexible.

It would be hard to move the dummy into the positions of submission if it lacks flexibility but it would also be too easy and unrealistic if it has too much flexibility.

What size should I get and how much should it weight?

Another factor to consider is the weight and size of the grappling dummy. You would want to practice with a grappling dummy that has a similar weight or closest to the weight of your opponent or human training partner.

Grappling dummies would actually weigh less than an actual person because of the dead weight of course, as compared to a person who is alive and can move. An adult size dummy would weigh around 60lbs.

Can I Throw A Gi On My Dummy For A More Realistic Experience?

If you are training for Judo and BJJ, then last but not the least of your considerations is whether or not the grappling dummy can wear a Gi.

The best grappling dummy is one that should be able to give you a realistic experience during practice. So if your sport is BJJ or Judo, the dummy to look for is one that is able to wear a Gi so you can practice techniques like choking Gi.

Are you now ready to head out and buy your own grappling dummy? Hold on for just a second and read a bit more.

Keep in mind that there are a lot of grappling dummies to choose from. To help you pick which one suits you, we’ve listed a few below and included a few notes on why they are the best.

Title MMA Grappling Dummy

Quality

Price

Our Rating

Title is a trusted brand when it comes to long lasting products so we can expect this dummy to be durable.

This is one of the most versatile dummy models as it can provide a training session that is so well-rounded. This can be used to train your grappling, submissions, take downs, striking, ground and pound and even heavy bag workouts.

This can be used as a standing heavy bag (used to work on building up power on strikes) as it comes with two-rubber tie down cables and a hanging chain that is removable.

This has two sizes and uses super strength synthetic leather for its exterior which makes it very heavy-duty.

It is available in 70lbs (64”) and 100lbs (68”) allowing you to able to fit this in tight spaces.

This is already filled so you can use this immediately upon opening.

Advantages

  • This can be used as a grappling dummy as well as a heavy bag
  • It is made of high quality materials
  • It is durable
  • It is already filled
  • You can use this for both ground work and stand up drills

Disadvantages

  • This grappling dummy only has one color.
6 Reviews

Title MMA Grappling Dummy

  • This can be used as a grappling dummy as well as a heavy bag
  • It is made of high quality materials
  • Combat Sports Submission Grappling Dummy
  • Quality

    Price

    Our Rating

    You can train both standing up and on the ground with this dummy as it comes in an upright position. This is great for takedowns and submission training but the arm bars can’t be fully extended as its arms are not movable.

    This grappling dummy is made of military-grade vinyl material that makes it easy to clean since it does not absorb much sweat.

    Only pre-filled dummies are available which can be an advantage as you won’t have to do the extra effort of finding suitable material as well as the time to fill it up.

    The Combat Sports Grappling Dummy is also considered as one of the most durable dummies in the market and can last you a long time.

    As you probably already know as it was mentioned earlier in this article, the right grappling dummy should have the right size (almost the same as that of your target opponent) and weight. If the dummy is too big or too heavy for you, it can hinder your training as it can limit your movement.

    The sizes available for the Combat Sports Submission Dummy are:

    Weight Size:

    • 70lb 5’-4” tall
    • 90lb 5’-6” tall
    • 120lb 5’-10” tall
    • 140lb 5-10” tall

    Advantages

    • It gives great value for your money
    • It can be used for both on the ground and standing drills as it is very versatile
    • It is long lasting as it was manufactured using military grade materials
    • It is available in different weights and sizes

    Disadvantages

    • Its arm bars can’t be fully extended
    • This is only available in black
    82 Reviews

    Combat Sports Submission Grappling Dummy

    • It can be used for both on the ground and standing drills as it is very versatile
    • It is long lasting as it was manufactured using military grade materials

    Ring to Cage Grappling Dummy 3.0

    Quality

    Price

    Our Rating

    Jiu-Jitsu Magazine has rated this as the top grappling dummy. This is one of the best grappling dummies on the market to date.

    This grappling dummy used high quality materials which helps in avoiding the sweat from seeping in and makes cleaning it easy.

    It is made of 22oz polyester coated vinyl. Its seams also has reinforced stitching for added durability.

    The unfilled grappling dummy is cheaper by $100 than the filled one but the filled one is a lot faster and easier to set up. If you are not willing to spend extra though, you may opt for the unfilled one and fill it with textile rags.

    Adult and youth sizes are also available for this.

    If you are looking to improve your groundwork, this is the best grappling dummy for you. This would however not help your striking or throwing as this dummy can’t stand up on its own.

    This grappling dummy’s entire body is also in proportion so it can be used to make moves like leg or arm triangles.

    The 3.0 version is the improved version of the Ring to Cage Grappling Dummy as it now has hands and feet.

    This grappling dummy comes in a sitting position but you can also stretch it out to flatly lie on the floor so you can train your inside guard and your guard including different control positions like North South, side control and full mount.

    With the dummy straightened out, you can practice your takedowns and throws.

    When filled, the adult size dummy weighs 70-75lbs while the youth size is around 35lbs.

    The adult size is comparable to a 6ft tall person while the youth size is like a 4ft 6inch tall person.

    The Ring to Cage Dummy youth size is considered as one of the best grappling dummies for teenagers and beginners.

    Advantages

    • It has the filled and unfilled options
    • It has great body proportions
    • It is durable and of high quality
    • You can choose from two sizes

    Disadvantages

    • This grappling dummy leans on the more expensive side
    • For stand up drills training, you would need a different dummy
    • It is hard to fill its unfilled version
    9 Reviews

    Ring To Cage Grappling Dummy 3.0

    • The Ring to Cage Dummy youth size is considered as one of the best grappling dummies for kids and beginners.
    • It is durable and of high quality

    Ring to Cage Grappling & Submission Dummy

    Quality

    Price

    Our Rating

    This is one of the least expensive grappling dummies without sacrificing its durability.

    When a training partner is not available, this is a very good substitute to train your groundwork. You can use this to practice in full guard.

    Even if you can’t use this dummy for stand up drills and running as it is in kneeling position, you can still use this to practice taking the back of your opponents by putting this on its hands and knees.

    Even if you can’t give the full benefits of practicing with a live person when you are using a grappling dummy, the Ring to Cage dummy can still give you a realistic experience since its hands and feet have a nice flexibility that provides just the right amount of resistance without making it difficult to move.

    Just like the other available dummies, the unfilled one cost less than the filled one.

    When filled, the adult size weighs 70-75lbs while the child size weighs 30-35 lbs.

    The adult size is equivalent to a 6 foot tall person while the child size is like 4 foot 6 inches tall person.

    Advantages

    • You can choose from filled or unfilled
    • Available to kids and adults
    • Long lasting

    Disadvantages

    • It is only available in one color
    9 Reviews

    Ring To Cage Grappling & Submission Dummy

    • This is one of the least expensive grappling dummies without sacrificing its durability.
    • The adult size is equivalent to a 6 foot tall person while the child size is like 4 foot 6 inches tall person.

    Celebrita Grappling Dummy (Sitting)

    Quality

    Price

    Our Rating

    This is considered as one of the best grappling dummies for adults, youths and even kids as it is available in different sizes from 40” all the way up to 70”.

    Size Weight Option Best for

    • 40” 49lb Filled Kids
    • 40” Up to 55lb Unfilled Kids
    • 47” 55lb Filled Kids/Youth
    • 47” Up to 77lb Unfilled Kids/Youth
    • 59” 57lb Filled Adults
    • 59” Up to 99lb Unfilled Adults
    • 70” 60lb Filled Adults
    • 70” Up to 121lb Unfilled Adults

    Keep in mind that the right grappling dummy is the one that is suitably sized to match your body. The smaller ones might be cheaper but that’s just it… it’s a cheap grappling dummy, you do not want that, as they are typically junk.

    There is a canvas version as well as a leather version for this dummy.

    Although not as expensive, sweat can easily seep into the canvas material which makes it harder to clean than the leather one.

    Just air out your dummy for several hours when it gets soaked with perspiration to reduce the smell.

    This dummy brand and model is also available in three different colors. You can choose from black, red and blue.

    This Celebrita Grappling Dummy comes in a sitting position but you can still move its arms into various positions so you can do training on the ground in multiple positions with different moves.

    When you position this dummy on all fours, you can use it to train your turtle position which is a confusing attack position to those new to BJJ.

    Along with their other ground work drills, this dummy also allows a fighter to practice their ground and pound as this has a printed target on its head.

    It comparison to the Ring to Cage model, the Celebrita model takes less time and is not as hard to fill. A filled version is also available.

    The Celebrita Grappling Dummies are known to give life like training experience as it has the right amount of resistance when used for training.

    Advantages

    • You can choose from a variety of colors
    • The leather covered one prevents sweat from seeping in so it is easier to clean
    • It comes in different materials to choose from
    • It is available in filled and unfilled
    • It is durable and high quality

    Disadvantages

    • The canvas version absorbs sweat easily due to its material and would smell easily
    • You would need to spend money for the filling if you are buying the unfilled one
    • You would need to buy another dummy to train for stand up drills

    Celebrita Grappling Dummy (Sitting)

    • This Celebrita Grappling Dummy comes in a sitting position but you can still move its arms into various positions so you can do training on the ground in multiple positions with different moves.
    • It is durable and high quality

    Celebrita Grappling Dummy (Standing)

    Quality

    Price

    Our Rating

    Just like the Celebrita Grappling Dummy Sitting version, the standing version also comes in a variety of materials, sizes and colors. We still prefer leather over canvas because it is a lot easier to maintain.

    Only the largest size, which is the 70” version, comes as filled. The rest are unfilled so you would need to take the extra time and effort to fill it up.

    The sizes available are:

    Size Weight Best for

    • 40” up to 25kg/55lb Kids
    • 47” up to 35kg/77lb Larger Kids/Youths
    • 59” up to 45kg/99lb Adults
    • 70” up to 55kg/121lb Larger Adults

    Once again, make sure you get a grappling dummy that suits your needs so you can fully develop your skills. The right grappling dummy should not be too heavy as it will strain your body and would not be good for you, nor should it be too light that it would not give a life-like experience.

    This dummy is in standing position so you could use it to train on the floor for ground based drills and standing up for stand up drills.

    This dummy’s legs are straight out and its arms are in a fighting position to make it versatile enough to be used for exercises and drills on take downs, kicks, punches and elbows and knees.

    You can also use this for submission on the ground drills because it has a tough and rigid design and can thus help develop your from standing to ground work transitions.

    If you want to practice some Gi chokes, the Celebrita Grappling dummy is also a perfect partner as you place a Gi on it.

    Same with the sitting version, there is also a printed target on its head for pound and ground drills.

    With all these information available to you, I hope you would be able to make the best decision in choosing the best grappling dummy for you.

    Advantages

    • You can choose from a variety of colors
    • Has many available sizes
    • You can use this for ground work as well as standing drills due to its versatility
    • Has a high quality built

    Disadvantages

    • The canvas version absorbs sweat easily due to its material and would smell easily
    • Only the largest size is filled so for other sizes, you would need to spend time and money to fill the dummy up
    10 Reviews

    Celebrita Grappling Dummy (Standing)

    • You can use this for ground work as well as standing drills due to its versatility
    • Has a high quality built
    We’ve even prepared some grappling dummy FAQs if you still have some doubts.

    Grappling Dummy FAQs:

    How do I fill an unfilled grappling dummy?

    You start filing up your dummy from the bottom until you reach the top.

    You can stuff your dummy with textiles that are shredded. Maybe a shredded blanket or towel. You can also use shredded paper and even sand.

    Grappling dummies are typically filled completely so if you are filling yours, use an object like a stick or a broom to make sure your dummy stuffed fully. Make sure that every space in the dummy is filled.

    An unfilled dummy is a lot cheaper than a filled one but manually filling it would take time and effort on your end.

    Would I still need a live training partner when I already have a grappling dummy?

    Even though a lot of the best grappling dummies provide a realistic experience, it still can’t replace a live person.

    A live partner will be able to provide resistance or try to escape which your actual opponent would be trying his best to do. A grappling dummy would not be able to do just that.

    A grappling dummy is best though when you don’t have anyone to train with or you are just practicing at home.

    What are some of the drills you can practice using a grappling dummy?

    If you are a new MMA fighter, you can training using the 10 Count Drill. This will help you get used to different dominant positions.

    If you looking to develop submission from the full guard position, you can run the Grappling Submission Flow Drill.

    What are the trusted and well known grappling dummy brands?

    A master in producing equipment for MMA, Celebrita is a brand that is widely used in fitness gyms all over the world. They make high quality punching bags and mma dummies.

    If you are looking for fight gears like boxing gloves and BJJ Gi’s, Ring to Cage is the go to brand. They are known to produce fight gear that are durable and with very high standards.

    Top Grappling Dummies Comparison

    If we are to compare these six grappling dummies based on the price and the star ratings given to them, the Combat Sports Submission Dummy is the cheapest one followed by Title MMA Grappling Dummy.

    The Ring to Cage Grappling Dummy and both the Celebrita Grappling Dummy Sitting and Standing follows next with the Ring To Cage Grappling Dummy 3.0. emerging as the most expensive.

    For star rating, the Combat Sports Submission Dummy has the lowest rating of four stars. The Title MMA Grappling Dummy and the Ring to Cage Grappling Dummy both received four and a half stars.

    The Ring to Cage Grappling Dummy 3.0 and both the Celebrita Grappling Dummy Sitting and Standing received five stars each.

    Best Grappling Dummies: Our Recommendation

    So which one do we recommend?

    It all depends on you. Whatever sport you choose, be it wrestling or MMA or judo or BJJ, you need to keep in mind that part of your training is having the right training tools. You also need to consider where you live. Do you live in a tight space such as an apartment or do you have more room?

    Grappling dummies are not cheap, so in choosing the grappling dummy as a substitute sparring partner, don’t forget to check for the things that need to be considered, what moves you want to practice and make sure that you get the right size and weight.

    The right training tool can help sharpen the skills that you want so you can get better and reach your goals.

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