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Maximizing Efficiency – 4 Time-Efficient Workout Methods For Busy BJJ Athletes

Written by: Kosta Telegadas, Senior Level Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

Executive Contributor Kosta Telegadas

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) is a demanding sport that requires a combination of strength, endurance, flexibility, and agility. However, as a BJJ athlete with a hectic schedule, finding time for comprehensive workouts can be challenging. Fortunately, there are efficient workout methods that can help you stay in peak physical condition without consuming too much of your valuable time. In this blog post, we will cover 4 effective training methods for time-constrained BJJ athletes.

two men competing on martial arts tournament

1. High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

HIIT is a proven method to improve cardiovascular fitness, and endurance, and burn fat in a short amount of time. BJJ athletes can benefit from HIIT by incorporating exercises such as sprints, burpees, and kettlebell swings. A typical HIIT session can last anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes, making it a perfect choice for those with limited time. These intense bursts of activity followed by short rest periods mimic the energy demands of a BJJ match, helping you build both stamina and explosive power.

Sample HIIT workout

  • 30 seconds of burpees

  • 30 seconds rest

  • 30 seconds of kettlebell swings

  • 30 seconds rest

  • 30 seconds of sled backward tow

  • 30 seconds of rest

  • 30 seconds of C2 rower

  • Repeat for 16-24 minutes

two men in martial arts training

2. Supersets

Focus on compound exercises that target multiple muscle groups simultaneously in a giant set or “superset”. This approach allows you to get a full-body workout in a shorter time frame compared to isolation exercises. Key movements like squats, deadlifts, bench presses, and pull-ups engage various muscle groups and enhance overall functional strength. Aim for 3-4 compound exercises per session, performing 3 sets of 8-12 repetitions for each.

Sample compound strength training routine

  • Movement 1: 5x5 – 75% - Trap bar deadlift

  • Movement 2: 4xMax reps – Bodyweight - Chin ups

  • Movement 3: 30 Seconds side plank

  • Followed by 2 minutes rest

man on monkey bar

3. Every Minute on the Minute (EMOMs)

Bodyweight circuits are efficient workouts that require minimal equipment. These routines improve strength, flexibility, and endurance by combining different bodyweight exercises into a continuous flow. The lack of equipment makes it easy to perform these workouts anywhere, making them ideal for athletes on the go. Include exercises like thrusters, rows, carries, cardiovascular equipment, etc; in your circuit for a well-rounded session.

Sample EMOM circuit

  • Minute 1: 8 -12 DB Thrusters

  • Minute 2: 8-12 each - 1 Arm DB rows

  • Minute 3: 50 Feet down and back - 1 Arm farmer carry

  • Minute 4: 8-12 Cal assault bike

  • Minute 5: 8-12 Cal Ski Erg

  • Repeat for 4 rounds Totaling 20 minutes

man exercise at the gym using rope

4. (As Many Rounds As Possible) AMRAPs

AMRAP, or "As Many Rounds As Possible," is an effective and time-efficient training methodology for Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) athletes aiming to enhance their conditioning and mental toughness. This approach involves performing specific exercises or movements within a fixed time frame, pushing individuals to complete as many rounds as possible. AMRAP workouts are particularly beneficial for BJJ practitioners as they simulate the unpredictable and intense nature of a grappling match, where bursts of energy are crucial. Integrating BJJ-specific movements such as takedowns, guard passes, and ground transitions into AMRAP sessions not only builds cardiovascular endurance but also sharpens the specific physical demands required during live sparring. By incorporating AMRAPs into their training regimen, BJJ athletes can elevate their overall fitness, resilience, and ability to perform at their peak during the dynamic challenges of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The example below covers a workout for the weight room only with no BJJ specifics in case no training partners are available.

20-minute AMRAP example

  • Movement 1: 8-12 KB swings

  • Movement 2: 8-12 Lat pulldown

  • Movement 3: 30-second plank

  • Movement 4: 8-12 cal C2 rower

  • Movement 5: Sled push down and back

  • Move through all movements for 20 minutes straight with little to no rest

woman lifting weights


As a BJJ athlete with limited time, finding a workout routine that aligns with your schedule without compromising your performance on the mat is crucial. The key is consistency and dedication to making the most of your time. There is no “perfect training methodology” so make sure to incorporate these time-efficient workout methods, you can stay in top shape and continue to excel in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, even with a busy lifestyle.

If you are looking for BJJ-specific training programs, then reach out by giving my Instagram (@Coach_Telegadas) a follow and messaging me the word. “time”. Now go out there and dominate your opponents on the mats!

Follow me on Instagram, LinkedIn, and visit my website for more info!

Kosta Telegadas Brainz Magazine

Kosta Telegadas, Senior Level Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Kosta Telegadas is a leader in the strength and conditioning for tactical athletes and martial artists all over the world. He found physical training as a necessity to grow up playing sports, help prevent injury & give back to the country that gave his family so much over the generations. Coach Telegadas has a Master's Degree from the University of Miami (FL) and over 7 years of coaching experience with both professional, college, high school & tactical athletes. He is currently the Head Coach/CEO of Telegadas Performance Training and dedicates his time to make physical training programs & remote coaching accessible to all. His mission: If you stay ready, you never have to get ready!



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