Having a partner to spar with in MMA or BJJ is great, but that isn’t always possible. You may be left without a training pair, or you may be completely alone in the gym.
Fortunately, there is a workaround for such cases – a grappling dummy. And if that’s exactly what you are looking for, then our material will probably interest you.
We are going to showcase 5 great grappling dummies on our today’s review. Each of them is unique, so you may find the best grappling dummy for yourself in the end!
And to help you with making the right choice, we have prepared a handy buying guide.
Let’s now see what our grappling dummies have got!
Best Grappling Dummies On The Market Reviewed
Celebrita MMA grappling dummy seems to be about as versatile as the Ring to Cage dummy we’ve just reviewed. But its benefit is that you have more choices when it comes to size.
Now, it should be mentioned that all the versions come unfilled, so you’ll need to take care of the filling yourself. This, on one hand, allows you to yourself determine the stiffness and weight of the dummy, but on the other, filling can be challenging.
With that being said, let’s get back to size options.
You could choose one of the following sizes – 40” up to 55lb, 47” up to 77lb, 59” up to 99lb, 70” up to 121lb. The former two are suitable for youth, while the rest is good for adults.
As you can see, you could fill the dummy to be rather heavy, which would make it a great option not only for grappling but also for tossing.
Celebrita MMA grappling dummy seems rather rigid and very flexible. However, you could still adjust its firmness by playing around with different filler materials.
It has hands and feet as well, so it will allow performing various ankle and wrist drills.
- Has hands and feet.
- Can be filled to the desired weight.
- Several size options.
- Filling it is a challenge.
And the last dummy on the reviews is another model by Ring to Cage. This one is also a very high-quality grappling dummy, but it isn’t as versatile as the other Ring to Cage dummy.
The thing is that this dummy has no hands, so performing wrist locks and other wrist drills will be close to impossible with it.
Otherwise, this grappling dummy is very close to the other Ring to Cage dummy we reviewed.
An interesting feature in this dummy is the fixed position of its arms. They are held in place by a lace, which may be either good or bad depending on your requirements.
On one hand, the lace will make sure that the arms aren’t flying around and getting in your way while you perform movements. On the other hand, they certainly limit the mobility of the arms, so some moves may be more difficult to perform.
Other than that, this grappling dummy is a rather flexible piece of fighting equipment. Namely, its legs can be adjusted in a variety of positions to allow practicing moves when prone or on the ground.
Ring to Cage offers this grappling dummy in youth (4’6” 30-35lb) and adult (6’ 70-75lb) sizes. And both come filled, so you won’t have to worry about finding a filler for it.
- Flexible construction.
- The arms are fixed in place.
- Available in youth and adult sizes.
- Doesn’t have hands.
- You may dislike the limited movement of the arms.
If you are looking for a cheap grappling dummy, then Daan dummy may be the right pick for you.
In fact, this dummy is also a good choice for home use. But definitely not for gym use since it isn’t durable enough to withstand hours of daily use.
Even though Daan grappling dummy is rather inexpensive, it is quite a versatile model. That’s mainly due to the fact that it has feet and hands.
There are a couple of caveats in it though.
The first one is that the arms of this dummy are unusually short. This isn’t a downside necessarily, but it may require some getting used to from you.
The second caveat is that there is only one size option for this grappling dummy – 70”. At least, it was so at the moment of the review’s writing.
Aside from that, while Daan doesn’t indicate this in their product description, this grappling dummy comes unfilled. So you better prepare some filler material if you’re going to buy this grappling dummy.
In the end, this dummy is a great cheap grappling dummy. It has certain limits in terms of durability, but it is a great dummy nonetheless to train various drills with.
- Allows hand and foot drills.
- Only one size option.
- Requires filling.
- Short arms.
Related: Everlast Powercore
Up next on our reviews of 5 best grappling dummies is a product by Title, a renowned manufacturer of high-quality fighting gear. This grappling dummy is no exception.
The most unique feature of this grappling dummy is that it can be hanged and used for punching. It essentially can serve both as a heavy bag and a grappling dummy.
The weight of this thing is pretty close to that of heavy bags, so you should be able to train your kicks and punches with this thing pretty well. And to allow you to do groundwork conveniently, Title made so that they hanging chain attachment is removable.
While this grappling dummy isn’t very flexible, it can still allow you to do a variety of moves. It has hands, which would allow you to perform wrist locks pretty well.
However, Title MMA dummy doesn’t have feet, so feet drills won’t be really possible with this grappling dummy. Otherwise, all sorts of body and leg locks can be done with it conveniently.
Title offers their dummy in 2 sizes – 70lb 64” and 100lb 68”. No youth sizes, unfortunately, so this dummy is only suitable for adults.
- Can be hanged and used as a heavy bag.
- Removable hanging chain attachment.
- Doesn’t have feet.
- No youth sizes.
Ring to Cage Deluxe grappling dummy is arguably the best grappling dummy we reviewed today. That’s mainly thanks to its versatility.
First off, the body of this grappling dummy is made very flexible, so adjusting it into pretty much any position should be very easy.
Secondly, Ring to Cage grappling dummy has both hands and feet, so it allows performing various kinds of wrist and ankle locks.
Combine these two benefits, and you get a grappling dummy that can be used to train nearly any movement.
Ring to Cage also offers their dummy in youth and adults sizes – the adult size is 6 feet tall and weighs 55-60 pounds, while the youth size weighs 30-35 pounds and is 4.6 feet tall.
And besides, you could also choose between a filled and unfilled dummy. The filled dummies are rather pricey though, so you’d need to have the budget for them.
- Has feet and hands.
- Available in youth and adult sizes.
- Comes both filled and unfilled.
- The filled options are pretty pricey.
Related: Everlast Omniflex
How To Choose The Best Grappling Dummy?
Now that we these 5 grappling dummies reviewed, you might be wondering how to choose the right one. To help you with that, we are now going to examine the features you should be looking for in a grappling dummy.
Types of grappling dummies
Grappling vs throwing
Grappling dummies are lighter, more flexible, and have legs and arms to allow the practice of a wider variety of movements. You could sit a grappling dummy down or lay it on the back to practice pretty much any movement.
Throwing dummies, on the other hand, are heavier and are designed for conditioning. They usually don’t have legs or arms, so the variety of grappling moves that can be done on them is very limited.
Based on the requirements of your discipline, you would need to choose one or the other.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu dummy
BJJ dummies typically come in two positions:
- This position allows practicing submission from closed guard or back. Moves like triangle chokes, kimuras, collar chokes, razor armbars, etc. should be performed on these dummies.
- Lying flat on the back. These dummies allow the practice of simple knee to belly transitions, key locks, and whatnot.
Needless to say, if you are a BJJ fighter, you should go for a dummy for BJJ.
See also: Double end bags
MMA dummies are usually made more durable due to the peculiarities of the sport. In terms of movements, they essentially have the same capabilities as BJJ grappling dummy.
If you are an MMA fighter, then you should definitely get a dummy for MMA rather than for BJJ.
Filled or unfilled
Filled grappling dummies are obviously heavier, which may increase the cost of shipping. In spite of this, filled dummies have several benefits over unfilled dummies.
First of all, the quality of filling is better: it is uniform and equally dense throughout the dummy. Secondly, you won’t have to worry about choosing a dummy filler and then stuffing the dummy with it.
Unfilled dummies, on the other hand, are lighter and are usually shipped at a lower cost. The main benefit of unfilled dummies is that you have complete freedom of what you fill the dummy with.
They also allow you to change the weight of the dummy over time as you gain weight or become stronger.
However, after filling, you may find that the dummy isn’t filled very densely or uniformly. The quality of filling will depend on your skill, which is the main downside of unfilled dummies.
Another downside is that an unfilled dummy plus a filler material may cost more than a filled dummy.
In the end, we think that there is no reason to go for an unfilled dummy, unless you really need its advantages.
Youth or adult size
Grappling dummies come in different sizes, so it’s important that you choose the appropriate one. There is no reason to go too small or big: instead, go for a size that resembles your opponents.
And besides, youth dummies may be too light for adults, and vice versa.
Fortunately, most of the dummies out there have several size options, so it should be fairly easy for you to choose the right size.
Bag with handles
These are essentially boxing bags with handles in several areas. In addition to punches and kicks, these bags are designed for practicing drops or throws.
Bags with handles are usually cheaper than other kinds of grappling dummies, but they don’t allow a very wide variety of movements.
Humanoid with limbs
Thanks to their attractive price and efficiency, humanoid dummies with limbs are used by fighters most commonly. They allow the practice of the vast majority of MMA or BJJ moves, but some things can’t be done with them.
For example, since these dummies have no feet or hands, you can’t train ankle or wrist locks on them. And in general, moves involving the opponents’ hands or feet can’t be practiced on humanoid dummies with limbs.
However, these dummies are great for other types of groundwork, as well as for wrestling.
Humanoid dummies with limbs usually come in a seated position with the arms in front and the legs bent. Some dummies can also be mounted in an upright position, so you’d need to choose one or the other based on your training needs.
Humanoid with limbs and hands
These dummies are the most expensive and versatile of them all. They can be used for pretty much any locks, blocks, and groundwork.
Like humanoid dummies with limbs, these dummies usually come in a seated position and can also be used upright. Because they have feet and hands, they can be used in nearly any style of martial arts.
While expensive, humanoid dummies with limbs and hands certainly can be a great investment. If you get a high-quality grappling dummy, it can serve you for years as you become more experienced.
Most of the grappling dummies you’ll find out there are designed for use in a prone or lying position. These dummies are the most suitable for groundwork.
Prone dummies with hands and legs can be used for elbow and knee locks, while dummies with hands and feet also allow the practice of ankle and wrist locks.
Upright dummies are designed to be used in upright positions. They are most often designed to be hanged to stay upright, though some dummies have rigid frames within them.
With upright dummies, you can train strikes, blocks, and takedowns. They are thereby essentially boxing bags that also allow grappling moves.
Hanging upright dummies can often be adjusted into a prone position. In fact, we’d advise you to get a dummy that can be used both upright and prone.
Ideally, the weight should be light enough to allow you to train without injuring yourself and getting fatigued. After all, the purpose of the dummy is not strength training but practicing various kinds of blocks and locks.
What should I fill an unfilled dummy with?
Unfilled dummies usually come with suggestions for filler materials. You should probably just follow them and not overthink it.
Most of the time, people use materials like cotton batting, sand, or punching bag stuffing. But if you need it, you could go for any other material that you think will make the dummy better for you.
I have kids, but I can’t afford to buy both an adult and youth dummy. What should I do?
You could get an adult dummy and share it with your kids. But only if they can handle the weight of the dummy without too much strain.
The best option would probably be to get an unfilled dummy. It would allow you to adjust its weight so your kids don’t have to deal with a heavy dummy.
Which type of grappling dummy would be the best for a beginner?
This depends on your budget.
If you can afford it, go for a humanoid dummy with feet and hands. Such a dummy would be useful both for beginners and skilled fighters.
In the beginning, you’d be able to learn basic movements. And as an experienced fighter, you would still be able to learn something new and refine your old moves.
Otherwise, you’d need to go from bottom to top as you become more skillful – simple bag with handles, humanoid with limbs, and humanoid with hands and feet. But this would require you to spend more money in the long run.
Now, you should have all the info you need to make the right choice. And this right choice may be any of the 5 grappling dummies we reviewed!
If you liked one of them, then you should go and get it.