Sometimes it’s worst people to get advice from are the best in their field. Marcelo Garcia, one of the greatest jiu-jitsu practitioners, is known for advocating against the use of weight training for jiu-jitsu students. Lifting weights, it is argued, will make students too bulky and inflexible, leaving them unable to perform the necessary moves on the mat.
However, as Jiu-jitsu Times writer Jared Loper points out (Marcelo Garcia is the Exception, not the Rule), athletes like Garcia are often blind to their own genius. Although Garcia was able to be successful without the assistance of strength training, he was an exceptionally talented martial artist. Being physically stronger is always helpful in combat sports, and those less talented than Garcia will undoubtedly benefit from lifting weights.
You can become stronger without putting on too much muscle mass, and martial artists like Josh Barnett, Keenan Cornelius and Andre Galvao — who regularly lift weights – are living proof of the effectiveness of this form of training.