Earlier this year I was lucky enough to be able to buy a new iphone. Well I basically was harassed into it by my hubby as my antique phone was finally dying on me! However the new phone did mean I was able to explore the app store fully but other than getting addicted to Pokemon Go (walking is cardio training after all!) I also found a few free apps that have the potential add to your BJJ experience. So if you’ve got a super kinda santa who gave you a new phone this xmas, are just looking to get that extra training motivation or want something to play with during the festive period then maybe these may help.
In this blog I have deliberately avoided any instructional apps. This was for a few reasons:
- Many of those that were advertised as free still required you to buy content to access more techniques or information.
- I am still a blue belt so whilst I can say if I understand an instructional or like the teaching style but I am not the best placed to judge the actual technical quality.
- Those I have seen don’t really have anything that can’t be found on the internet either free or through a subscription site.
So here is my random selection that I think you may find useful…..
My Fitness Pal – I have to include this one as I have used it for well over a year and have mentioned it in other blogs already. It’s available online as well as for Apple and Android. It basically tracks your diet, exercise and weight loss. It does have the potential to be a little addictive and I have been known to say “sorry I can’t eat that as I only have 200 calories left for today” but the biggest discovery I found was being able to actually eat more and still make weight for competition. I use the free version but you can pay for a premium version which includes more detailed Macro tracking. Definitely one for the competitors or peeps who want a bit of guidance to support their weight loss but maybe start using it after the festive season!
Boxing iTimer Lite – If you gym hasn’t got a posh timer then having an option on your phone is a must. I use this free timer from the Apple App store. You can change the number of rounds, round lengths and break length. It’s basic in terms of the display but it does the job and will enable good drilling rounds and avoid those marathons where you both forget how long it’s been (unless that’s what you want)
Bounts – Again this available on Apple and Android. This isn’t really an app to support training but rather an app that rewards physical activity. If your gym is listed on the site you basically can earn rewards for just going training! You can also earn rewards for more normal things like walking, cycling etc. I’ve been told its available in the US as well as the UK and rewards include donations to charities, competitions and shopping vouchers. Whether receiving an extrinsic reward for training helps keep you motivated or you just like free things it’s worth a try. If you do get the app use referral code wilson13485 and we’ll both earn an extra 100 points.
Evernote – I know some people that swear by Evernote but I have never really gotten used to it. That said I’ve heard about a lot of Black Belts using it for their lesson planning including I believe John WIll so if it’s good enough for them then it can make the list! Evernote can organise pretty much everything including text, pictures and video. The more data you put into it the more you can cross reference or data search (looking for the stuff you did ages ago on half guard – it can find it) It works on any platform but to get the most out it you’ll want to use your laptop and not just the app. There are a host of BJJ specific diaries available online but I’ll be honest. I haven’t really used them. Perhaps another blog in the future!
YouTube – A bit of a no brainer but I’ve found having private personal playlists really useful especially when drilling or between classes. Can’t remember a detail in that sweep? a quick look at the video can help!
Digital Grappling – Not an app (but a mobile enabled website). I helped my husband review this product a while ago. Basically it’s like a “BJJ choose your own adventure” and looks at your decision making process in sparring / competition. I really liked it especially if you’re off the mats for any reason. So I’ve sneakily added it here just in case your gym’s closed and your are stuck for things to do over the xmas period. Its free to try but it does cost $39.97 to access the full program.
My Gym! – Last but not least a little mention to my gym’s app Factory BJJ which is on both Apple and Android and its where we get various gym notifications as well as the ability to book onto our classes etc. Feel free to check it out if you’re ever planning to visit!
I hope you find at least one of these apps useful but if you think I’ve missed something please feel free to shout and let me know!