All things aside, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a martial art and combat sport. And, just like it is the case with any combat sport, chances are that you’ll get injured somewhere along the line. However, even though injuries are (almost) inevitable – sometimes, they just happen – there are some ways of injuring yourself that are simply flat out stupid.
Here are the 5 most stupid ways to getting injured in BJJ.
STUPID WAY #1: NOT TAPPING
Perhaps the most surefire way for injuring yourself is by not tapping when you need to tap.
You may be thinking: „Well, I didn’t injure myself, it was my training partner/opponent.“ You’re wrong. If you’re in training and your training partner is submitting you, it’s your responsibility to tap. While they may be responsible for not cranking submissions, even the most carefully applied Kimura, Armbar, Heel Hook or whatever else can lead to a (serious) injury if you don’t tap out in time.
In competition, you need to keep in mind that this is a martial art. You’ve signed up for the possibility of getting submitted, and your opponents are going to try and make that happen; so, it’s your responsibility to tap when you need to.
STUPID WAY #2: SOMEONE HITTING OR FALLING ON TOP OF YOU
When there’s a lot of people inside a gym and the rolling part begins, you can bet that people will, well, roll into one another. This is bound to happen. However, what doesn’t have to happen is people slamming or falling on each other.
This is how gruesome injuries happen. To make sure that you don’t get injured this way, whenever someone is rolling or doing standup near you – back away. Don’t get caught up in the whole „you should move, not us“ polemic; the safest option is for you and your training partner to move first.
STUPID WAY #3: NOT WARMING UP AND STRETCHING
Yeah, we know that warm ups are boring and that you’ll stretch „at home“. But we also know that if you tie in too many sessions without warming up and/or stretching, that you’ll suddenly – while doing something trivial – hear a loud [POP!].
Your muscles, your tendons need to be warmed up before training so that they can be readier for the weird positions and moves you’ll be getting them through training. And you need to stretch them after class so that you improve their recovery and your range of motion.
Don’t be lazy about these. Your Jiu Jitsu longevity depends on them.
STUPID WAY #4: GOING FOR FLYING WHATEVER
Flying techniques have their place in Jiu Jitsu, yes… But only after you’ve been training for a few years and have developed a rather sophisticated understanding for what your body is capable of doing – and for the situation you want to try the flying Armbar or whatever in.
Doing these without much experience and thought can leave you seriously injured. Go for some other technique.
STUPID WAY #5: GETTING YOUR TOES CAUGHT IN A BAGGY T-SHIRT
Finger and toe fractures are fairly common in BJJ, but what’s ludicrous about them is just how many happen due to the athlete’s extremities get caught in the other person’s clothing material.
If your training partner is wearing a baggy T-shirt, ask them politely to tuck it into their shorts; and then be careful when rolling with them. When you notice that your toes or fingers are getting stuck, pause the roll, remove the material, and restart.
Nothing is more sacred than your health, than staying healthy. Nope, not even tapping that new guy with the submission you saw on Youtube earlier today.