We were doing Stage 4 of the punch block series. Basically, you just transition your feet to your opponents hips to keep distance. My training partner wound up his legs on the transition, he was about to cold kick me on the hips or stomach. Lucky for me, I read his movements and intercepted the two kicks and flattened him down. We had to speak about what we were doing afterword. An inexperienced training partner would have probably gotten hurt with what he was doing.
When I first started training Brazilian Jujitsu, I didn’t like to tap (still don’t, but I do, a lot). Also, I never shied away or avoided a fight. If someone wanted to roll, we’d roll. If someone turned up the heat to 100%, then I would match that and raise them to 110%. You feeling froggy? Then leap! Let’s go. Ego was (and still is but to a lesser degree) a huge factor in this type of behavior for me. I refused to show weakness, fear, or that I was hurt.
In hindsight, this was really stupid.
As I live my life now in perpetual pain due to the many bjj injuries that I’ve sustained over the years, combined with the wear and tear of aging, along with a very active lifestyle, I wish that I was a bit more selective about who I trained with and less reluctant to check people who were being too reckless. At the end of the day, if you tolerate it, you get hurt and gain nothing from this.
These days, if I find a training partner is being a little overzealous, hurting me, or putting me at risk for injury, I speak up right away. I don’t speak aggressively, but I’ll say, “Hey man, we are just drilling, there is no need to go so hard.”
Mind you, I can get a little bit carried away myself at times, but I have never hurt or put any of my training partners in danger. On the other hand, I have been hurt many times because of irresponsible training partners.
Please note, it’s not always the white belts by the way. I’ve been hurt by ranks all the way from white belt up to a high level brown belt. One of my worst injuries came from a horrible armbar that popped my shoulder and that was at the hands of a brown belt.
Injuries happen in this art, it is a physical martial art after all. However, many of them are avoidable if you communicate with your training partners when they are wilding out. Don’t think of it as complaining or showing weakness, think of it as preserving your body for the long run, otherwise, it will break!
Just a life long New Yorker sharing the journey through my lens. Please take note of a post’s date. The views I express here are subject to change and evolving as I grow and learn.