As the Physiotherapist for Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Smeaton Grange MMA team, as well as having practised numerous Martial arts myself (Muay Thai, BJJ, Wrestling) for over 8 years, I am very familiar with the common injuries that can take place on the mats or ring, and during competition.
Martial Arts training can be quite different compared to most other sports, both in terms of the training methods and the unique demands that are placed on the body. It is important that you see a physiotherapist who knows what is involved in your training to correctly diagnose and rehabilitate your injury, but also to also optimise your mobility and strength to minimise chance of recurrence, and improve your performance!
Have an Injury But Want to Keep Training?
One of the most common things I hear from Martial Artists coming off an injury is that they were told by their physiotherapist to completely stop training and just rest for X weeks, before starting training again. This should only rarely ever be the case! Unfortunately this is often the advice from a physiotherapist that probably doesn’t understand the sport fully and what’s involved in your training.
With my knowledge and experience in various Martial arts and the different training methods/positions/techniques used, we can often avoid a full rest period or break from training. There is nothing that kills momentum worse than a full shutdown of training for 6 weeks. Not only will you lose some physical qualities (strength, power, endurance, flexibility), but also the skills qualities (timing, precision, speed of execution) as well.
We can make recommendations that can keep you training, while not jeopardising your recovery/rehabilitation.
Have an Injury in the middle of a training camp for Competition/Fight?
If you have sustained an injury in a training camp for a competition/fight, we will first diagnose your injury, provide expected timelines for recovery, and coupled with an analysis of competition/fight schedule, give you realistic advice on your outlook for competing. We can then provide you with options to continue training around the injury so you can perform at your best on competition/fight day.
Strength and Conditioning for Martial Arts
As a qualified Strength and Conditioning Coach, we can help you prepare your body physically for the demands of your specific Martial Art – whether it be in: Mobility/Flexibility, Strength, Power, or Aerobic/Anaerobic endurance.
Each individual Martial Art has its own unique demands – we can Analyse your Martial Art’s physical demands, assess the areas in which you can improve, then develop goals and start sport-specific training to help you reach those goals.
What are the Top 3 Most common Martial Arts Injuries?
- Shoulder: Common to both Grappling and Striking-based Martial Arts, shoulder injuries can be of either a traumatic or non-traumatic (chronic) nature.
Because the shoulder (a loose ball and socket joint) is inherently unstable, many shoulder problems we see stem from stability issues (where the ball can shift too much in the socket). These can include:Traumatic: subluxations/dislocations from an acute mechanism e.g. kimura’s/americana’s (shoulder locks), or falling on an outstretched arm.
Americana shoulder lock: forced shoulder external rotation in abduction which stresses the anterior capsule/ligaments of the Glenohumeral jointChronic: Labral/cartilage or rotator cuff tears from repeated overloading of the shoulder e.g. punching with improper mechanics or poor rotator cuff control.
- Knee: Also common to both Grapplers and Strikers, knee injuries are also of either a traumatic or non-traumatic nature.
The knee essentially functions like a hinge joint, bending in mainly one direction (it does allow for a small amount of rotation). Because it is primarily uni-directional, the knee can be injured if it is subject to lateral/rotational forces. These injuries can include:Traumatic: ligament (ACL/PCL, etc) sprains from an acute force e.g. heel hook’s/kneebar’s (leg locks), or taking a leg kick to the outside of the knee.
Outside Heel hook: forced tibial internal rotation which stresses the knee ligaments (ACL, MCL, LCL, etc) and ankle ligaments (ATFL, PTFL, CFL)
Chronic: Meniscal/cartilage irritation from repeated impact forces e.g. knee hitting the mat during a takedown attempt.
- Elbow: A bit more common in Grapplers than Strikers, the elbow joint is prone to injury for essentially the same reasons as the knee. Because it is a hinge joint, it is prone to injury from lateral and hyper-extension forces. These injuries can include:Traumatic: Ligament (UCL, joint capsule) sprains e.g. armbar’s, or basing out on the arm.
Armbar: forced elbow hyperextension which stresses the anterior joint capsule and UCL.
Chronic: Tendinitis/tendinopathies (tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow) from repeated over use e.g. gripping of gi’s/kimono’s.
If you are looking for top quality assessment and treatment of your Martial Arts Injury then click the ‘book now’ button for Kevin. Kevin will be able to help you decide what path to take and provide you the high quality assessment and treatment that you need.Book an Appointment with Kevin Now