As far as exciting (and useful) sports go, martial arts are gaining in popularity. From Tai Kwon Do to Jujitsu, young and old are enjoying the strength, discipline, coordination and flexibility training that they offer. However, a factor that we need to be aware of is the injuries that come along with the fun. As with any sport – especially high impact sports – martial arts sports injuries are common, but many are preventable.
Common Martial Arts Sports Injuries
Injuries vary depending on the martial art of choice; some are non-contact sports and most have some form of protective gear. However, injuries are inevitable and range from bumps and bruises to concussions and broken bones.
A kick to the face is never going to end well and we see injuries such as broken noses, fractured jaws or skulls and broken teeth.
Head and Neck Injuries
A blow to the head, choking techniques or a heavy fall can result in a concussion, loss of consciousness, problems with balance and vision, as well as neck injuries.
Joints and Extremities
Some of the longer lasting martial arts sports injuries come from dislocation, tears or fractures to the knee, ankle, shoulder and elbow. Fingers and toes are also at risk during grappling.
Prepare Properly to Avoid Injury
Martial arts are well suited to most age groups and can be practised with relative safety. However, preparation and planning are a necessity in preventing sports-related injuries. Consider the following:
- Maintain a good level of fitness. Irregular spurts of high impact or vigorous training are likely to result in long-term damage.
- Listen to your coach. Warming up, cooling down and exercising proper technique is essential in any sport.
- Maintain a healthy diet. Drinking plenty of water and a diet rich in essential vitamins and minerals keeps you at your optimum level of health.
- Always use protective clothing. Whatever your martial art of choice, ensure that you always wear well-fitting protective gear.
- Talk to your doctor. If you have experienced a martial arts related sports injury, talk to your doctor. A qualified sports medicine physician is a good place to start when trying to establish the damage and when you can safely return to the ring.
As with any sporting injury, proper diagnosis and full recovery is the only way to ensure a future in your martial art of choice.
Chat with our qualified sports medicine physician today for assistance.