June 2010

Martial Arts Injuries - an Excuse to Quit.

One of the inevitable facts that you must face when training martial arts, particularly in the systems of Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Mixed Martial Arts, is that you will acquire injuries from time to time. These can range from simple bruises and cuts, strained muscles and connective tissue through to more serious bone breaks and tissue tears.

It is imperative that we learn how to handle these eventualities, when they occur, so that we manage them in a manner that will facilitate rapid and complete recovery. Often a short period of rest in order to give the injury a chance to heal is al that is required, however, for the more serious problems you must consult your health professional who can assess the injury more fully and provide a strategy for recovery.

It is during these times, when we are faced with an injury and a lay off from training, that some of us will be faced with a serious challenge to our motivation such that we will question our real purpose and need for training.

And it is at times such as these that I have seen several students drop out of training citing reasons ranging from an inability to train, all the way through to their doctor telling them that they would have to give up training all together.

In the majority of cases I have found that most of these students could have continued training by working around the injury or would have been capable of returning to training within a couple of weeks and the reasons for stopping training are merely excuses that raise serious questions as to their real motivation for training.

I have found that when I find myself in situations like this I need to ask myself: is what I am thinking a valid reason or just an excuse for opting out of something that I am no longer motivated to do?

Always remember it is important to be honest with yourself because if you continue through life continually making excuses for yourself, every time you get an opportunity to pull out of something that requires effort and focus, then this will seriously impair your ability to achieve anything worthwhile in life.

When considering the value of Martial Arts training consider how it has the capacity to equip us with so many valuable attributes, for achieving so many things in life, far beyond just the fighting and self defence aspects.

When I look around at my Black Belts and my fighters I see individuals who have suffered many injuries and critical challenges to their continuation of training. They all overcame these stumbling blocks and continued on to achieve their goals. These same people carry this attitude throughout their lives in every thing that they do and reap the successes that come with a positive self motivated frame of mind.

The ability to maintain focus and purpose so that you can overcome adversity and keep striving for a goal is a very valuable asset that will greatly enhance your life.

So don’t just accept the easy way out, question yourself then look at the facts and develop a way to work around any impairment to either compensate for it or wait until it is repaired.

Human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives”.

William James (1842 - 1910)

The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes of mind”.

William James (1842 - 1910)