Are you training ‘through a pain’ and not sure if that is the right thing to do?
Here are some tips to avoid injury and keep you fighting fit! Prevention is always better than cure. Follow these tips to feel great and more importantly keep top Ninja status!

Tip One: Know your body
We are all different, remember this! Martial Arts can be punishing. If we are not used to and adapted to this stress then we run a much greater risk of injury. Knowing which muscles are tight, which areas are taking the strain, what are our weaknesses and strengths are all important. If we can tune in to how our bodies are reacting to the training then perhaps we can implement strategies to prevent an injury before it occurs. Just because your friend can do a kick easily, doesn’t mean your body is the same.
Tip Two: Sports massage
Competitive sports people use sports massage at least once per month; some even daily when in heavy training. Most normal folks only use sports massage when they get injured or when they get a niggle – when it’s usually already too late! The main things are that it can prevent an injury before it occurs by identifying it and releasing tension and tightness.
Tip Three: The benefit of Cross Training
Cross training means using other forms of exercise to help support and improve your Martial Arts. You still get the benefits of exercise, working the heart and lungs but at the same time give the other parts of the body a rest from the strain of your favourite ECKA class! This is particularly useful if you have a niggle which threatens to become a full-blown injury and prevent you from doing anything.
Tip Four: Don’t over train
Learn to train by feel rather than beat yourself up if you have missed a session. There is a risk of becoming obsessive or compulsive about our training and over training can lead to serious injury or burnout. Keep a clear focus and objective to your training – if you feel tired – rest. Ache is OK, pain is not. Quality of training sessions is more important than quantity of mediocre ones.
Tip Five: Injury prevention exercises
Injury prevention can be boosted by some specific exercises. These can be specific to you and any weaknesses or just general strength and conditioning. This might include core strength exercises or my favourite Yoga. See my other blog on this page for Yoga and Martial Arts.
Sensei Jo