How to Prevent Common Judo Injuries
Judo is a contact sport; consequently, injuries are fairly common, although serious injuries are rare. Some of the most common ways to avoid judo injuries are explored below:
Warm Up: The warm-up is the most important and significant way to reduce the likelihood of injury when participating in sports. A sufficient warm-up session should last at least 5-10 minutes, and involves gently stretching and exercising muscles to prepare them for the strenuous activity to follow. It is vital to start the warm-up slowly, and build up gradually to a more brisk and energetic pace.
Warming up in this way allows an increased flow of blood to reach the muscles, increasing the flexibility of the muscle fibers and significantly reducing the risk of pulling or straining a muscle. Ideal warm-up exercises include steady walking and jogging. These activities allow you to gradually increase the pace to further prepare your body for strenuous exercise.
When you have warmed up, you can undertake some gentle stretches to lengthen the muscles and tendons, further preventing injury. Pay particular attention to stretching those muscles which will be used during your exercise.
Do not over-reach yourself
It is extremely important, when taking part in judo classes, to listen to your body and know your physical limits. When you begin a new judo career, begin slowly and steadily to avoid pulling or straining muscles which your body may not be used to using or stretching. If you have not undertaken strenuous exercise for some time, it is especially important to build up your stamina and strength gradually to avoid injury. Over time, you will notice your fitness increase, and you will be able to undertake physical activity for longer periods of time.
Learn how to perform fall properly, and practice often with an instructor present to correct you. You should not be thrown until you can fall on the mat without pain 8 times out of 12. Work only with high ranks (brown and black belts) until your falls are proficient and you know at least a few throws. They will be well versed in working with beginners and will know how not to hurt you.
Choose partners wisely
If you find one of the Judoka from the club throws you way way too hard and never supports you when he throws, mention it to your Sensei and ask that you no longer work with that person and your Sensei should be able to accommodate you.
Also if that weird dude creeps you out, make sure you let your coach know so you don’t get partnered with them. But choose your partners carefully and if your opponent is suing way too much strength, let them know to loosen up and feel judo opposed to trying to Hulk smash you over for a score.