Physio for Jiu-Jitsu: Avoiding and Treating Injuries

If you're looking to get into Brazilian jiu-jitsu then you'll be getting into a sport which requires a lot of discipline and effort but which gives a lot in return. Unfortunately, like with every combat sport, you run the risk of an injury, and trips to the physio to massage out tight muscles and realign the spine are not uncommon. With careful preparation before each session, you can really minimise your risk of injury, and if you do find yourself at the physio there are many things you can do to supplement your recovery. 

Warm Up 

Before training, you'll want to warm up your muscles. This will help you to loosen the muscles that are being treated during your physio sessions, but also allow a greater range of movement to prevent muscle tears and strains during your training. Ideally, you'll want to do a range of dynamic stretches, such as lunges, squats and moving toe touches, increasing the range of movement with each repetition. You can even do some light cardio before this, such as jogging on the mat in order to warm your muscles and increase flexibility. After you have done these two components, work on mobilising the joints by swinging the arms and lifting the knees up before rotating 90 degrees away from the centre of the body to loosen the hip flexors. Finally, finish up with some jiu-jitsu drills to specifically target the muscles about to be used. Doing this routine before training will increase your overall flexibility and flood your joint with synovial fluid, which lubricates the joints and prevents inflammation. This will allow an injured individual to participate at a limited capacity and a healthy individual to take part with an increase in performance.

Roll It Out

When you finish your session you could focus on some foam rolling. This will imitate the physio massage and works as a great supplement between sessions. A foam roller is a thick foam tube that is placed on the floor. You then lie on it and roll your body over it, using varying degrees of pressure to massage the muscles. This can help to break down scar tissue and increase flexibility between sessions. The great thing about foam rollers is that they are cheap and easy to carry, and whilst they don't replace a good sports massage, they are perfect to use in between sessions.

Make sure to work closely with your physio to learn more about what you can do to prevent sports injuries and recover from them more quickly.