Back to the Mat!

After almost a month away, due to severe and unrelenting vertigo for awhile, followed by vacation, I’m excited to be back to training! Woo Hoo! I went to class Monday and Tuesday and will go Thursday and Friday with a firm commitment to keep prevailing. I’m rusty and slow, but I’m there and I’ll get back in shape soon. The vertigo isn’t completely gone but I’m convinced I can work with it, around it, or through it.

Question of the Day 11-15-2017

Question of the Day

Here’s a question for you:

What are your thoughts on BJJ tournaments? Do you compete? Why or why not?

My Answer: I totally respect anyone who steps up to compete at any level. I don’t plan on competing because I’m too concerned about injury. I watch the younger people at our gym go to tournaments and come home with bruised ribs, torn ACLs, and busted shoulders. It takes me too long just to recover from training to even think about competing.

I also know that if I were to enter a tournament, I would probably have to roll with a girl half my age and that’s already tough enough during our after-class Randori.

What are your thoughts on jiu jitsu competitions in general or on your competing personally? Let me know in the comments!

Vertigo… Again… Yikes

Vertigo: The World is Spinning
Vertigo: The World is Spinning

Déjà vu

I woke up this morning feeling a little “off”, but just attributed it to general fatigue from my strength workout yesterday. I should have known that the dreaded vertigo was back after feeling a bit dizzy at the gym. Actually, I was very dizzy, dropping to my knees when I stood up too quickly at one point. However, this morning I went immediately into denial and ignored it. You would think I would have known by now after the last time I experienced it. By the time I was supposed to leave for my jiu jitsu class, the spinning was intense and making me nauseous. I tried the Epley Maneuver to no avail this time. And I went back and forth on going to class until I realized that I wouldn’t be safe driving.

Missing Class

I had to text Coach and let him know I wouldn’t be there after all. I took a Meclizine tablet the doctor had prescribed last month and promptly fell asleep on the couch for 2 hours. Afterwards, I woke up feeling much better but very downcast that I missed class. I’m concerned that this is going to be an issue that keeps returning. It seems to have a will of its own. I’m determined to not let it stop me but work around it as best as I can. Ironic that my problem is dizziness when all I want to do is roll.

Determined to Prevail

With that in mind I’m hoping to make class tomorrow, and most especially Saturday for Adult Belt Promotion Day at the Academy! I don’t usually go on the weekend but a bunch of my friends are due for new belts. I want to be there to cheer for them! If I keep training regularly and improving, I hope to get my Blue Belt sometime next year, and would appreciate my friends’ support too.

Edit – I won’t be getting to class just yet, but will instead be making an appointment with an ENT to figure this out for good. Sigh…

Edit again – Even if I miss training, I won’t be idle. I have some plans that I’ll share in my next post. 🙂

Injuries in Jiu Jitsu

Injuries: Just Another Bruise
Just Another Bruise

Age = Injury?

I don’t know if my age makes me more susceptible to injuries or if getting injured is just part of any contact sport. I do know that it takes me more time to recover from injury than it used to. So a lot of my attention in live training is to minimize the risk. I freely admit to tapping really quickly before a submission is completed, and rolling more slowly than others.


One suggestion I’ve read about to avoid injuries is to be selective about who I roll with. Instead, I pretty much train with anyone who asks. I think it’s hard to judge how to roll with someone so different in physical attributes and overall goals, so I appreciate all my training partners. Since I’m not attending the women’s class in the evening, I rely on the guys who are all heavier and stronger than me to be my training partners. Kudos to anyone willing to work with me.

Minor Injuries

All that being said, I have experienced a few minor injuries since coming back, making it harder to train. Fortunately, each time I caught it early and they were never serious. I think my pain tolerance has increased also. Besides the expected bruises (of which I get more while training with the girls, ironically), I’ve tweaked one of my oblique muscles, strained my hamstring slightly, suffered a bout of vertigo, irritated my rotator cuff, and currently I’m working with a slightly strained back/hip muscle.


The vertigo, frankly was the most unnerving since I don’t know what caused it or how to prevent it in the future. It seems to have resolved itself after seeing the doctor and learning how to do the Epley Maneuver at home. But now I’m resting and rehabbing the low back strain and planning on continuing my strength workouts and classes. I decide on Randori during class. It’s hard to tell if something will loosen up with movement so I may go home early if needed. At least I try to get to class and drill the techniques.

Keep Going

All in all, none of these has been even close to making me want to quit. They have made me want to be more careful and pre-hab better. My goal is to defy time and the common sense that says I shouldn’t be doing this at my age. I will roll on and continue to enjoy my journey in jiu jitsu.