Well, the Stick Chick is here to help you out. Just call me your personal martial arts-related Santa's Little Helper.
GOOD MUSCLE RUBS
Doing what we do, we get muscle aches and strains on a regular basis. So you could look into getting some Dit Da Jow (My friend Dale Dugas makes it and ships worldwide - and he makes other herbal remedies as well, so check out his store HERE). You might find Tiger Balm in your local store (many martial artists I know swear by it), and there's new muscle rubs with lidocaine that also work well.
There's two kinds of tape that are generally helpful.
For all martial artists, regular ol' medical tape (like THIS) comes in handy to help bind up minor wounds, to tape together hurt fingers (especially for our grappling friends), and the like. These rolls come in various sizes, so get a variety pack.
For Arnis/Escrima/Kali players, we use tape - electrical, hockey, and duct tape - to repair our sticks. A few rolls is always appreciated (and in a pinch, if we run out of medical tape... we have extra!).
|And if the babysitter falls through when it's time to go to that seminar... (image found HERE)|
GI WASHING KIT
This is especially helpful with white gis. Put together a bag of white vinegar and baking soda, and if you can find some, Oxiclean (if it's available where you live. If not, here's a suggestion on how to make a homemade version).
I don't wear a white gi on a regular basis, but I need this stuff for my red and black gis as well, so most of us will appreciate a gi washing kit!
That image above is a joke, but I've been tempted at times, lemme tell ya. There's been times we wanted to go to a seminar - Mr. Chick and I together - but we couldn't because we just couldn't find a babysitter at at reasonable price (and it is not feasible to take a little one with you to these things, trust me). This is especially true if it was an out-of-town seminar. So either just one goes, or we have to skip it.
If you want to help out that martial arts couple in your life - giving them the gift of taking the kids for the day, or for the weekend, would be a HUGE gift indeed.
HEALTHY SNACKS EMERGENCY KIT
Sometimes you get to training, and you get so busy, you just don't have the time/energy to get something to eat. So you could put together an "emergency kit" of snacks - packs of nuts, dried fruit that keeps, beef jerkey etc (you know your martial artist and what they like), put them in a nice compact kit, and wrap that baby for Christmas day (hey, make several!).
Believe me, having healthy snacks on hand helps us avoid making eating decisions we might... regret... later.
Hope that list helps, and I'll be waiting for my packs of tape to arrive in the mail from all of you... right?
What other ideas for gift giving to martial artists on the cheap can YOU think of? Let us know in the comments!