Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Who Has Two Thumbs and Is Injured Again?

Well, I'm injured again.

I know, dude. I feel the same way.

Fortunately, it's not the "have to go to a doctor, get a lot of drugs and physical therapy, or gawd forbid surgery" kind of injury.  It's not as problematic as when I got my fingers jammed last year, or when I tore a calf muscle.

It's the "very minor, take an anti-inflammatory, and keep training because it's not like you're INJURED-injured" kind of injury.  You feel a little stupid if you complain about it because it's so minor.

You see, I've strained both thumbs. 

I had a minor strain in the right one a few weeks ago.  It was annoying but not too bad, until I went to kobudo class and hit a BOB with the bo.  After a few strikes, my grip in my right hand gave, and to not lose the weapon, I strained my LEFT thumb maintaining control of it.

I finished class (heck, even worked on sai, which is a little hard on the wrist and thumbs) and it didn't feel great that day, but the next morning, both thumbs were throbbing with pain.  I took it easy a few days, but I had to teach class, and I'm working on a jo form for a tournament coming up, and it's not like I can NOT stick spar in those classes, can I?

Of course not.

As a result, both thumbs keep getting re-strained and I spend periods of time with my hands wrapped in ice packs.

That's always a dilemma for us, isn't it?  How to deal with minor injuries like strains and bruises and whatnot.  The "smart" thing to do would be to stop doing anything that taxes my thumbs and let it heal.  I wouldn't swing a stick and I wouldn't practice with my kobudo weapons.

Heh, yeah.  That's gonna happen.

Sure, I've reduced my activity as much as I can.  I've worked drills and techniques that don't require me to manipulate weapons when it's feasible to do so.

But it's not like I'm not going to skip that four-hour Arnis seminar we hosted over the weekend.  Or that I won't practice - and I must with the weapon sometimes - for that tournament coming up in a few weeks.  Or that I'll skip that Eku seminar this coming weekend that only comes up once in a blue moon.  And I can't not practice sai - I'm not good at it, I don't like it much, but I must master it for my class.

It doesn't help that I'm middle aged, and it takes me longer to heal than it might have if I were younger.

That's the way it goes, when you do what we do.

So tell me how you cope with those little annoying injuries you pick up when you train. Do you train right through it, accepting it will take longer to heal?  Or do you take a break like smart people might?  Let me know in the comments!