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#416518 - 02/26/09 11:34 PM Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice
journeyoflife Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 8
First, let me start by saying that this is my first post ever on FA.com. I've been an off-and-on lurker and I really enjoy coming back to this site for articles, tips, insights, etc.

A lot of you guys really know your stuff. For this reason, I'm coming here to ask a serious question regarding Krav Maga.

I want to start KM training this summer. I've never taken KM before but I have been trained in other martial arts over the years (starting in my early 20's). I'm turning 37-years old this month (yes, getting old...lol). I am athletically built. Each week, I practice cardio, weight lifting, yoga, and speed/heavy bag martial arts drills and whatnot. In the warmer New York months, I do a lot of outdoor workouts. I have partners I exercise and practice with. They are martial artists but not trained in KM. I really work hard because I LOVE it. Things are good.

Still, I have a dilemma. My dilemma is that in 2005, I shattered my left elbow while sparring. It was put back together surgically and docs did a fantastic job. I do have some metal parts in that elbow now. The injury took me out of practice altogether for about 8-months. For the last couple years or so, I eased into strength training and other activities again, pushing myself and gradually challenging myself a little more as time passed. Today, my arm is good enough for me to do all the working out that I have come to at this point. I do have a couple slight limitations in movement but nothing really troubling. My biggest issue with my left arm is that it has a little less power and speed to it than my right. I work on this as best I can to improve.

Since the injury, though, what I HAVE NOT YET done is sparred with any opponent. Believe me, I WANT TO. If I were forced to, on the street, I would get things done without thinking twice. However, I have a little concern inside me for getting on the mat against someone I'm training with and just going at it. I know my left arm has healed probably as best as it can, but...

My question to any of you folks that are long-time students OR instructors in KM is this: Could and SHOULD I get into KM even with such an injury in my history?

I believe I'm tough enough to handle (or adapt to) whatever the classes throw at me. But something inside me is making me want to seek out real advice from folks like you that know the practice. I'm all ears (or eyes...well, ya know what I mean...lol).

Thanks!

~Christian

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#416519 - 02/27/09 12:52 AM Re: Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice [Re: journeyoflife]
karl314285 Offline
Member

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 326
Loc: The Matrix, Serif is Teacher
I have some inkling of things medical...NOT an MD tho,ok.

**Your Surgeon would totally deny you** BUT...

I'm old fart with C-Spine fusion and titanium 2.5 years released told never to fight and (proving there is no end to my stupidity), in the past year i fell out of a tree (thankfully wooden pointy chair broke my fall), broken two ribs "sparring" , five stitches rt hairline, and currently the shoulda been stiched scar 'tween my eyebrows is still closing (thankfully girlfriend made sure I stayed awake cause when I started vomiting I proved my medical insight a-gain, concussion, shoulda gone to hospital but we health care types make the worst patients...

SO DONT BE A FOO LIKE ME, Talk to your Physician and the Surgeon...THERE IS A WIDE WORLD of other MA to practice and you want your arm dont you??? Time to move on to another MA, BEING TOUGH WONT CONVINCE YOUR ARM OF ANYTHING, I admit I am a stubborn moron to continue fighting and I hate to mention it but THE OLDER YOU GET THE SLOWER YOU HEAL

Karl-Poster Boy for what NOT to do after surgical repair:)
Also winner of MA Darwin Award-Recognized until 2025 or death by misadventure

But the above is just my addlepated opinion, I'm willing to accept anyone's encouragement that I'm sound and rational if not outright brilliant considering all the above
_________________________
do not try to spork the post, for that is impossible, only realize there is no post to spork

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#416520 - 02/27/09 04:13 PM Re: Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice [Re: karl314285]
journeyoflife Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 8
Karl,

Thanks for your input. You're definitely correct that my doctor would deny me. He has questioned whether I "have to" get into KM. Of course, I don't "have to" from the point of view of life necessity or anything. He encourages me to stay fit and says that as long as I'm fine at what I do already, I should keep at it but that I shouldn't push too far beyond that. He's pretty much saying what you said, "You want your arm don't you?"

However, I have a drive to challenge myself. Obviously, I don't want to end up crippled, but KM appeals to me because of the practical street-level scenarios it covers. Before my injury, I had an ex-military/Jeet Kune Do instructor that used to train me in scenarios like fighting on stairways, between parked cars, multiple opponents backing you into a corner, etc. I think that's why I want to get into KM so much. The practical, real-life, on-the-street situations are what I like.

You made a good point that the older you get the slower you heal. I hadn't thought of it that way. At the same time, I can tell by your post that you know how it feels to have that "moronic" type of drive that says to keep pushing. I have a hard time telling myself "No" when it comes to wanting to sign up for KM. On the other hand, I don't want to be stupid.

Are you an instructor? Or are there any instructors here that could throw me an opinion here?

After reading your post, Karl, I can be grateful that I haven't needed MORE surgeries than I have in my life so far from MA. lol Stay healthy, man!

~C

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#416521 - 02/27/09 05:36 PM Re: Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice [Re: journeyoflife]
karl314285 Offline
Member

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 326
Loc: The Matrix, Serif is Teacher
Journeyoflife,
thanks for the reply, I often feel my posts go unread or passed over. I began teaching kids class as assistant starting at greenbelt in Cuong Nhu and was actively an Instructor after Blackbelt and then Shodan (we separate the two in our style by up to 2 yrs and another testing) and continued to teach while student of Oshima Sensei in Aikido. I also taught Anatomy and Physiology, Nuclear Medicine and some ancillary allied Health Care classes at the community college level. I have my druthers to be a student after teaching for so long. Do wish I could pass on what I've learned over most of my life...but...long story.

I DO know how you feel so I donate my stupidity openly for all so YOU can make more informed choices than I (Tendon repair of the hand and wrist is a b!@&%*, but Im alive).

I think my main point is that while you love and are good at KM, that is not your identity, you may lose several "identities" over a life, none are you...find a style you can change to that you will then grow to love, there is so much out there to learn.

I still have yet to reach the time I will regret all the blunt skull and bodily trauma (I cant surf anymore, major drag dude). Like a chameleon, change to live. My life is simply a warning yadayadayada...

as an aside find out what other instructors are near you. Tai Chi w/ Qi gong is a good complement to you knowledge base and will occupy the rest of your natural life

Be safe, i'll see the dirt nap before you:) hopefully others here can advise you of options I have not.
_________________________
do not try to spork the post, for that is impossible, only realize there is no post to spork

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#416522 - 02/27/09 10:21 PM Re: Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice [Re: karl314285]
journeyoflife Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 8
Quote:


I think my main point is that while you love and are good at KM, that is not your identity, you may lose several "identities" over a life, none are you...find a style you can change to that you will then grow to love, there is so much out there to learn.




Thanks. To be clear, I've never trained in KM. That's my dilemma. I'd like to start training in KM this summer. I'll say, though, that I have been thinking about the whole "keep my arm" thing. lol I'd hate to NOT take on the challenge of KM training, though, just BECAUSE OF my reconstructed elbow. To me, that really sucks.

You're absolutely right about the variety of other MA forms out there. I started out in my early 20's studying Tae Kwon Do under my father's instructor (as well as under my father--a lifelong student of TKD). My father is 60 now and he's in better shape than many guys my age.

I moved on to later study with some ex-military guys who gave me a few years of private lessons on all sorts of street fighting, self-defense, and outdoor survival. After that I went got into American Kenpo. Then I got into Jeet Kune Do, but my JKD training was cut very short by my elbow shattering. From that point on, I refer you back to my original post here.

Qigong...excellent. I've worked in that direction off and on over the years. Mostly, it's just about meditation to me. Hell, that's probably what I need...my ego to be tamed. That is certainly something to consider.

Thank you for your input, kind sir.

~C

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#416523 - 02/28/09 10:55 AM Re: Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice [Re: journeyoflife]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!
Prolific

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
C -

Go ahead and try it if you want. Just be sure to let the instructor, and anyone you are working with, know what the deal is. Good luck.
_________________________
"In case you ever wondered what it's like to be knocked out, it's like waking up from a nightmare only to discover it wasn't a dream." -Forrest Griffin

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#416524 - 02/28/09 02:23 PM Re: Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice [Re: MattJ]
JasonM Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 03/17/05
Posts: 2502
I agree with Matt.

I can also say is that you probably won't be sparring until level 2 anyway. You can remain at level 1 for 6 months to a year depending on the instructor/school.

Then in that year you should havea pretty good feel for your classmates, instructor and how your elbow will hold up.

Give it a shot and tell the instructor about your elbow.

J
_________________________
90 percent of good abs is your nutrition

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#416525 - 03/04/09 06:14 PM Re: Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice [Re: JasonM]
journeyoflife Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 8
Matt and Jason, thanks for the input. If level 1 doesn't involve sparring, that might work for me. If nothing else, that gives me the time to see if Krav is really for me in general.

~C

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#416526 - 03/07/09 10:06 AM Re: Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice [Re: journeyoflife]
Dedicated1 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/27/05
Posts: 399
Loc: Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
I have a student with a steel plate in his foot, and one with steel plates in his wrist. As long as everyone knows your situation you can work around it. I wouldn't let that stop you from your goals. But like I said, you and the the Instructor must always be aware of potential risks and make sure you prepare for them or avoid them all together.
_________________________
If your in a "Fair Fight", your tactics suck.

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#416527 - 03/07/09 05:49 PM Re: Once injured martial artist looking for KM advice [Re: Dedicated1]
journeyoflife Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 8
Quote:

I have a student with a steel plate in his foot, and one with steel plates in his wrist. As long as everyone knows your situation you can work around it. I wouldn't let that stop you from your goals. But like I said, you and the the Instructor must always be aware of potential risks and make sure you prepare for them or avoid them all together.




Wow, your student sounds impressive. Hearing this kind of situation from a KM instructor definitely encourages me.

I'm glad that I started this thread. You guys have been quite helpful so far. I've decided to go ahead and sign up for KM this summer.

Now that I'm convinced (with help from you guys) that steel in my elbow wouldn't necessarily preclude me from training in KM, I figure that the worst case scenario would be that I get in, give it a few months, and find the art itself is not for me. I won't know how it goes until I do it. Hell, I'd already be in KM training if not for my elbow. If I had never had this injury, I would be jumping into KM with both feet pretty much the way I've jumped into every other type of training I've had in my life.

As you guys have pointed out, though, as long as the instructors and students know my situation, it can be worked with. I plan to keep my doctor informed of what I'm doing as well. While I may be excited, I'm also not self-destructive. If I find my elbow won't hold up to standards or to my own satisfaction during KM training, then I'll stop.

Of course, I'll be letting them know that I don't want to be handled with kid gloves either. lol When I sign up, I sign up. I'm there for whatever ya throw at me. lol I'm sure that can all be balanced fairly.

Anyway, I'm of the mindset that, generally, anything can be worked around. I feel like I have to give it a shot and see how far I can take it. Thanks, guys, for your perspectives and tips. I'm sure you'll see more of me around here.

~C


Edited by journeyoflife (03/07/09 06:02 PM)

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