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#422987 - 10/18/09 02:14 PM Increased Injury, Decreased Flexibility!!
Leona Offline
Newbie

Registered: 01/22/06
Posts: 6
Loc: London, England
Hi All!

So, I'm 24 and I've been training for just under 5 years in Shotkan karate. Up til about 3 months ago I have been blessed with great flexibility and have gone though my karate life basically injury free (a bit of the usual knocks but nothing thats taken more than a few weeks to heal)

However, the last 3 months my flexibility has dropped a lot (Im struggling to touch my toes which as never been a problem before!) and I've been injury ridden now getting pain in my ankle, hip, elbow and neck/shoulder and lower back (!) I do take joint care suppliments once a day.

I am due for my shodan grading in march so I have stepped up my training a bit but not so much that I am overdoing it, certainly no more than I have previously, currently I am training 4 times a week in karate (average about 2 hours a session) swimming twice a week (I picked swimming as it is low impact) and playing squash once a week (not so low impact but good fun!)

So... after a long introduction, what I really wanted to ask was: is this drop in flexibility normal at my age or after doing ma's for 5 yeard? and has anybody got any good tips to combat it?! and really the same with the aches and pains?

Any help and advice would be hugely appreciated as I love training and I don't want injuries and the like getting in the way! Thanks!

Lxx

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#422997 - 10/18/09 05:34 PM Re: Increased Injury, Decreased Flexibility!! [Re: Leona]
MattJ Offline
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Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
Hi Leona. 24 seems a bit young to be incurring those injuries, but not unheard of in people that are very active, like yourself. The drop in flex is definitely not normal, though. I am 40, and still have most of my flex from when I started MA, 25 years ago.

I would hazard a guess that the squash may be aggravating something. Maybe take a week or two off from sqaush, and see what happens to start.
_________________________
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#423001 - 10/18/09 09:09 PM Re: Increased Injury, Decreased Flexibility!! [Re: MattJ]
Ogoun Offline
Member

Registered: 03/22/04
Posts: 96
Loc: Fort Myers, FL
Leona,
How much rest are you getting? You seem to be working 7 days a week. You may be overdoing it. You should take one day to rest. I would also advise you to consult a doctor to make sure the problem is not systemic.

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#423006 - 10/19/09 06:40 AM Re: Increased Injury, Decreased Flexibility!! [Re: Leona]
Cord Offline
Prolific

Registered: 01/13/05
Posts: 11399
Loc: Cambridge UK.
A drop in flexibility is unusual if you are devoting as much time as always to your flexibility via a good stretching routine. If you have recently devoted more time to aspects of training other than flexibility in an effort to up your game for your grading, then you will suffer from reducing your stretching regime - use it or lose it.

I also agree with Matt re. squash, its a terrible sport for tightening your calves and hamstrings, and also Ogoun that you are overtraining.

If you are getting 8 hours of karate a week, you really dont need the extra cardio from swimming, nor the stresses from squash.
Try dropping those activities, and replacing them with pure stretching sessions, or even yoga. Its what is known as 'active recovery', and will address your flexiblity and your overtraining issues in one fell swoop.

If that doesnt help within 3 weeks, then the problem could well be medical, and you will need to seek professional medical advice.
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