The Simplest Way to Avoid Injury

JJ Machado

Several years ago I found myself waiting for a Jean Jacques Machado seminar to start: I was sitting on the mat, watching people train, and chatting with a friend. Jean Jacques, the jiu-jitsu superstar, strolled over to us and told me something that I think about almost every time I train. What was this nugget of wisdom? He corrected my sitting technique!

You see, I’d been sitting and propping my weight up with my arm which was posted on the mat behind me. My arm was straight and my elbow locked out. Jean Jacques told me never to sit like that on the jiu-jitsu mat. He pointed out that if someone behind me, absorbed in their sparring, rolled onto my arm then my elbow would be shattered. BJJ is such a casual martial art that sitting sprawled out on the mat seems like a ‘normal’ thing to do, but it’s not the right thing to do and it’s not the safe thing to do. Keep your arms where you can see them, and not locked out

This may seem like a minor detail to get hung up on, but the readership of this newsletter is huge. If I share this tip here then someone, somewhere in the world, will avoid a severely damaging arm injury. One less injury is a good thing, justifying the inclusion of this story in my newsletter.

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