After one of my matches at a Jiu-Jitsu tournament, I noticed that my opponent had long fingernails, which surprised (and scared) me a little bit. I was glad I didn’t get scratched, or get an eye poked out! I figured no long nails in Jiu-Jitsu was a given, but that incident made me want to start checking my competitor’s hands before our matches. Besides the safety factor, I can’t imagine that long nails would be very beneficial to gripping.
For about twenty years before I started at the dojo, I always had long fingernails. My nails are very strong, and they grow fast. People usually thought they were fake, and I was pretty proud that they weren’t. I used to love to paint them all crazy (okay, I still love to do that).
Then at my very first Karate class, I discovered that I could not make a proper fist without gouging myself in the palm. So as soon as I got home that night, I cut them to the quick, and I never looked back. I missed them a little bit at first; because I would use them as tools, and the tips of my fingers were sensitive from never being exposed; but I got used to it.
Now that I’ve had a broken wrist for the past month, I haven’t been able to (nor really had the need to) keep my nails trimmed. Therefore, for the first time in about six and a half years, I have long fingernails again. They aren’t even close to as long as they used to be, but I already hate them! They’re so annoying, they just get in the way! Why in the world did I ever think they were cool?
I can still make a fist without drawing blood, so I suppose they are acceptable for now. Since I’m only able to use one arm at the moment, I figure they might be good weapons to hold onto for the time being, but as soon as I have access to my right arm again, they got to go!