flipperFor the past couple of weeks in Jiu-Jitsu training, I haven’t had any problems with drilling, but I’ve been having a difficult time adjusting to rolling with a thumb injury, and despite my best intentions, I’ve continued to try to grab with it (which usually ends painfully for me, and slows down the healing process), so during sparring in the advanced class last night, Professor Greg recommended that I tape my entire hand into a “flipper” (I’m not a shark, I’m a freaking dolphin!), so that I wouldn’t be able to use it. The taping was effective for that purpose, but I guess I didn’t realize just how important gripping is to me (even with my non-dominant hand), so I felt kind of worthless during rolling, and I was annoyed about it at first, but then I started to see it more of a challenge, and a chance to work on my problem-solving skills.

My partner for class was Jordan, who is also returning from an injury (and I’m really glad to see him back!), and for the final roll of the night, Greg paired us together and said we should just drill, since we’re both still recovering, but Jordan and I agreed that we felt safe rolling with each other, so we decided to go light (or more accurately, smart). Then at one point Greg looked over and asked “Are you guys drilling or rolling?”, and I felt bad that we had disobeyed The Professor, but he didn’t seem mad about it, and since neither Jordan nor I got hurt, I think the roll was beneficial for both of us, as we’re still trying to knock the rust off.

I believe this minor injury might actually end up being good for me in the long run, because it’s been forcing me to think more about what I’m doing, and to approach things differently. If I can figure out how to survive with “one hand tied behind my back”, then I should be a better grappler after my thumb heals!


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