1 Nov 2005

Medically speaking

Last night at BJJ class during end of session sparring, one lad had an epileptic seizure. At first no one knew what was going on as he lurched around the mat arms held infront and fitting uncontrollably. The man he was sparring with freaked out thinking something he did caused the seizure (he didn’t). He soon went to the ground aided by a couple of people and the seizure stopped, though he was some time coming round back to consciousness. The whole class stopped, some seemed to be quite shocked and shout out totally inappropriate advise – like throw a bottle of water over him (to revive him), or pinch his finger (to stop him choking on vomit????). Eddie, and a couple of us basically just sat with him to make sure his vital signs were still ok. He was still breathing, and his skin colour was normal so it seemed there was not much more to do other than wait. The one thing I should have kept track of but forgot was to measure his pulse. Finally he came to and looked a bit dazed and confused but otherwise ok. I am sure it was not his first seizure and he was naughty not to mention his medical condition to Eddie on his application form. But he seemed ok and was driven home. The incident brought home to me the thought that when training or teaching a class of twenty, thirty individuals, there is always a chance there will be someone with a serious medical condition. He/she may or may not disclose this information so it is up to the instructor and other around to be aware and react properly.

Dojo news – I’m hoping our entries to this year’s big JJ tournament at Southend will do well. Two of us, Ben and Aubrey will enter the sparring and I have high hopes as they are very able fighters. One thing I have been drilling with them is to work the shoot and clinch. This type of drill is fairly new to us, though of course it is as old as wrestling, but since I have been training BJJ and a little MMA, I see how important it is. In many ways, it has allowed me to see the light. In previous sparring tournaments, I would kick, and punch, and then rush in for a syllabus style throw. Always without success. It is not that the throw was wrong or my technique, it is the context. In sport JJ, syllabus throws are not effective. In self defence, gloves off and anything allowed, I believe they work as desgined. So, in sport, with good timing, an effective grappling style shoot and clinch should allow tori to throw or takedown the uke with ease. We’ll see if my methods allow Imperial another haul of medals this year.
Our hopes also rest on David, who is entering random attacks this year. As a brown belt, the stakes are raised yet again. Good luck to all our crew.
BTW Meerkat is not competing this year since mini-Meerkat may be born any time soon so I don’t want to risk missing the vital call!!

About the Author


Author & Artist

Meerkatsu is the artist name for BJJ black belt Seymour Yang.



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