We all get injured in life, it’s a simple fact. Some of us are injured more often than others, and some heal faster. I’ve been quite fortunate in my time alive to avoid major injuries, but 2012 gave me a run for my money. Truthfully it started at the end of November 2011.
-November 2011: There’s a First time for Everything.
I attended and participated in the West Coast Combat Championships in Richmond, competing the Gi and No-Gi divisions. Or so I had planned. Less than two minutes into my second match, I stuffed my opponent’s bump sweep and fractured my finger between the mat and his back. I would go on to win the match via rear-naked choke, and then off to the hospital.
-May 2012: Cartilage ain’t worth a damn.
Monday nights at the gym are sparring nights. We strap on our gear and start practicing what we’ve learned. I sparred a South-paw – Mark de Souza – who came at me with an overhand left while I was trying to feed him uppercuts. It caught me square on the nose and instantly bled. On Wednesday I would be rolling No-Gi with Coach Christiaan and he would jokingly punch me lightly in the nose. I heard the worse crunching sound as I lost most of the connection between bone and cartilage.
After weeks of searching, I would finally find a clinic willing and able to cauterize my nose, but only after being prescribed a cortisone spray (side effects which included causing the nose to bleed … what?!)
-June 2012: My Tough Mudder is tougher and muddier than your Tough Mudder.
If you haven’t heard of Tough Mudder, it’s an international long-distance obstacle course/run that promotes being a team rather than individual accomplishments and time. We assembled a team from the gym and attended our local event in Whistler.
Our first obstacle – not counting the six-foot wall we scaled where Christiaan took a boot to his mouth – was a plunge into freezing waters with giant ice chunks, and dyed green, pink, purple or yellow. You had to submerge to make it to the other side. On my way to the surface, I apparently collided with a giant ice cube. After pulling the rest of the team out of the water, I shook the water out of my short hair and noticed that some red was coming with it. Our frozen tub was green.
-July 2012: That thingy actually has a name. Process, Xihpoid Process.
This one mixed things up a bit: I didn’t bleed! Instead, with a quick 5-minute sparring round against a heavyweight, I took a great shot to my sternum. It winded me a bit, but given where he hit, I didn’t think anything of it. Later as I loaded my gear into my car, I realized it still hurt, and was quite tender at that little nub of cartilage that hangs there. The only way too heal it was to take it easy for a couple of weeks.
-October 2012: Red red … it rhymes with “wine”
During another sparring session, I pushed some physical boundaries, trying to work my aggressiveness and ring control. At some point I took a roundhouse kick to the left side of my body. Didn’t think anything of it at the time, I just reacted and fired off a few shots of my own. When I got home, I went to the bathroom and received quite a shock at the colour. You ever drain the fluid out of a can of kidney beans? Well, it was like that but not as thick.
Funny that I should mention kidney beans, it was my kidney that was damaged from the kick.
-November 2012: In retrospect, that’s a bad way to stall.
I participated in CBJJF’s BC Open II, and should have been able to fight my way to at least a Silver, but in the last 90 seconds of my second match, I tried running out the clock by preventing a take-down. Big mistake against my opponent who had a number of years of wrestling under his belt. He managed a HUGE take-down and tried his best at crushing my forearm with his shoulder. Short story even shorter, he managed to put my right arm virtually out of action without breaking anything. He did feel bad when he saw me in the sling, but I told him it was my fault for trying to keep our match standing to ride it out.
-December 2012: I dislike cauliflower, understand?
I won’t post a picture of what it looked like before it hardened, because it looked pretty bad, even to someone used to seeing it. I had the unfortunate luck of getting my right ear crushed while trying to escape a submission. Over the course of three drainings, I had over 9CC’s of fluid removed and spent two weeks with a gauze-stuffed ear and a tensor-bandage wrapped head. My ear still isn’t so pretty, but it’s not bulging like it’s about to explode and give birth to an alien.
There are my major injuries to date, not including multiple paintball injuries and other minor everyday stuff. If I included that, we’d be here until the internet shut down.
–Kiyoshi “The Prototype”
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