All sports, especially a contact sport or martial arts class, carry some risk of injury. This risk and the extend of any injuries can be reduced with some good safety habits.
- Do warm up exercises. This increases circulation, gets oxygen into your system, loosens muscles and tendons.
- Do stretching exercises every day, not just in the Taekwondo or martial arts class. This is especially important for adults who have to work to retain their flexibility.
- Drink water to keep hydrated. Dehydration will cause poor thinking, low blood pressure and rapid heart rate.
- Mouthguards are highly recommended.
- Let your instructor know if you have any condition like asthma.
- Avoid horseplay or ‘mucking about’. More injuries are caused by this that anything done while training.
- Seek medical advice if there is any injury, even if it seem mild.
- Do not practice if you suffer any injury
Self Defence emphasises techniques to avoid injury. This mostly means avoiding injury from the attacker, but also how to disarm an opponent without causing serious damage.
Martial arts classes should limit the techniques practices by children, and only match sparing partners of similar ability. The attaching individual should only use martial arts techniques that the defending individual has been taught to parry. Instruct children not to step outside of these parameters. Explain that the other person is not ready for the advance moves, and neither are they.