Your hygiene on and off the mats!
Okay so it is a touchy subject, but we still need to say it because there are people out there who aren’t aware of how important hygiene is when you’re training in martial arts. Not only to you, but to your training partners also! Poor hygiene can cause some rather irritating problems for you, your training partners and even gym owners. From skin infections, impetigo ringworm and staph infections, these are all the direct result of poor hygiene and ultimately end up causing individuals to take time off of the mats and stop training until the problems are resolved. Sometimes this can take weeks! Below we will talk about the things to avoid when trying to keep on top of hygiene and away from nasty infections! If you own a gym, feel free to share this post with your members! Bad breath Bad breath is not something you or your training partners will enjoy on the mats , it's just not pleasant! Here's a couple of causes of bad breath so you can keep on top of it. It can be caused by a few things, your dental habits! (obviously) keep on top of that, Your diet! (this is a big one) I find even with great dental habits I can still have a problem with my breath if I have a bad diet! Lastly, sickness will cause bad breath , infections etc.. be a good partner, if you think you've got bad breath keep some mouthwash or toothbrush in your training bag! Sickness Okay, most new people to this world who start to train hard don't seem to realise how much of a problem this is but if you're sick and have infections you are going to spread it to everyone on the mat. With so much physical contact and sweat this is bound to happen. Plus if people think you are sick they wont want to train with you, they may not say it but they're not comfortable! This is an easy one, STAY OFF THE MATS. A Wet/Damp or Sweaty Kimono/ Gi Okay so, two problems here but they're closely related so I am keeping them together!! Worst first! Sweaty Kimono/Gi, this is a cardinal sin please NEVER DO THIS. Never step onto the mats with an unwashed kimono, if you train in it you clean it. First up, nobody wants to go near you if your kimono stinks and is covered in sweat stains. Secondly, YOU WILL CAUSE INFECTIONS ON THE MAT!! We will talk about this more in a second! Next up a wet/damp kimono, honestly its just as bad the only difference is you don't smell, I know what you're thinking!! "ITS GOING TO GET WET AND COVERED IN SWEAT ANYWAY!". Don't do this. Let it dry out properly. Listen we know you're committed to training and don't want to miss a session but you gotta keep your training gear clean and dry! Nails and open cuts Okay so long nails is the worst in jiu jitsu! You'll be collecting unwanted stuff under there all day before training and then you're going to tear chunks out of everyone and leave them with lots of little cuts. That might not seem bad but your leaving them open to some bad infections that we talk about in a minute! Do everyone a favor and keep them trimmed!! FINGERS AND TOES!! If you have any open cuts, cover them up. You're going to both spread and catch infections more easily and nobody wants that! Sandels off mats A general rule is to never go barefooted in any gym on any surface that is not matted! ESPECIALLY WHEN GOING TO THE BATHROOMS!!! You will walk in all kinds of things that do not belong on the mats that everyone is training on. 99% of gyms try to keep the mats clean and free from infections, so be sure to help them keep it that way. Skin Infections! EDUCATE YOURSELF!! Look out for signs of infections, check google and familiarise yourself with symptoms and appearance of some common skin conditions. - Impetigo - Ring worm - staph infections - the list goes on... It is incredibly important that if you spot any signs of these that you DO NOT keep training, stop immediately and start treatment for the infection from the start. Trust me your better off safe than sorry. These infections can be a real problem to get rid of and it is a nightmare once they make their way into gyms, infections get passed around quickly through sweat and skin contact. Especially easily if there are any open cuts from a particular training partners long fingernails that they didn't trim! So keep on top of your mat hygiene! It doesn't take much just some conscious decisions!