i read a post recently about how bad it hurts when you first start jits and it got me thinking about something. like that poster i just started training some jits and judo and it hurts like hell. im just curious if anyone knows what sort of damage it does to you later in life putting your joints and ligaments through all this abuse. could anyone comment on any 70 year old grapplers that spent their life on the mat and what sort of shape they are in and if it adds to arthritis or any other ailments?
I hate to say anything negative about martial arts, but a very high % of serious grapplers tend to have certain types of permanent injuries--knees, shoulders, neck, lower back. Judo seems to be the worst for some reason. If you can stick with it, people who still grapple competitively in their 40s look like they're in their 20s, but it's tough to escape the injury bug, particularly when you get older.
I know I'm going OT, but this is one of the reasons people should give styles like TKD and Aikido more respect. They allow the participant to compete for a long time without as much chance of injury. Sports like MT and Judo are great for competition, but as a lifestyle it's difficult to maintain past a certain age.
The injury thing is the main concern though. If you look at catch wrestlers from back in the day, they all lived to be in their 80's and 90's, because they were in such good shape, and some competed or taught well into their retirement years. Injuries WILL stack up, but as for the art itself, it doesn't cause any medical ailments like arthritis, as far as I know.
i wrestled and coached for over 15 years, and my knees are shot now. ive had acl, acl/mcl/maniscus, and countless scopings and scrapings. there is a toll your body takes, but if you work construction your whole life, or any physical labor position, its really no worse. you really have to work hard to keep as flexible, and in as good shape as you can, because laziness leads to injury.