Can I Train BJJ With Ringworm?

You may have just caught your first batch of ringworm. And now are staring at that ugly red circle on your body wondering how do I deal with ringworm and when can I return to BJJ? The answer is sooner than you think.

Can I train BJJ with ringworm? You can not train BJJ if you have a fresh untreated case of ringworm as you are highly contagious. 3-5 days after you start treating your ringworm with an anti-fungal cream such as Lamisil you will be able to train BJJ as you no longer will be contagious even if the red rash is still visible. If you want to be extra cautious you can wait until the rash completely disappears before training again.

Can I Compete In A BJJ Tournament With Ringworm?

Can I compete in a BJJ tournament with ringworm? Yes, technically you can compete in a BJJ tournament with ringworm as BJJ tournaments do not have skin checks and I haven’t seen rules which prevent athletes competing with ringworm. However you should not compete in BJJ with untreated ringworm as it is highly contagious and you could spread it to other competitors.

Unlike at BJJ tournaments, at wrestling tournaments skin checks are common. If they discover you have ringworm you will not be allowed to compete.

How Can I Avoid Ringworm From BJJ?

How can I avoid ringworm from BJJ? To avoid getting ringworm from BJJ you should train at a clean gym. Only train at a gym that is cleaning and bleaching the mats daily. Shower immediately after training and scrub your body thoroughly. Wash all your gear immediately after training. Eat foods which promote good bacteria (Yogurt, fermented vegetables). Do not shower right before training as it washes away healthy bacteria from your skin making you more susceptible to infections.

Eddie Bravo gives a great monologue on avoiding ringworm based on personal experience.

How Can I Treat Ringworm From BJJ?

How Can I Treat Ringworm From BJJ? The most effective way to ringworm from BJJ is to use an anti-fungal cream. I recommend Lamisil as within 3-5 days you can be back training and within 1 week your ringworm should be completely gone. You want to find a cream that contains Terbinafine and then all you need to do is apply the cream a few times a day for a week and then bam no more ringworm.

Can I Train BJJ With Staph?

Can I roll with staph? No, you can not roll or train BJJ if you have a serious staph infection where you have a wound, you need to take antibiotics and rest. Staph can be contagious particularly if you have an oozing wound. Also by training with Staph you place further stress on your immune system which could prevent you from recovering from your staph infection.

How Do I Prevent Getting Staph From BJJ?

How do I prevent getting staph from BJJ? A key to preventing getting staph from BJJ is not to train when you have open wounds, no matter how small they are. Staph needs openings in the skin to infect you, by training BJJ while you have an open you are drastically increasing your chances of getting staph. To be on the safe side you should wait until all wounds close before returning to training BJJ. Unfortunately covering wounds is not enough as staph can still bypass band-aids.

Other things you can do to prevent getting staph from BJJ include:

  • Avoid showering before BJJ training – you need your body’s healthy bacteria on guard against nasties

  • Shower after training and deeply scrub your all parts of your body – ASAP

  • Use a natural anti-fungal soap such as Defence Soap
  • Wash your towel regularly
  • Wash everything you wore to training immediately after training – Gi, shirts, rashguards, belts
  • Only wear clean and freshly washed clothing to training

  • Closely monitor all open wounds, and pay particular attention to cuts, pimples and in-grown hairs

What Are The Most Common Skin Infections In BJJ?

What are the most common skin infections in BJJ? The most common skin infections in BJJ are Ringworm, Staph, MRSA, Herpes, Cellulitis and Impetigo. Herpes is the only infection that can not be cured however in most cases the immune system can suppress the virus. MRSA is the only serious infection that can lead to hospitalization and in some extreme cases death. Fortunately if you treat MRSA early you should make a full recovery

Do All BJJ Practitioners Get Skin Infections?

Do All BJJ practitioners Get Skin Infections? Yes, if you train BJJ long enough you will eventually contract a skin infection. As Tyler Durden says,“On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero”. Fortunately the vast majority of skin infections in BJJ are mild and clear up within a week.

Why Are Skin Infections Common In BJJ?

Why are skin infections common in BJJ? Skin infections are common in BJJ due to the amount of skin to skin contact which occurs in the sport. Add into the mix sweat and not so clean mats and you have a breeding ground for skin infections. Not to mention that the majority of BJJ practitioners are young men who aren’t known for having the best hygiene, further compounding the risk of skin infections.

Skin infections are transmitted either through skin to skin contact with an infected individual or through bacteria living on your own skin entering your body through cuts and abrasions. In BJJ both possibilities for skin infections are a reality. To limit skin to skin contact and reduce the risk of skin infections you should wear long sleeve rashguards and spats (compression tights).

Unfortunately skin infections are a reality in BJJ and the chance of getting one is very high if you train BJJ for years. Fortunately the vast majority of skin infections which occur in BJJ are mild and at worst will take you off the mat for a week or two. We have laid out in this article several strategies you can employ to reduce your risk of getting a skin infection from BJJ and ways to heal and get you back on the mat ASAP if you do happen to catch one.


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