You love training BJJ and are excited to train tonight. However you feel a bit sick and are wondering what to do. The thought of missing BJJ training due to a mild cold irritates you but stop and think before you decide to train while sick.
Should You Train BJJ If You Have A Cold Or Are Sick? The answer is no. By training BJJ sick you risk exacerbating your current illness which could lead to serious illness resulting in hospital visits. You risk transferring your sickness to one of your BJJ teammates, forcing them to take time off for training which is pretty selfish. Your Jiu Jitsu training while you are sick is not going to be very effective, your conditioning will suffer, your body won’t feel right and you will move sluggishly.
If you are feeling sick and value your own and your teammates’s health please take a few days to recover otherwise you risk making your condition worse, possibly turning a minor illness into something serious forcing you to take weeks or months off the mat.
Am I Too Sick To Train BJJ?
If you are wondering if you should skip tonight’s training due to sickness then most likely you should. If you have symptoms such as runny nose, cough, nausea, temperature even if they are mild then you should stay home. Even if you just feel a bit off it is best to skip training. Don’t be one of those people who thinks they can train around their illness by just drilling or going light. Yes, this may result in you having a moderate workout however it still places your training partners at risk of catching your illness. Also while you are sick your immune system is weakened which places you at higher risk of contracting viruses. By being in close proximity to others even if you aren’t engaging in strenuous exercise you are risking contracting a more serious illness. Even if you feel a little bit sick please stay home for your and training partners’ sake.
What Are The Consequences Of Training BJJ While Sick?
You could make yourself really sick. If you have a mild cold then mild to moderate exercise is permitted. However BJJ is not mild exercise and finishing a 2 hour marathon rolling session presents the real chance of turning your mild cold into a serious condition. By training BJJ with a cold you could develop pneumonia which could force you to the hospital and put you out of training for weeks or months. Training BJJ with a cold can also significantly slow down your recovery time. By placing extra stress on your immune system it may take your body weeks to recover from a cold it could normally shake off in a couple days if it had been given the rest it needs.
Having a negative impact on your teammates’ lives. While training BJJ you form a close bond with your training partners. Many people form close friendships with their teammates. The reality is due to the close contact nature of BJJ the chance of you infecting a training partner with a cold is very high. I think you would feel pretty guilty if you were to infect someone who you considered a friend and this resulted in them not only being unable to train their favourite hobby but potentially forcing them to miss work or other important events in their life. To avoid the negative consequences of training BJJ while sick, just stay home a few days.
When Can I Return To BJJ After Being Sick?
You are sick, maybe you have taken a few days off training but you are starting to feel better. Now you are wondering when can you get back to BJJ. The temptation is to return to training as soon as you feel well enough to train but wait until you are completely symptom free. Typically, if you have a cold you will be contagious as long as you have symptoms even if they are mild. This period usually lasts for 5-7 days but in rare cases can be up to 2 weeks. You should return to BJJ when you are symptom free and just to be safe wait a couple of days after your symptoms have subsided to avoid any nasty complications or spreading your cold around the gym.
What Can I Do If I’m Sick But Want To Train BJJ?
If you have a mild cold I recommend you do some solo drilling. You can find videos on Youtube which have lots of great solo drills which will improve your BJJ. I recommend performing animal movements, stretching, shadow wrestling. If you have a boxing bag or grappling dummy you can also use that to practice your movement and mimic passing drills. Grappling dummies are also great to practice your pins and takedown positioning.
You can also do a strength or conditioning workout. You can never be too strong or fit in BJJ. Put together a little circuit with kettlebells, skipping, sprints and you will have a great workout. Just make sure not to overdo it and give your body the rest it needs to recover so you can get over cold and get back on the mats as soon as possible.
If you feel too sick to do any exercise don’t worry. I recommend you watch some BJJ instructionals. BJJ instructionals can really help you improve your game by showing you new techniques and helping you solve problems you are facing. Just be careful you are well produced content by high level grapplers. I recommend you check out Keenan Cornelius and Gordon Ryan, both are legit BJJ grapplers and have lots of great content.
If you are sick or have a mild cold and are thinking of training BJJ, please don’t. You will place your own and your teammate’s health at risk. Make sure you take a few days off to rest and recover. Don’t worry you won’t lose all your skills, sometimes in fact breaks can lead to you improving. During your time-off do some solo training if your illness is mild and if you are really sick pop on some BJJ instructionals. Before you return to training make sure you are symptom free, your training partners will thank you.