Re: Aikido injuries
Although rumors of abusive instructors are just rumors, it is important to check out any school or instructor. Injuries should be the exception not the rule. If they are the rule, they can indicate many things including: lack of control, lack of concern for the students, egomania, sadistic tendencies, etc.
Having sustained a serious wrist injury by a fellow chiropractor who happened to be my instructor at the time, I stress safety. My wrist has never been the same (sankyo works). I had one student rupture a ligament in his finger recently in a freak accident. He slapped the mat in a routine throw and did not feel any pain but his finger was flexed when he came up-apparently he ruptured the extensor tendon and we are not sure how that happened-he's a nidan.
Students always have the option of leaving the mat when things appear to be rougher than they think they are able to handle. Any joint injury can be serious if it disrupts the ligament or tendon structures or for that matter tears a muscle. Ligaments are not elastic and have a low blood supply and, therefore, heal slowly and poorly. Tendons do a little better and muscles better yet as they are more elastic and have a better blood supply. A torn muscle, however, can take 4-6 weeks to completely heal. Repetitive joint injuries and especially damage to the cartilage can result in early onset of osteoarthritis, pain and possibly disability.
To me, in today's modern dojo, deliberate injuries are inexcusable. Occasional, accidental injuries will and do occur. Testing scenarios are always precarious, as the adrenaline and, if a young male, the testosterone in combination can make for a risky cocktail. The focus of the dojo on safety, prevention of injuries and learning to take good ukemi will help minimize injuries. It may also be advisable to learn basic first aid as well.