Thread: Aikido injuries
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Old 02-06-2006, 12:43 PM   #45
John Brockington
Dojo: Retsushinkan/Birmingham, AL
Location: Birmingham, AL
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 65
Re: Aikido injuries

Dad of doc2b-
I'm sorry I didn't see this thread until today, because I would have responded to your dilemma when it was more timely, but in any case if you see this message I hope it helps you and your daughter in your considerations on her practicing aikido while preparing for medical school. Let me first say that I am a practicing physician, on faculty in the department of Neurology at the university here, and I am also a shodan in aikido, preparing for nidan test (2nd degree black belt) in a few weeks. I have also experienced various minor and not so minor injuries in aikido, including separating both acromioclavicular joints (AC joints) on different occasions. On both occasions, it was painful and inconvenient and affected my sleep more than anything, but I eventually recovered completely. I seriously doubt if I could have performed surgery during the six or so weeks of initial healing, but now can detect no impairment of fine motor control on either side. But let me add something else, which is really why I'm writing this. Aikido has helped me immeasurably in practicing medicine, and I mean this from the bottom of my heart. Because aikido requires really blending with situations and conflict more than totally dictating a response, I am much less judgemental of my patients, more accepting of their foibles (and my own), and in many ways feel closer to them than before. I think that I take people and situations on their own terms more now, and I certainly feel a lot less stress because of this. You may or may not know this, but in medical school and residency training there is often an emphasis on "fixing the problem," and your daughter will get a huge dose of this in a surgical residency. Well, guess what? Some things can't be "fixed" or simply taken care of, some patients are uncooperative and resentful, some doctors are petulant, entitled and unhappy, and so on. There is a lot more to the practice of medicine than knowing diseases and treatments, and a whole lot of it is how one deals with people and ones' self when under stress. The more skills your daughter has to deal with a position of extreme stress and responsibility, aside from just the necessary capacity for the intellectual/physical practice of medicine, the better off she and her patients will be in the long run. Please contact me if I can be of any more help with this. John Brockington
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