Brazillian Jiu-Jitsu


"Very severe osteoarthritis is present in the left hip... said the x-ray report. Bone-on-bone: cartilage all gone in places. Doctor said that the specialist could inject some product in the gap, it would set like cement and fill the gap. Visions of Spakfilla from Bunnings aisle thirteen. Perhaps No More Gaps?

Hip surgeon tells me no, I'll need a hip replacement in two years. Blood drains from my brain as if I've been choked out. Asks if I have any questions, while the only question is "How do I not fall off this chair?"

My physiotherapist told me to keep doing particular exercises to maintain the strength and flexibility of the muscles around my hip. He thinks I'll never need a hip replacement.

I believe him, even when I limp a bit.

Age is Just a Number

68-year old Ann Perez de Tejada says "Age is just a number" in the interview before she stepped into the MMA octagon with the far younger Laura Dettman. I'd have an interesting conversation with this remarkable lady. She made a really good takedown attempt during the fight. She'd probably be able to beat me into pulp.

However, for me, age is not just a number; during the sparring after my second grading, I was dripping sweat and panting like a dog, getting passed in seconds, while many of the young guys looked as fresh as if they'd just stepped out onto the mat a minute ago. And the thing is, they are all young men and women.

I used to overtake all the other cyclists on the road. Now they all go past me with surprising speed. Yesterday I rode past a cyclist for the first time in about three months. Then he overtook me a few kilometres later. My age is not just a number.

So should I keep going with BJJ? I love it, so the answer is "yes". I'm a bit like one of those early fathers, shunned by their single workmates for droning on about their new baby. People wonder why I just don't change the subject from that same old Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Well, I will always love my son, and I can't see myself stop loving BJJ.