To say I was clumsy as a child would most certainly be an understatement. I somehow managed to break my left bursa sac twice falling up a flight of stairs on separate occasions, frequently tripped myself, fell several feet down a pine tree at my maternal grandparents’ house which I remember not being so much hurt as bewildered, wondering what misstep caused my rapid descent (I never told my parents about that, shhhh). Somewhere between toddler and age oh, 4, possibly earlier, I remember falling down an entire flight of stairs after crawling around on all fours pretending I was a Bassett hound, and reasoning that long dogs like that with such short little legs could get down a flight of stairs, I should be able to do it!
There was also the kids gymnastics, somewhere between 8 or 9 I think, in which we held my birthday party at a gymnastics gym, and in ‘showing’ all the kids how to get through the course I managed to trip, fall, get myself tangled and faceplant through almost every single obstacle they set up.
Although I somersaulted through the last obstacle like a champ.
I remember the instructor supervising the party having a pained look, one of those, ‘that’s gotta hurt’ expressions on her face in her polo and early ’90s hair asking, “…you sure you don’t want someone else to do it?”
Remarkably through all these feats of grace and athleticism, I remained pretty unscathed, not breaking a bone until a jump and bad landing during volleyball practice in junior high.
My point being I guess I find it interesting that some people are so afraid to fall when it comes to judo or jiu jitsu- the floor is padded, and it’s probably going to be a lot more gentle than most of the falls you have taken in your life, on sidewalks, hardwood floors, basketball courts, stairs, etc. Sure, most of your life you have been told to be careful and NOT fall, but really, out of all the slips, trips and hard knocks you’ve had in your life, wouldn’t you have preferred that a cushy tatame had been there to take the impact?