I have a checklist that I run down before class because I always forget something. It goes like this:
- Trim finger and toe nails. This is so important. I remember sparring with my instructor only to look down and see his hand covered in blood. Yep, I had caught him with the corner of a fingernail.
- Mouth guard. When it comes to sparring at the end of class, it’s time to protect yourself. I use a Shock Doctor Gel Max Mouth Guard.
- Water Bottle. If it’s a longer class or a hot day, I take two.
- Contact Lenses. I know some of the others in the class just remove their glasses but I wouldn’t be able to see what the instructor is doing without lenses.
- Take your watch off.
- Rash vest. I wear a compression top under my GI. It wicks sweat and prevents burns or chaffing from the GI.
- Change of clothes. At least a shirt change for the journey home
- Don’t forget to pack your GI pants, jacket and belt!
- Phone, wallet and keys
And I’m out the door.
Don’t eat for at least 1.5 hours, preferably 2, before class. BJJ is physically demanding involves a lot of rolling and compression of your chest and stomach. I have often felt like I was going to throw up but this class I actually got sick in my mouth. Gross.
Groin guards or cups are not allowed under IBJJF rules:
8.3.7 Use of any foot gear, head gear, hair pins, jewellery, cups (genital protectors), or any other protector fashioned of hard material that may cause harm to an opponent or the athlete him/herself is forbidden. Also forbidden is the use of eyes protectors, even if they are made for sports practices.
A cup can be used to apply pressure or as a lever for some submissions and is therefore not allowed.