Mixed Martial Arts First Aid:
Using Basic Traditional Chinese Medicinal
Techniques For Fast Post Fight Recovery
By Sifu Kevin Seaman
The Chinese have for centuries been the experts in the ancient recovery system known as “Dit Da” or Hit Medicine. Having over 30 years experience, traditionally trained Sifu and Pro MMA Striking Coach Kevin Seaman, will layout the essential basics that every coach and fighter should know about fight recovery. How it is possible to stop and even reverse the trauma of bruising and hematoma. Reducing localized swelling without ice. Checking for fractures using a $20. instrument that fits in your pocket. Stop bleeding instantly with the use of a five-dollar over the counter powder. Integrate the effectiveness of the ancient methods into your modern fight training and gain an edge that will help you fight more and recover quicker.
Your hand is raised in victory as the winner is announced. The crowd roars with approval as it echoes through the stadium. The shear adrenalin of cage competition keeps you training, motivated, and hungry for more. As you return to the locker room, your trainer begins his evaluation, checking your
face, arms, legs, feet and hands, taking note of the various levels of bumps, bruises and trauma. “Good…” He briefly checks the small cut above your eye and commences his interview. “Any pressure in your head, how do your eyes feel, does it sting when I press here?” He cuts off your handwraps
carefully and disposes of the mass of garbled tape and gauze. He pulls out a metal tuning fork and strikes it on the bench as you hydrate with the formula he mixed up. “How’s this feel, any sharp pain on this bone?” He runs firmly along the bone in your hand with the base of the tuning fork. “No?
Great!” He opens his bag as the Athletic Commission Official and some of the other fighters and trainers glance over curiously, while your trainer begins to work on you methodically. He lines up a variety of dark bottles and begins immediately to apply the first one, spraying your knee, shins and feet, then barks, “Right hand, spread your fingers.” He sprays the brown gunk thickly on the back of your hand and pulls out a roll of cellophane, wrapping your right hand with the self-stick plastic. The familiar herbal scent of the Dit Da Jow permeates the air, the smell mildly pleasing yet curious.
Working like a technician, the trainer re-sprays the areas he had hit earlier, commenting “These bruises are almost gone Kid, breathe this vial for about a minute, but don’t get any on your nose or it will burn like an SOB. It’s peppermint oil, it will help you bring more oxygen into your blood and wake you up a bit.” He puts some kind of hot oil on his hands and rubs it vigorously deep into your neck and traps. “Ahhh, that’s tightening up!” you hiss. “Relax and breathe”, the trainer whispers, I’m almost done. Nice job tonight, finish your recovery drink.” He quickly removes the acupuncture needles placed earlier from your forehead and knees. You look at his smiling face with a big sigh,
“Thanks Sifu, you’re the best!” The next day you feel great. No bruises, no headache, a little sore maybe…but, “Hell, it was a hard fight.
The technician was using the methods developed through hundreds of years of medicinal technology known as Dit Da, the techniques of Chinese Hit Medicine. The pre-fight and post-fight procedures of the Dit Da technician can have a dramatic affect on the healing and recovery time of the Martial Athlete. The Chinese have long been the pioneers in ancient and modern medical procedures and produce absolutely astounding results in the arena of Fight First Aid. Make no mistake! The information in this article is no replacement for a doctor, trained Sifu or Hit Medicine Expert. If you are serious about your Professional Fight career, everything you do should bring you closer to your goal as a MMA Champion. Having a qualified Dit Da trainer is essential. However, there are some simple things you can do to help accelerate your healing and recovery. Here are a few suggestions that will help your recovery from hard training and competition abuse to your body.
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Dit Da Jow- Translated means Hit Medicine Wine, though never taken internally and often is very poisonous if consumed, this alcohol-based potion is the generic name for bruise liniment. Nearly every Chinese Medical Practitioner has their own unique recipe. There are varying degrees of quality available ranging from very little to dramatic results depending upon quality. When high in quality, this lotion will literally dissipate the blood contusion in minutes. I prefer to apply this with an atomizer spray bottle. This liniment is most effective when applied within 10 minutes of the trauma. After the initial hour the body’s rescue and recovery system is in full gear. Initial Dit Da First Aid minimizes the catabolic process and accelerates the anabolic processes. Every hour you wait extends the recovery and healing process. Sprains and contusions may be wrapped with cellophane overnight. This will help with herbal compound to absorb into the localized area.
Zheng Gu Shui- This is a hot external liniment used traditionally to increase blood flow to and surrounding areas difficult to affect such as joints, ligaments and bone. This liniment is also alcohol-based and very volatile. When sprayed on the arms and legs Zheng Gu Shui warms up the limbs, bringing heat to the athletes extremities prior to the physical warm up. It is excellent in the promotion of body’s joint and bone healing. Never wrap the area the liniment is applied to as Zheng Gu Shui will chemically burn the skin.
Arnica Montana- An herbal embrocation used for relief of muscle or joint pain. Arnica is also very affective on bruising. The great quality about Arnica is it is inexpensive, easily obtainable, almost odorless and because it is not aromatically obtrusive you can use it several times a day and still be socially acceptable. Arnica Gel is my preferred form of the liniment. Wrap the Arnica treated area with cellophane overnight and will it absorb into your skin more affectively.
Yunnan PaiYao- This is an excellent over the counter blood clotter. It’s in a small bottle in powder form. Dip a Q-tip with a little Vaseline or a just dry and apply to a cut or up the nose for nosebleed. It’s inexpensive and stops bleeding immediately. I was not allowed to use this ringside by one State Athletic Commission at the UFC, because it was, as they said…not approved. So, check before the fight event.
WoodLock Oil- This is sold under the brand name wong to yick. This is an excellent hot oil based liniment used as a deep muscle rub. The trainer can rub this vigorously into the sore or tight muscles, or areas that have been subjected to strain, tear or overstretching. Rub liberally into the inflicted area. Stay away from sensitive areas such as the groin and eyes, this oil is very difficult to remove and will burn intensely. Wash your hands well with hot, soapy water. All oil-based liniments are resilient and will stay on your hands if not washed. Woodlock brings heat and blood to the muscle, increasing blood flow is the key to fast recovery.
Tuning Fork- This is a simple instrument used to detect bone fractures on site and in the field. This was used prior to the development of x-rays by doctors and is still very effective method of first diagnosis. The tuning fork is not infallible however and should be followed up with a visit to a radiologist if there is any possibility of fracture. if there is ANY doubt, get e.r. bound.
About The Writer/Trainer
Kevin Seaman began his formal martial arts training in 1970, using it as a method of self-development and personal discipline. To date he has achieved advanced instructor levels in seven different martial arts systems, totaling eight Blackbelts, and is a certified boxing coach, Pro MMA Coach, certified police defensive tactics instructor, published author and certified trainer. He also has an extensive background in basic Chinese Medical Practices, exercise physiology, strength and conditioning, mental performance, and nutrition.
Kevin Seaman endorses Dr. Jed Michael as one of the BEST Pre-Fight and Post-Fight Dit Da Doctors.
© Kevin Seaman 2008 All rights reserved.
Kevin Seaman makes no claims as to efficacy or safety of imported Chinese patent medicines. No warranties for products or procedures apply to products appearing on this page. Information on this site is provided for educational purposes and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your own physician or other medical professional. Kevin Seaman and mmamedicine.com will not be held liable, responsible or accountable for any result in reference to this article.
Information and statements regarding dietary supplements, topical agents or procedures have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.