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comment How likely is serious injury in martial arts practice?
You may be right. I'm offering a newbie perspective, skewed by my own experience. At our dojo, the Grandmaster stresses "control" in sparring. I would assume that another interested party could find a similar Dojo, which was the point I was trying to make. If I thought I had a serious chance of getting a concussion, I wouldn't dream of going. We spar very hard at times, but always with control. I think a newcomer could find a Dojo with that kind of approach. In our Dojo control goes hand-in-glove with spiritual training.