Five Tips For New Wrestlers
Every wrestler who is on the mat had to start at some point. For some, it was when they were very young and have been wrestling most of their lives, but for most, wrestling starts in junior high or high school. It can be very intimidating walking into a wrestling practice for the first time not knowing anything. So here are some tips for all new wrestlers out there to make the most of your first year of wrestling.
Mat Time Is Very Important
If you are brand new to wrestling, one thing you should focus on is spending as much time on the mat as possible including practice, open rooms, and in season and out of season tournaments. Generally speaking, the more time you spend on the mat, the more reps of takedowns, escapes, breakdowns, and pins you will rack up and the more reps you have under your belt, the better you will be.
Plus in wrestling, there is somewhat of an untangle aspect of the sport that comes along with time spent on the mat. There are things you will need to learn, minor details, that can only come after you have spent many hours on the mat in different positions and situations. So if you are just getting started in wrestling, commit to spending as much time as possible on the mat. This means showing up to open rooms and staying after practice to work on fundamentals with a coach or a teammate.
Don’t Worry About Cutting Weight
One aspect of wrestling that is different than most other sports is cutting weight. If you are new to wrestling, do not worry about cutting weight. Your main focus as a new wrestler should be on learning fundamental techniques not cutting weight. Wrestling can already be stressful and uncomfortable at times, especially if you are new to the sport, the last thing you should be doing is adding extra stress to yourself by cutting a lot of weight. So focus on wrestling, not cutting weight.
Watch Wrestling Videos
One thing you can do if you are new to wrestling that will really help you to progress fast is to watch videos of wrestling. You can easily go on YouTube and watch NCAA or Olympic matches or you can watch technique videos from the best wrestlers in the world. It is even very beneficial to watch videos of your own matches with a coach to look for weaknesses or bad habits.
Everyone to some degree or another is a visual learner, so by just watching some of the best wrestlers in the world, you will both consciously and subconsciously pick up on their good habits and techniques. You might also see them use a move you have been struggling with in a different way that helps it click with you. The internet can be a valuable tool, be sure to use it.
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Spend A Lot Of Time In Your Stance
The very first thing a brand new wrestler will learn is a wrestling stance. At first, it will feel very awkward and it will seem difficult to stay in a stance for a long period of time, but having solid wrestling stance is the foundation that all of your offense and defense will stem from. Because of its importance, it is vitally important to get comfortable in a wrestling stance. So as a new wrestler, you should try to spend as much time in a wrestling stance as possible; both in practice and even at home. Focus on keeping good positioning and moving around. The more time you spend in your stance, the more natural it will feel and your offense and defense will improve.
Check out this video on a maintaining and moving around in a good wrestling stance.
Set Realistic Goals
Your first year of wrestling can be very fun but can also be very frustrating. Most people lose a lot more than they win their first year of wrestling, but if you want to be good, you have to stick it out and one thing that helps is to set realistic goals for yourself. Some examples might be to win 50% of your matches or to get thirty takedowns for the season. You can also set goals of how many double legs you want to hit after practice each week. Set yourself smaller, short term goals that you know you can achieve but will still challenge you. This will not only help your moral, but also gives you a plan that will help you improve faster.
Wrestling is such an amazing sport that has so much to offer in terms of life lessons and learning to work hard. If you are new to wrestling, be sure to utilize all the tools around to help you improve. If you are looking for some great wrestling technique for beginners, be sure to check out “Wrestling Fundamentals From The Bad Guy by Chael Sonnen”.