Wrestling season is fast approaching, but serious, young wrestlers know that wrestling is not just a winter sport. The wrestlers that will really do well have been preparing long before the first match takes place. Like most sports, there is much preparation that goes into performing well during the few minutes you are actually on the mat. Below you will find a few ways to get prepped for wrestling season.
Don't Underestimate Your Cardio
Think track is the only sport that requires cardio endurance? We often mistakenly think the word cardio only refers to running somewhere. Cardiovascular endurance is important to all athletes involved in any sport. It is especially important to wrestling. You need to be able to keep steady oxygen levels while you are on the mat exerting yourself. The only way to do this is by building your cardio endurance. The best cardio workout for young wrestlers is running. Go for one or two good runs a day, pushing yourself to a pace that really requires you to work. Each day you will feel your endurance building and this will result in more energy and longer stamina on the mat.
Being quick or knowing the most powerful moves mean nothing at all if you do not have the strength to execute those moves or hold your position. Lifting weights will build your muscle mass and strength to ensure you have what it take to take down your opponent. You should be lifting weights at least three times a week. Use enough repetitions to ensure that your last repetition takes maximum effort. This way you know that you are making your muscles work as hard as possible, ensuring that you are increasing your strength with each workout.
Concentrate on Your Core
Your core strength is what will help you hold and execute moves during your actual matches. During your strength training workouts, concentrate on exercises that will build the core and back muscles. The best way to do this is to do exercises that will replicate actual wrestling moves. Some good suggestions would be squats and dead lifts to help build muscles used for lifting an opponent for a take down. However, do not underestimate the importance of hand strengthening exercises too, as this will help with grasping your opponent.
Flexibility is not something you can build overnight. Flexibility is created over time with good stretching practices. Ignoring the importance of stretching and flexibility can result in serious injuries that can bring your wrestling season to a standstill. Incorporate intense, regular stretching into every workout whether it is cardio or strength training.
Hydration and General Good Health
Keeping your body regularly hydrated can do so much for your stamina and endurance on the mat. Shoot for at least a gallon of water a day. Also avoid any unhealthy practices such as smoking or poor eating habits.