- Heal up the body and mind. If you have had any injuries go see a doctor of osteopathy (DO), a quality physical therapist (myo-fascial release) or sports psychologist to ensure that they really heal up. The mind is just as important as the body. The next step would be to strengthen the formerly weak and injured areas so that they aren’t an issue in the coming season or in post wrestling adulthood.
- Assess your season and figure out the areas that you need to improve. You should have a routine that works for every part of reaching your goals: Diet, athleticism, technique, strength, post weigh-in recovery, etc.
- If you don’t know why you want to get better figure out your “why”. This will help you have the motivation to take the next hard step. Knowing why you want something will make everything easier in you post wrestling life.
- Recognize all that you’re doing well and what is good in your life. Knowing what is good in your life may be one of the most important things that a person/wrestler can know. This awareness is significant and few take the time to explore the positives in their life. Those that do take the time are generally better able to deal with the “pressure” or “stress” that life creates.
- Improve your technique. If you haven’t mastered 10 moves get busy. If you have, strive for 20. I don’t believe in knowing thousands of moves. That many can never be mastered. Having a couple of different attack points and angles from above and below the waist allows you to adjust in a tough match. Customize technique to your body type.
- Use the above information to work on your mental game. You’re building a positive mindset by addressing weakness, growing your already competent areas and knowing why and what is good.
- Get outside. Don’t spend all your free time playing FortNite; get out and do some activities it’s good for mind and spirit. Walk barefoot, absorb the energy and walk through the woods or forest, swim in a lake or the ocean.
Steps to take in the Wrestling Room:
A generic thing that almost all wrestlers can use is sequenced wrestling. Usually called chain wrestling. Some coaches teach 5 or 6 moves in a row. I haven’t found that as effective as having a two or 3 move sequence. In big matches many wrestlers try the same move over and over again unsuccessfully. You need to practice dealing with counters to your attacks. In practice put yourself in different situations where your attack is defended and you work the counter. Head inside single is countered by head pinch belly wrap. You then practice clearing the knee and stepping over the ankle. Or you counter an aggressive move to your own aggressive move. Down block to a slide by. We practice finishing shots un-countered while drilling every practice or maybe your coach has you shadow lots of down blocks but how many of them are linked to a slide by? Very few.
From bottom the majority of wrestlers have a standup as their first move but if it gets shut down even fewer have a standing switch in their arsenal or a third adjustment like a standing granby waiting in their bag of tricks. Kids that are having trouble separating in a stand up (besides getting better hip separation) try setting up a standing granby by trying or faking a standing switch. It will keep your opponent’s mind questioning your positioning and balance and it can help get your hips in good position for the granby.
Work these 2 and 3 move sequences over the summer and you will be ready when your go to move gets countered in a big match.