Train in the athletic stance. Using an athletic stance during training increases the benefits of your drills and conditioning exercises. There are three basic athletic stance positions to choose from. Select the one that feels the most natural to you and make sure that you always begin your training sessions in this stance.
Universal. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Bend your knees slightly and lean forward. Put your hands up in front of as if you are getting ready to grab your opponent.
Staggered. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, but place either your right or left leg a little ahead of the other leg, as if you have just taken a small step forward. Bend forward so that your back is almost parallel and put your hands out in front of you.
Parallel. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and bend at the waist until your back is parallel with the ground. Then, put your hands out in front of you.
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Incorporate chain wrestling. Chain wrestling is a style where you plan out moves for specific situations, such as when you are in a hold. You can use chain wrestling to help you gain the advantage, rather than repeating the same moves over and over again. Chain wrestling is similar to making a sequence of moves in chess to beat your opponent.
For example, you might develop a specific move to counter a hold and then have additional moves to follow that one, which will help you to achieve your goal of pinning your opponent.
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Add strength training. If you are not yet following a strength training routine, then now is a great time to start. Strength training can increase your power and this will give you an advantage during your matches. Make sure that you work with a trainer who is knowledgeable about strength training for wrestlers. Some good strength training exercises to add to your routine include:
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Enhance your agility. Wrestlers need to be strong, but they also need to be agile, so agility training should be part of your program as well. You can improve your agility through training matches and actual wrestling matches, but you can also try other strategies, such as jumping rope or running obstacle courses.
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Include cardiovascular training. Wrestling is an intense cardiovascular workout, so it is also important to include some vigorous cardiovascular exercise in your training regimen, such as running or climbing stairs. You can use your cardio routine as a warmup to your workout, or incorporate the cardio into your wrestling training.
For example, you could run a couple of miles before you start your workout, or sprint across the gym a couple of times in between your strength training exercises.
Make sure that you take a few minutes to stretch before and after your workouts.
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Consider attending a wrestling camp in the summer. Wrestling camps offer intensive training with talented coaches and other dedicated wrestlers like yourself. If you want to immerse yourself in wrestling and return to school in the fall with better wrestling skills, then a wrestling camp might be your best bet.
Ask your coaches if they know about any good wrestling camps in your area.
Developing the Right Mindset
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View your mistakes as learning opportunities. If you lose a match, try not to see it as a bad thing. Instead, use your mistakes to help you develop into a better wrestler. After you lose a match, take time to reflect on what went wrong. Ask yourself questions, such as:
What advantage did the other wrestler have over you?
What can you do to ensure that you can overcome this advantage in the future?
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Listen to your coach. If your coach offers you advice or feedback, then try to listen with an open mind and do your best to put the advice into practice. Remember that your coaches do not correct you or tell you how to wrestle to show off or make you feel bad, they do so to help you improve as a wrestler.
If a coach gives you advice that you do not understand, ask for clarification.
If a coach gives you advice that you do not agree with, try the suggestion before you decide whether or not to include it in your practice.
Never talk back to your coaches or be disrespectful, even if you totally disagree with them.
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Visualize yourself succeeding. Before you go into a match, it is important to take about five minutes and visualize yourself winning the match. This practice has been shown to be effective for athletic success.
To use visualization, close your eyes and picture yourself achieving your goal. Imagine how you will overcome certain obstacles and how you will feel after you have defeated your opponent. What will you look like? How will you feel?
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Practice every day. Persistence is one of the best ways to improve as a wrestler, so make sure that you are practicing every day. Maintaining a regular, consistent practice schedule will help you to build up your skills and keep you focused on wrestling.
Avoid taking long breaks away from your training. For example, do not take the summer off even if you are not in school. Maintain a regular training schedule in the summer just as you would during the school year.
Taking Good Care of Yourself
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Follow a balanced diet. Following a balanced diet will help to ensure that you are in your best condition when it is time to compete. Your coach may provide you with specific diet recommendations based on your need to lose or gain weight.
Make sure that your diet includes a good balance of lean protein, fruits, vegetables, complex carbohydrates, and low-fat dairy products.
Make sure that you talk to your doctor before making any drastic changes to your diet.
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Drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated is important for all athletes, but sometimes wrestlers will try to restrict their fluid intake to lose weight. However, this is not an effective way to lose weight. Make sure that you are staying hydrated by drinking at least eight 8 ounce glasses of water every day.
Remember to replenish the fluids that you lose during training sessions by drinking water while you are training as well.
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Get lots of rest. After a long training session, your body will need rest in order to repair and restore itself. Make sure that you are getting at least eight hours of sleep every night. If you have trouble sleeping at night, try:
Cutting back on caffeine and avoiding altogether late in the day
Establishing a bedtime routine, such as taking a shower, putting on pajamas, and reading a book
Turn off screens such as televisions, computers, tablets, and cell phones
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Steer clear of things that are bad for you. As an athlete, you have to take excellent care of your body. Otherwise, it will not perform at the highest possible level. Therefore make sure that you avoid things that might be harmful to your body, such as:
cigarettes and other tobacco products
alcohol and drugs
unhealthy foods such as fried, greasy, sugary, and fatty foods