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Wrestling UnderGround >> Wrestling for kids?


1/17/11 11:52 PM
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the rooster
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My son started in judo at late 2 and still does it (he's 6...one day a week). He wanted to wrestle last year because one of his buddies at school did. He showed up and "grappled" well with all the kids his size. But once they started teaching wrestling techniques he really went backwards. He got so focused on processing and trying to do technique that he was to slow. The rules threw him off too (no guard, no ippon throws, etc.). Nonetheless, he made it through the year. It was very tough. He did one tournament and lost 3 matches (2 by pins) and won one (little girl). I was proud of him though because I knew it was the toughest thing he ever did.

I didn't think he would wrestle again but he went to an offseason program that was very relaxed, low key and a lot of drilling. He told me he wanted to wrestle again this year. He wrestles up (with 7 and 8 year olds) and was taking a lot of beatings and his first tournament, he was bracketed with a national champ who choked him out (well almost, I ran out on the mat, but that's a different story). He went 0-2 but an interesting thing happened. I hugged him, told him I loved him and told him he could quit if he wanted too (because he still does judo, he boxed and he played football and he's stuck to them all).

He told me he didn't want to quit. His next tournament, he dominated and went 4-0, 2 pins, hip throw etc. He was so happy. This last weekend he tied for first first and had to matches that went 19-2 and 16-2.

He is getting tougher and tougher, mentally and emotionally and developing some life long character development.

On another note, the wrestling has put his judo through the roof. He's throwing kids left and right and breaking them down and pinning them. They just aren't as tough at this age as wrestler kids.
1/18/11 9:20 AM
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EasyTapper
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Great article I got of the Brandon website. They have some ridiculous streak of winning 459 dual meets starting in 1974-2008. My son has had a really hard fist season. Not sure if he'll do it next year. He's been wanting to quit, but I've made him stick with it.
1/18/11 9:22 AM
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EasyTapper
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 How to Develop Your Young Athlete into a Champion Wrestler

Discuss the latest in Oregon wrestling and beyond at The Oregon Wrestling Message Board

Step one: Start playing basketball, soccer, or any other sport but wrestling.

No really I’m not kidding. I have conducted many interviews with top eastern European wrestlers who have told me that much of their training and conditioning came from playing games and participating in sports other than in wrestling.

Before we get started I want to address two major problems that I see all the time when it comes to training young athletes. First is the quick fix trainer, this is the trainer who is going to make your son or daughter a star in 6-8 weeks. The second is the result orientated parents, the parent that will pay/bribe or do anything to see their child on top.

First is the "Quick Fix Trainer"; this is your local personal trainer who is going to take your child and turn them into a star in 6-8 weeks. Many will charge 50-100 dollars a week to teach your child about how to train with weights but will neglect to teach the important developmental skills that young athletes need. A short time ago I did an interview with Brian Grasso, President of Developing Athletics Inc. www.developingathletics.com a company dedicated to the development of young athletes and he told me that he does not take on a client unless it is for a full year. This is the only way to properly train the basic fundamentals of young athletes.

Secondly is the "result orientated parent". This is the parent who puts out a prize for every medal or trophy their child wins. Its sad to say but I at one time was one of these parents. I use to tell my boys that if you won the state wrestling championships that I would give you $100.00. I didn’t do it as a bribe but as a means of motivation. It was something that we started at the beginning of the year and my goal was to get them to push in their training. It wasn’t until my youngest son took second in state that I knew it was wrong. See when the match was over he was more upset about not getting paid for winning than he was of wrestling hard and placing second. Since that moment I no longer give "Motivational" incentives.

Coaches and parents need to understand that your 8yr old state champion may not even make the varsity wrestling team by the time he reaches high school due to the fact that he may either be burned out by the sport or may have failed to learn the proper skills needed to be a complete athlete.

In the book titled Children & Sports Training – How your future champions should exercise to be healthy, fit and happy, Jozef Drabik Ph.D. writes "Short-term, results-oriented thinking does not very often lead to long-term sports success. Worse, such thinking can lead to grave consequences for all children: injuries as a result of improper training that overloads young bodies and a cavalier acceptance of doping, to mention only two. Finally, Children may develop and indeed many have developed – a negative attitude toward sports and fitness in general, which can cause a lowering of overall fitness and health for whole populations."

After reading this and many articles about the Russians PASM program (Process of Attaining Sports Mastery) I started to re-think my approach to coaching and parenting. What I found was not me trying to live my life through my children (many poor athletic parents who failed in sports try to gain success through their kids) but trying to give them the same thrill of victory that I felt as an athlete many times. Problem was I teaching my kids that victory was the sweetest thing in sports and losing well…was just that losing.

The soviets believed that if children were encouraged to develop a variety of skill, they would quite possibly experience success in several sporting activities. Then as the developing young athlete displayed further interest, and demonstrated and displayed potential, they were nurtured along the path of athletics. Now many will not understand this due to the Tiger Woods syndrome that many parents suffer from. This is the idea that if I start my child specializing at a young age that they will one day make millions in "YOUR" chosen sport.

In eastern European countries and now China training starts for many kids as young as the age of 5. This is something that also happens here in the USA but the big difference is that here in the USA most athletes are playing "Their Sport" while overseas young athletes are learning about movement, balance, coordination and flexibility. Under the Soviet’s PASM the first phase of training is mainly GPP training or General Physical Preparation training. In Dr. Mel Siff’s Book Supertraining he states that "GPP training is intended to provide balanced physical conditioning in endurance, strength, speed, flexibility and other basic factors of fitness…Characteristically, the GPP may include participation in a variety of different physical activities which provide low intensity, all-round conditioning, with little emphasis on specific sporting conditioning." See the soviets believed that unless an athlete’s general fitness base is excellent, he or she will achieve little success in sports. Think of the last time you worked with your child on things like balance and coordination. Many parents think that it’s their Childs fault that they are clumsy and uncoordinated but in all reality it’s the lack of training by the parents that prevented the child from learning the skills needed to master total body control.


1/18/11 9:24 AM
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EasyTapper
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Edited: 01/18/11 10:03 AM
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If you look at any pro sports roster and you will see a list of players who stared in multiple sports. Examples are:
Football & Wrestling
• Lorenzo Neal, FB, Tennessee Titans - NCAA All-American
• Stephen Neal, OL, New England Patriots – NCAA Champ
• Tony Siragusa, DT, Baltimore Ravens – NJ State Champ
• Warren Sapp*, DT Tampa Bay Buccaneers – FL State Champ
• Ray Lewis*, Baltimore Ravens – 2x FL State Champ
• Kelly Gregg, NT, Baltimore Ravens, 3x KS State Champ
• William George, Chicago Bears – 2x PA State Champ
Other Sports
• Dave Winfield was drafted by Three pro teams
• Bo Jackson, Pro Football & Pro Baseball
• Charlie Ward, Football & Pro Basketball
• Tony Gonzales, Pro Football and Basketball
• Antonio Gates, Pro Football & Basketball
The following sport specialization chart (adapted from Tudor Bompa, PhD 1999) demonstrates ideal ages for formal sports participation.
SPORT Age to begin practicing sport Age to start specializing General age
of peak performance
BASEBALL 10-12 15-16 22-28
BASKETBALL 10-12 14-16 22-28
BOXING 13-15 16-17 23-26
FOOTBALL 12-14 16-18 23-27
JUDO 8-10 15-16 22-26
PADDLING 12-14 15-17 22-26
RUGBY 13-14 16-17 22-26
SOCCER 10-12 14-16 22-26
SWIMMING-MEN 7-8 13-15 20-24
SWIMMING-WMN 7-9 11-13 18-22
TENNIS-MEN 7-8 12-14 22-27
TENNIS-WOMEN 7-8 11-13 18-22
VOLLEYBALL 10-12 15-16 22-26
WATER POLO 10-12 16-17 23-26
WEIGHTLIFING 14-15 17-18 23-27
WRESTLING 11-13 17-19 24-27
*Note: Sports experts have suggested that prior to age seven, children should be encouraged to develop physical abilities through informal free play. Skills developed in free play should then be re-enforced through physical education programs.

The important thing to remember is that kids are kids and by just letting them play as any sports as possible they will develop into great athletes in their chosen sport. Don't push your child to play YOUR sports but let them choose for themselves based on their likes and dislikes
Michael Fry is the owner of Grapplers Gym and www.grapplersgym.com. Mike can be reached by email at mike@grapplersgym.com.
1/23/11 2:48 PM
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the rooster
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Tha's why we incent our kids by defining success as trying their best and being good sports.

We are all happy with wins but we are proud of effort. My son went 4-1 in his last tournament and was very upset of his one loss. But I rewarded him for that one loss because he never gave up and I kept talking about that as my favorite match.

He got it. It takes the pressure off of him. He can compete because he wants to and be happy with winning or losing because of how *he* feels but I'm happy that he's courageous for stepping on the mat.

I've given him a couple of opportunities to quit (he didn't want to) and told him next year we could just do off season clinics (which are fun and technique based) and skip season. His call.

But he also plays judo (which he really likes) and football(his biggest love) and boxes. All cyclical.
1/24/11 7:35 AM
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the rooster
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the other thing is that the Gracies have a huge clan of adult blackbelts who have been doing bjj since they could walk (and sometimes some wrestling or judo). It's engrained in them. Royler and others would talk about how they would grow up hanging around the mats and how at tournaments, if they lost, their dad would give them money or take them out to eat to take the notion of losing out of their minds and to have them focus on having fun competing. Something to it in that many love and have a passion for all things grappling.
1/24/11 9:38 AM
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EasyTapper
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EasyTapper - My son has had a really hard fist season. Not sure if he'll do it next year. He's been wanting to quit, but I've made him stick with it.


Well my son has won. His complete lack of effort has caused me to become frustrated enough to pull him out of wrestling. I've never seen anyone NOT want to win. I don't even know how to handle it. He shys away from anything that's hard. The final straw was at a tournament yesterday. he was wrestling another boy who was in the same boat. Hadn't won a match all season. I thought this was finally our opportunity to get a win, and maybe that would give him some motivation. Nope. He goes out there and practically lays down for the kid.

(Keep in mind he's 5 3/4). He wanted these Darth Vader shoes from Striderite. We told him that if he learns to tie his shoes, we would get them for him (even though my wife hates the shoes). Has he even practiced tieing his shoes?? Hell no. Says it's too hard.
1/24/11 1:35 PM
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ChipW
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EasyTapper - Well my son has won. His complete lack of effort has caused me to become frustrated enough to pull him out of wrestling. I've never seen anyone NOT want to win. I don't even know how to handle it.



Im also a wrestling parent of an 8 year old. Its my sons 3rd season. My best advice to you is to back off your 5 year old kid some. Its easy to get caught up in the moment but you have to remember their just kids. This should be fun for them, win or lose.

Ive noticed a big difference in the intensity of different kids programs. Maybe your program is more geared toward competition. Nothing wrong with that but maybe its to much for your kid at this point. Try to find a program that focuses on teaching wrestling but also having fun. Ive noticed the programs that play games during or at the end of practice help the kids who are not as aggressive out a lot.

Tournaments are stressful especially when the parents expect the kid to win. Maybe try just going to practice for a while and not competing. You nor the kid will be as stressed out. Dont expect much especially from his 1st year. Dont tell him everything he did wrong after every match or practice. Focus on the positive. Drill with him at home just by wrestling around with him. Make it fun, not a practice session.

Take that approach and I bet he will love it in a few years.
1/24/11 10:04 PM
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EasyTapper
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ChipW - 
EasyTapper - Well my son has won. His complete lack of effort has caused me to become frustrated enough to pull him out of wrestling. I've never seen anyone NOT want to win. I don't even know how to handle it.



Im also a wrestling parent of an 8 year old. Its my sons 3rd season. My best advice to you is to back off your 5 year old kid some. Its easy to get caught up in the moment but you have to remember their just kids. This should be fun for them, win or lose.

Ive noticed a big difference in the intensity of different kids programs. Maybe your program is more geared toward competition. Nothing wrong with that but maybe its to much for your kid at this point. Try to find a program that focuses on teaching wrestling but also having fun. Ive noticed the programs that play games during or at the end of practice help the kids who are not as aggressive out a lot.

Tournaments are stressful especially when the parents expect the kid to win. Maybe try just going to practice for a while and not competing. You nor the kid will be as stressed out. Dont expect much especially from his 1st year. Dont tell him everything he did wrong after every match or practice. Focus on the positive. Drill with him at home just by wrestling around with him. Make it fun, not a practice session.

Take that approach and I bet he will love it in a few years.


Thanks for the advice. Even though it may not show from the post, winning has never been priority. I understand that in novice wrestling, especially the first season or two it's all about experience and mat time. H
is attitude has been so bad, I've been going out of my way to make it fun, enjoyable, etc.

The wrestling club isn't overly focused on competition. In fact, due to low numbers, we lost pretty much all our A & B wrestlers this year and are just left with the novice kids.

My only problem now is, I'm not really sure what to do with him. I don't want to sign him up for anything, because I don't want to go through this again and have him quit or show 0 effort.
1/25/11 3:26 PM
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the rooster
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ChipW - 
EasyTapper - Well my son has won. His complete lack of effort has caused me to become frustrated enough to pull him out of wrestling. I've never seen anyone NOT want to win. I don't even know how to handle it.



Im also a wrestling parent of an 8 year old. Its my sons 3rd season. My best advice to you is to back off your 5 year old kid some. Its easy to get caught up in the moment but you have to remember their just kids. This should be fun for them, win or lose.

Ive noticed a big difference in the intensity of different kids programs. Maybe your program is more geared toward competition. Nothing wrong with that but maybe its to much for your kid at this point. Try to find a program that focuses on teaching wrestling but also having fun. Ive noticed the programs that play games during or at the end of practice help the kids who are not as aggressive out a lot.

Tournaments are stressful especially when the parents expect the kid to win. Maybe try just going to practice for a while and not competing. You nor the kid will be as stressed out. Dont expect much especially from his 1st year. Dont tell him everything he did wrong after every match or practice. Focus on the positive. Drill with him at home just by wrestling around with him. Make it fun, not a practice session.

Take that approach and I bet he will love it in a few years.


agree completely. My son has the opposite problem. Can't take losing. That can be just as bad believe it or not. Losing is an opportunity to evaluate, learn, change, and practive character development (being a good sport etc). but he's only 6. Working with him on forgetting his last match (win or lose) and just doing his best each match.
1/25/11 4:04 PM
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Bull_in_chinashop
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Edited: 01/25/11 4:49 PM
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 Yeah I've got a 6 year old who is very competitive and can't stand losing. IMHO teach him early on to be a good sport.  I was exactly the same as a kid and you're right about the other qualities but you can work on them at home after the match, after he's shaken the other guys hand and left the mat.

One of the greatest things my dad ever did for me was teach me how to take a loss. He wasn't a wrestler he was a boxer, so when I'd be beside myself in rage with a wrestling match (high school), he couldn't offer me technical advice.  But what he did was give me time to cool off, sit me down and watch a vhs tape of the match and he'd ask me questions that inspire internal analysis.

Why do you think you lost?
How did you feel at the start of the match?
Where do you think you made your first mistake?
What did your coach tell you between periods?
 What did you learn?

by the end of the tape, I had forgotten about how angry I was and we had turned it into a math problem, a puzzle to be solved.  this was something that my grandfather and his boxing trainers had done with him when they watched fights and he knew how effective it was. The tapes weren't always brilliant and immediately impacting, but it was steady and I got to see patterns of my errors etc. 
4/18/11 10:40 PM
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ChipW
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Where do you live downsouthgaboy? I'm in north Georgia too. If your in northwest ga your best bet is to get to the utc kids program. College coaches and their wrestlers working with the kids. You won't find anything better without driving to Atlanta Phone Post
4/20/11 12:38 AM
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Bull_in_chinashop
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dwnsouthgaboy - common mistakes kids make technicially?  Things to look for?  I'd like to get the fundementals down before "trying to get good".  Any advice?
offense. not enough forward pressure, they don't level change before they shoot, they look down at the mats instead of keeping their neck in tight and looking thru the shot.

defense. they don't level change, they don't move their feet, they keep their elbows out, they don't know how to handfight..

lol they're kids! they need help everywhere! :-)

as a parent, I'd check out some videos etc. Gable had a few series, there are a few sets about how to teach kids, and many other sets out done by college coaches ex iowa state, oklahoma, etc..   for some odd reason, combat sports international had a ton of wrestling instructional dvds they advertise in their catalog.
 
4/20/11 11:02 AM
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ChipW
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DownsouthGaboy,
Your pretty close to Elite Training Center in Buford Ga. about an hour id guess. Their probably the best school in the state right now. You will have several state placers around your kids age and weight to work with. Even if you can only make it to 1 or 2 practices a month you will see vast improvement in your sons wrestling if you go there.

In Atlanta you have Elite, the Compound, The Wrestling Center and The Wrestling Academy. Most of the best wrestlers in the state come out of those programs. Regardless of what school they actually wrestle for, they do their training at one of those places.
6/12/11 6:49 AM
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john joe
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Fighters Only Magazine
ironbear - Bull your right. I hate watching this year, my son is 8 and it is painful for the both of us. I am afraid he will quite on me.


Not saying its the case but at any point if you end up having to force him, you will put him off for life. That six hour clinic sounds like it might have gone some way towards that already :/

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