Follow our wrestling and cultural trip to Bulgaria.

Freestyle & Greco Roman Training Camp

Posted on Apr 9, 2017 in Bulgaria, Events, News, Practices

We are holding a 5-day, 11-practice freestyle & Greco Roman Training camp as part of our Wrestling & Cultural Exchange Program. Wrestlers will participate in Bulgarian style practices; learn techniques, tactics and strategies from Bulgarian coaches; and train with wrestlers from Bulgaria and Casco Bay Elite. Bulgarian wrestlers, Casco Bay Elite team members and Training Camp attendees will all practice together in the Portland High School Gymnasium. There will be two scheduled practices each day except Saturday. Wrestlers will participate in a mix of training and competition. Meet...

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Last Day of Training, Saying Goodbye to New Friends

Posted on Apr 28, 2016 in Bulgaria

Monday was our last day of training in Bulgaria and we finished on a high note. After all the traveling we had been doing, two practices at Vasil Levski with Sport Group Athletic seemed like a slow-paced day. There was plenty of down time between practices and meals for everyone to get their gear organized and rest up for Tuesday’s long travel day. The first practice was from 10 – Noon. We started with a solid warm-up and were pleasantly surprised to see all the improvement our kids had made in their exercises and skills since we arrived. The majority of practice was spent with...

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Sunday Practice and the Bachkovo Monastery

Posted on Apr 25, 2016 in Bulgaria

After having a whole day to rest and relax we decided to hold Sunday morning practice at Vasil Levski. Coach Pavil, of the Sport Group Athletic team at the school and our guide for the whole week, generously offered to help us work on technique from 9-11 am. In addition to his extensive wrestling and coaching experience in Bulgaria, we was a national team coach in Syria and Samoa. He brings together techniques, tactics and combinations from all over the world and shared them with us. The kids went through their first Bulgarian style warm up on their own and are getting a feel for the more...

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A Day at the Spa – History, Rest and Relaxation

Posted on Apr 23, 2016 in Bulgaria

Today was the only day on our trip with no wrestling scheduled so we planned a day at one of the most famous cultural sites in Bulgaria for a history lesson and a chance to test the curative powers of the mineral springs in Hisarya. We drove about 45 minutes north from Plovdiv to the base of the mountains to get to the city which was founded thousands of years ago due to the hot mineral springs found there. Our first stop was the archaeological museum that showed the history of Hisarya from its pre-historic period, its time as a Thracian city, a Roman city and into medievil times through...

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Much Respect for the Bulgarian National Champs

Posted on Apr 22, 2016 in Bulgaria

Today was another beautiful, wrestling-packed day for the Casco Bay Elite team in Bulgaria. We were able to relax at the hotel for a little while this morning as our first practice didn’t start until 10:00 at Vasil Levski. After a great warm up we had an extensive Greco technique session with Coach Pavil. We reviewed and drilled all of the techniques we worked on yesterday afternoon – body locks, underhooks, Russian ties and gut wrenches. Coach Pavil’s technique is the model of simplicity. Everything is about getting in the right position to use your opponents pressure...

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A Long Day but Well Worth It

Posted on Apr 21, 2016 in Bulgaria

This morning came early with a 6:30 breakfast and 7:30 departure for training with the team from Sliven. The drive was 180 km and nearly 2 hours. A lot of wrestlers got some extra shut-eye on the drive but Coach Mike, Coach Jon, Coach Tony and Anthony spend the trip testing each other’s knowledge of the NCAA and world wrestling scenes and talking about the differences in philosophy between the Bulgarian and US wrestling systems. We were greeted at Sliven by an incredibly friend coaching staff and one of the most beautiful wrestling rooms we had ever seen. The room was larger than two...

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