Mat wrestling and more wrestling

Posted on Mar 17, 2010 in Practices, Technique

Whereas Monday’s practice focused on wrestling from the neutral position, this evening’s practice was dedicated to wrestling on the mat. We did some good drilling but spent most of our time playing games and wrestling live.  Practice started with a warm-up then relay races and as a special treat, Pat Cormier and Evan Michalski, two of our high school wrestlers, joined in the fun.

We continued with a drill that reminded wrestlers to get hand control, keep their head up and elbows in right off the whistle. Then, we took a new approach and had the wrestlers themselves demonstrate stand-ups and stand-up counters. I was pleasantly surprised at their enthusiasm and how well they showed each move. It went so well that I plan to let the wrestlers demonstrate technique in every practice we conduct in the future – youth and high school. We finished working on escapes with a game of King of the Mat.

After a short break we reviewed our main breakdowns again with kids demonstrating. They showed crossface-near ankle, tightwaist-far ankle, spiral and far ankle-far knee breakdowns and then we practiced each with partners. We reinforced this drilling with an extended session of live wrestling from the mat.

One of my favorite moments of the season was late in the live wrestling session when suddenly our younger wrestlers were asking to wrestle with teamates who were much bigger and older than them – teammates they rarely wrestled with all season. The joy and friendship I saw in that moment made me appreciate how far we had come as a team.