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Note: The following column appeared in the May issue of Wrestling Insider Newsmagazine. Click here or call 888-305-0606 to subscribe to WIN. Use Discount Code “May” to get a print copy of WIN’s annual Awards Issue.
Also, WIN will be publishing a special digital issue in June and look for WIN’s next printed issue in July.
By John Klessinger
Last month I posted resources that we could use to better ourselves during the Coronavirus stay-at-home protocol. Admittedly, at the time, I didn’t believe this was going to continue indefinitely. I figured it would be a few weeks and things would resume back to normal. It is looking like we will be in the same situation for a while. There are speculations all over the place on how long we will be restricted and told to keep a safe distance from others.
I still know and believe this is a blessing. More accurately, it’s an opportunity to focus on being better and a chance to hone in on our wrestling skills without daily distractions. As a coach and parent, the stay-at-home protocol has allowed me to spend more needed time with my family. I have had the opportunity to teach my kids how to work out properly with the correct amount of intensity. Compared to most, I am lucky. I have an arsenal of equipment at my house. I know many of you do not.
The past month has also given me time to think about ways to make my team better … both now and for next season. Part of this has been to reach out to experts in the wrestling world and pick their brains on what we can do right now to prepare for next season despite not having a wrestling mat or gym. I have been following these people during the COVID-19 quarantine and they have been putting out some great stuff to help wrestlers stay active, focused, and ready for next season!
Here are their thoughts:
From Dustin Myers — @coachmyers_gutcheck — the Ohio Regional Training Center Strength and Conditioning Coach and owner of the Old School Gym:
• TUT (Time Under Tension) Circuit: 5 rounds
• Chin-Ups – 5
• Push-Up – 10
• Squat – 10
In the TUT Circuit, all reps performed in a 5/5/1 tempo. During a Chin-up, hold five seconds at the top, go down (negative) on a five-count, then repeat four more times. In a push-up, go down on a five-count, hold for five seconds at the bottom, push back to starting position. You will do the same for a squat as the push-up. Down five, hold five, and then stand.
Why? – One of the best ways to gain strength while training at home with limited equipment is by increasing the Time Under Tension of bodyweight exercises. Time Under Tension (TUT) refers to the time it takes to complete a rep. Each rep places emphasis on the three phases of muscular contraction: Eccentric (Negative, or lowering on the way down), Isometric (pause at the transition), and Concentric (on the way up).
From Nick Purler — www.facebook.com/nickpurler — the former NCAA All-American from Oklahoma State and co-owner of the Purler Wrestling Academy:
What? – Break down five or six of their very close matches from the season. Identify strengths and weaknesses. Develop a game plan moving forward to change and fix weaknesses. Study 10 close hard-fought college/Olympic matches. Analyze their performance compared to yours. Determine ways you can mirror those attributes when you wrestle. Three times a week, work stance-and-motion 15 minutes and 100 burpees in eight minutes or less.
Why? – Until you learn how to coach yourself, you will never reach any level of greatness in any endeavor. Our objective is always to get the athletes to learn how to coach themselves. A coach cannot make you great at wrestling. They only play a small, although very significant part.
You will never reach the top until you learn to coach yourself and study yourself and then attack those strengths and weaknesses.”
From Ryan Loder — @apex_wrestling_academy — the former NCAA All-American from Northern Iowa and owner of the Apex Wrestling Academy:
What? — Apex Wrestling Academy Full-Body workout
Super Set #1 (Go through each lift 3 times in order)
• Clap Push-Ups x 30
• Chest to Knee jumps x 20
• Chest to Bar Pull-Ups x 10
• Mountain climbers x 30
Stance and Motion – 6 min.
Water Break – 2 min.
Super Set #2 (Go through each lift 3 times in order)
• Release Push-ups x 25
• Split Jumps x 20 each
• Clap Pull-Ups x 8
• V-ups x 20
Stance and Motion – 6 min.
Jog 1/4 mile
Why? – Change brings opportunity. Get a leg up on your competition with these at-home workouts and be ready for next year.
From Kyle Martin — www.usapawf.com — the Team Pennsylvania National Coach and USA Gold Certified Coach:
What? – Social Distancing/Quarantine Wrestling Workout
1. Dynamic Agilities (rolls, butt kickers, jog in place, high knees and other basic agilities);
2. Shadow Wrestle (3 minutes – active hands and feet);
3. Shadow Wrestle – 20 Down Blocks (Circle up off the Down Block);
4. 20 Down Block – Penetrations Steps (Down Block – explode hips to Penetration Step);
5. 20 Sprawls (Circle up from the Sprawl);
6. 20 Sprawls to Penetration Step (Sprawl – circle to a Penetration Step);
7. Active Rest (20-second periods: Fast Feet / High Knees / Hops);
8. 10 Sprawls and 10 Push-Ups (Sprawl, 10 Push-Ups, circle up to stance);
9. 10 Penetration Steps and 10 Hops (Penetration Step, 10 Hop-Knees to chest-back to a stance);
10. Smile, wash your hands, and embrace the adversity.
Why? The workout is beneficial for a few reasons.
First, it provides some semblance of normalcy, even at a very small level. It gets athletes back to the basics: footwork, stance and motion, level change, and other basic skills for wrestling.
It also gets the body moving and helps to improve an athlete’s mood and attitude. The workouts allow the athletes to begin focusing on their next goal, next competition, whenever that may be!
(John Klessinger is a teacher and wrestling coach at South River High School in Maryland. You can follow him on Instagram @coachkless and like his Facebook page “Coach Kless”.)