How to Benefit the Most From a Wrestling Practice
By Zoey Lints
If you want to be a better wrestler, you must learn how to benefit from every practice. Going through the repetition of a practice is impactful. Then, use the information you have learned from practice because it will be game-changing for your wrestling career. Asking coaches specific questions on moves will further your thinking and give you a new perspective. It may seem embarrassing to get help at practice, but it’s only making you better. Lastly, journaling what you have learned after practice gives you the option to never forget that skill. This may mean doing more, but you’re a wrestler.
Wrestlers do more, we work for what we want.
Choose a partner wisely
As coach says “partner up”, here are some thoughts you should be having:
“Will this partner help me get better?”
“Does this partner work hard?”
“Will I be challenged with this partner?”
You came to practice to get better, so why be with a partner that doesn’t put effort in? With a highly skilled partner, you are going to learn more moves and be put in different positions. Being with someone that is low skilled or not trying will not benefit you. While helping newer teammates is very important, you should also spend some time at practice with a partner who will push you to be better.
Communicate with your partner
Your partner needs to give you a good reaction during practice. If you are shooting and your partner falls over a little too easily, that’s not the feel you are looking for. Getting the right pressure back is important. So if your partner doesn’t do this, say something.
During a drill you may want to ask if your partner can give more pressure, a more realistic feel, or do something specific. When your partner does a good move, tell them. This grows their confidence and they certainly deserve recognition.
It doesn’t matter if you’re the best wrestler in the room, you can still be the hardest worker in the room. Live by the saying “do one more.” Don’t let anyone outwork you, this will also give you more confidence during a match. If the coach tells you to do ten shots, do eleven. When you are doing more at practice then at an actual match you’ll know you are more than ready. This also creates a great habit for other situations in your life.
Ask questions at practice
When you are learning and drilling moves, asking questions will help you. Ask your partner or ask a coach. Furthermore, you won’t learn anything if you don’t absorb the information you obtained from the question asked. Use the information you have learned on the mat.
The smallest thing you are unsure of, such as where your hands should be placed, can make a huge difference. This is because a wrestling move is built of many components including correct timing, angles, and, of course, the different positions. If unsure, ask; and if certain, also ask. You may think you are doing the move correctly, but in reality, are not.
Not only should you be asking your coaches, also ask your partner to share some of their moves you haven’t learned yet. If your teammate hits a move during live wrestling that interests you, ask about it. This will widen the variety of moves you will be able to do in a match.
After you learn a move, writing it in a journal is important. You can look over the move whenever you need to and practice the steps of the move. During your wrestling career, you may feel weaker in some positions. In this case, you may look back to the journal and look at what you can do in this situation. Either before you go to practice or before drilling at home, look over the journal to practice specific moves or to think ahead of what moves you could hit.
How to journal
You can journal any way you want, but make sure all the key components of the move are written down. The most useful way I have been journaling is to first write down the name of the move. Then, write down the main steps. Next to each step, write down the details of each step. I can guarantee that this will be helpful later on when you review the moves.
It’s easy to do the minimum at practice, but to achieve greatness you must put in maximum effort. As you continue to do this, you will see the growth within yourself. More shots will be made, more technique will be displayed, and you will be a better wrestler.