Saturday, December 16, 2006

A Conversation at The Underground

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Posted Dec 15,2006 7:06 PM

Jason C Brown

I'm amazed!

My respect for wrestlers keeps growing by the day. I'm much more of a BJJ/Judo guy but this is just a sweet art form.So let's talk training. How would you prepare your guy those demands?

Jason C. Brown

Posted Dec 15,2006 7:59 PM


Jason,Is it really that different from any other athlete? You would obviously need to perform a

needs analysis upon the sport and the specific athelte. This is still a speed and power sport and should be treated as such. I think this sport is somewhat unique in that you may optimize some isometric training a little more since this is a large part of the sport.

However, when you look at the movement patterns they are largely made up of strong and powerful hips, a trunk that can rotate not only quickly, but under high loads, and strength in extreme ranges of motion.
Depending upon the time of the meet I would focus on more strength concentrated work earlier on as they will be getting a lot of conditioning during their technique work and practice sessions.

I might add a 1-2 days of sprint work starting with more 400 meter work to develop leg power and work capacity. I think such training is highly underutilized and applicable to most speed and power sports.

Then would use many of the same compound lifts that would be in most sports training. Depending also on equipment availability, time, etc. you could use various implements and strategies, but I don't think you need much more than a barbell and a tough attitude. Wrestlers are amazing athletes, but have similarities to a lot of other sports.

What do you think?

Josh Henkin

Posted Dec 16,2006 7:14 AM

Mike Stehle

The strength training should be kept basic due to the high volume, hard core conditioning and skill work year round. These athletes are already strong and powerful from liftng and throwing other human beings.

I've rolled with some of the strongest humans that I've ever seen who have never touched a weight in their lives. My BJJ/ Judo insrtuctor, a Brazilian National Judo Champ, used to toss me around like a rag doll, while laughing at me.

He once tapped me out by squeezing me until it felt like my head was going to pop off. He did no supplemental training, just lifting, pulling, squeezing and throwing other humans. Like in bjj/judo and other combat sports, supplemental training should be simple and conservative to prevent overuse.

Inseason strength training should be kept to a minumum (2x/week) including prehab/rehab. Like Josh said, work the low volume compound lifts DL, some type of press, pullup variations, and cycle in some kb swings and other complexes in the offseason/preseason. Wrestlers are a unique animal, we also have to factor in nutrition issues.

Some of these guys are not getting enough calories in, so any strength training they attempt is useless. I see this everyday in my high school.


Posted Dec 16,2006 6:29 PM



your statement of your judo instructor goes back to the guy who kicked my a** in high school

he did NO extra work except some calis, still, this is not to dismiss what we do as performance coachesi have a senior, who never made out of districts as a sophomore, junior year he went 1 - 2 in states, this year he is gonna be ranked anywhere from 1 - 3 in the state!

we did it all w/basic workouts and listening to what he needed, attacking weak areas nothing fancy

he beat a kid 11 - 1 in the fall who took 2nd in the state 2 yrs ago

the 1 point was because he cut him lose :)


Posted Dec 16,2006 6:49 PM

Jason C Brown

Awesome discussion guys.

Josh,I do think they're different from other athletes for several reasons:

1. The amount of trunk rotation coupled with extension, under load.You mentioned that already but the only other sport that has that amount of both rotation-extension is Judo.

2. Round back lifting from very low positions.

3. Isometrics, which you mentioned.

4. A very high need for cervical prehab/strength etc...

5. Weight classes.

I agree with everyone, very low volume concentrating on the basics.

I suprised you picked 400m Josh. I assumed you would have picked DB complexes.

Jason C. Brown

Posted Dec 16,2006 8:06 PM


maybe we can say they are similar for other sports, but, regarding training, all of these guys can do very basic lifting allow their wrestling training itself to take care of the rotational training, isometrics, etc.

case in point: I trained 2 x at an intensive camp under a 2 x gold medalist.

He took us into the wt room every other evening and I watched him train, it was horrible, at best.cable cross overs where he was getting thrown around with the weights, totally out of control, rope push downs where he was moving his body all over to press the ropes down

it was insanely horrible...but, I watched him drill...if you saw this drilling, it was freakishly amazing!

He had 2 partners who alternated because he was so intense!he drilled so aggressively and intensely that if you didn't know they were drilling, you would think it was a match!his drilling was done for 20 minutes at an extreme pace!so, despite his horrible strength work, he won the olympics twice and countless world titles.

And, this man was NOT an exceptional athlete - I am tlaking barely any muscle on his frame - he was extremely driven, aggressive and an angry man when he wrestled. It was freaky.

john smith is the man, he is now coach of Oklahoma who has been winning ncaa national wrestling titles regularly since his coaching



Dedicated to your success,

Zach Even - Esh

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