Monday, April 22, 2013

Downtime...well kind of

For us downtime is a relative term.  Downtime simply means we are not preparing for a tournament in the immediate future.  We are still practicing 4 days a week, and we will probably be working in some private lessons here and there with coach.

So in the meantime, we are doing high school wrestling fundraisers to pay for our trips for next year.  We just finished a club fundraiser (a crawfish boil...yummy) and it was awesome.  We are preparing for a car wash this Saturday for the high school team.  If you live in our area and would like a ticket, please let me know.  They are $10 and that gets you a car wash and vacuum.

The other thing I wanted to write about was the life lessons our high school program teaches our kids.  This past Saturday our city had a city wide clean up day.  Our coach signed our team up for part of the clean up. So, Saturday morning, members of our team were out picking up trash on the side of the road.  One of them even picked up a dead raccoon out of the middle of the road!!! :)

Now that is dedication to your community.  

We all want our children to be successful adults.  Our coaches want these kids to be visible members of the community, and not just for their sports accomplishments.  They want them to be involved in the city and in turn we hope the members of the community want to be involved with us.  We can help each other in so many ways.  The idea that my teenager has other adults in his life to help reinforce these lessons means so much to me.

So, here is to downtime and community!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Next Stop...Virginia Beach

Well the culmination of our Freshman Folkstyle Wrestling season is here:

All of the hard work, extra practice, wrestling camps, weight cutting, healthy eating, 
blood, sweat, and tears were for this weekend.  

My family spent Easter Saturday at a college wrestling camp designed for kids preparing for these higher level tournaments.  No place I would have rather been.  My son wants to wrestle in college.  I will do whatever I can to make that happen.  If that means sacrificing a holiday in order for him to have the opportunity to perform in front of college coaches, so be it.

It seems like just yesterday we were at our first youth league beginner tournament.  I remember thinking how far away high school wrestling was and how we had SO MUCH time.  Now, we are done with Freshman year, leaving for Freshman Nationals, and talking about going to Fargo in July.  We are talking about what  needs to be done to ensure he has the best opportunity to choose the college he would like to attend.  Grades are more important now and our performance at national tournaments matter more than ever.  

I want to wish all the kids from our state the best of luck.  You have many fans here in Alabama cheering you on.  Wrestle hard and bring home some All American hardware!!!! 

Monday, April 1, 2013

Wrestling...not a sport but a lifestyle.

As a wrestling parent, I find it hard to communicate with outsiders about the sport my son participates in.  So many people just don't understand the level of commitment it takes for my child to be able to succeed at a sport that he truly loves.  Best stated by a youth wrestler I know:  "Wrestling is not a sport, it is more of a lifestyle."

For a teenage boy with a raging metabolism to alter his eating style in order to be in the correct weight class is an almost unimaginable thing.  I truly believe that my son's body digests and metabolizes food before he even eats it.  It seems that no matter what he eats, he is always hungry.  However, when it is time for a big tournament, he will cut back his calories, drink only water, and practice/exercise until he is at the proper weight for his tournament.  Imagine a teenage boy eating yogurt for breakfast, a turkey wrap for lunch, and grilled chicken and salad for dinner.  That is all he eats for the day.  If you have a teenager, you totally understand how unthinkable this concept is.  He truly understands how food affects your body and what is good and what is not good for you.

Next let's talk about the practice.  He practices for about 2 hours a day four days a week during the offseason.  These practices usually result in his clothes being soaked and him so tired he comes home and goes straight to bed.  The sessions are two hours of intense conditioning, drilling, and intense live wrestling.  The other days he is running or riding his bicycle to help stay in shape.  He goes to camps and clinics as often as he can in order to ensure that he is staying on top of his skills.  He is already looking at how to put himself in the best position to get a college scholarship for wrestling.  Living in the south, that is not an easy task.

Schoolwork!  He misses a large amount of school due to high school tournaments.  However, then we have to consider national tournaments that he attends.  We must attend these tournaments and do well if he wants to wrestle at the next level (which he does).  So he will miss about 8 to 10 days of school for those tournaments. we are missing school and we must keep our grades up in order to qualify for those scholarships we were talking about.

No wonder so many people who compete in the sport of wrestling go on to be successful people.  If you can manage all of this while in high school, real life should be a breeze.  So the next time you hear someone say their child is a wrestler, remember all of the things these student athletes must do in order to be successful.