Wrestling Fitness Training

Wrestling Description

Wrestling is an extremely demanding activity performed primarily by young male athletes. Two opponents attempt to gain physical control of each other and pin the opponent's shoulders to the mat. Wrestling requires skill, quickness, strength and cardiorespiratory conditioning. Headgear should be worn at all times to protect the ears. It is important to warm-up and stretch before participating. To avoid injury, this activity should only be done by experienced wrestlers or with the supervision of a qualified wrestling coach.

Wrestling Warnings

  • People suffering from chronic injuries to the neck, ribs, knees, ankles, elbows, wrists, lower back, or shoulders should receive medical clearance before engaging in wrestling.

Wrestling Risks

  • Weakness from rapid weight-loss practices (not recommended)
  • Knee, ankle, shoulder, elbow or wrist sprains
  • Shoulder problems such as dislocations, rotator cuff damage
  • Bursitis of the knee or shoulder
  • Neck injury, can be crippling
  • Cuts and bruises from inadvertent head butts, scratches or falls
  • Mat burn
  • Swollen ears (cauliflower ear)
  • Skin infections/irritations, from mat and opponent contact

Wrestling Sport-specific applications

  • Competition held on high school, collegiate, national, international and Olympic levels
  • Freestyle wrestling
  • Greco-Roman wrestling
  • Judo
  • Sumo wrestling

Wrestling Equipment required

  • Footwear: wrestling shoes (flat heel with ankle support)
  • Headgear for protection
  • Clothing: should be comfortable, yet tight to prevent interference with movements; most competitors use one-piece wrestling singlets
  • Wrestling mat

Wrestling Applicable substitutions

  • Martial arts
  • Sparring/shadowboxing
  • Circuit-training calisthenics
  • Series of interval medium distance swimming or running sprints

Wrestling Reference sources, organizations and publications

  • U.S.A. Wrestling: 225 S. Academy Blvd., Colorado Springs, CO 80910, (719) 597­8333
  • U.S. Olympic Committee: 1750 East Boulder St., Colorado Springs, CO 80909­5760, (719) 632­5551
  • NCAA: 6201 College Blvd., Overland Park, KS 66211­2422, (913) 339­1906
  • International Amateur Wrestling Federation (IAWF)



Fitness Benefits

  • Cardiorespiratory 4
  • Flexibility 4
  • Muscular Strength 4
  • Muscular Endurance 5
  • Body Fat Recution 2

Fitness Requirements

  • Cardiorespiratory 3
  • Flexibility 3
  • Muscular Strength 3
  • Muscular Endurance 3
  • Coordination/Skill 4

Muscle groups used

Primary muscles: shoulders, biceps, triceps, upper back (latissimus dorsi, trapezius), hip adductors, hip abductors, obliques, abdominals, neck, chest and quadriceps Assistance muscles: hamstrings, calves, lower back (erector spinae), hip flexors and forearms

Energy expenditure

Approximately 0.094 Calories per minute per pound of body weight

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