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Youth wrestling questions

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by three_bags_full, Dec 19, 2015.

  1. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member

    Couple of questions for those experienced with wrestling.

    Since moving to the Midwest from the Deep South, we've realized youth wrestling is really huge here.

    So, we decided to introduce our five-year old son to it in hopes that it would teach him a little toughness, both physical and mental, humility and discipline. He's a really good kid, if not a bit too hyper, but I really couldn't think of a downside to at least introduce him to the sport through the three-day camp the club held in November. He immediately seemed to like it, so we joined the club. Wasn't too terribly expensive, I didn't think. $165 for the season, which included entry fees into 10 tournaments from December to March.

    The coaches all seem reasonably knowledgeable, and there are several of them, although I don't really know what they're learning at practice, because the practice sessions are closed to parents. You can hang out, just not in the practice room. I've never been involved in an indoor-sport, except basketball, but have never seen closed practices. I understand it from the coach's perspective that parents can be distracting, and the practice room is a bit small. But is that normal?

    Second question is about making weight. I don't know how sold I am on managing my five-year old's weight. I was talking to one of the coaches about it the other day. We'd signed up our son for the tournament at 40 pounds, but he was right at 40 pounds. I figured there was a bit of buffer on either side of the line to take into account things like, you know, eating breakfast the morning of the tournament. But apparently, that isn't the case. These guys were talking about not letting the kids have a snack after lunch on Friday night when they do the satellite weigh-ins around 6:30.

    Is that normal? Or should I look for a different coach, or strategy, or club? Or all three? Just doesn't seem on the up-and-up, to me, I guess.

    We had our first tournament today, one that our club sponsored the local high school. I was amazed that there were more than 400 kids wrestling in the thing. Our son finished 1-2 in his bracket. He lost the first match after being significantly behind and coming back to tie it up at the end of the third period, before losing in the overtime.

    The second kid, he beat kind of handily and then got the pin. In the third, he was wrestling a kid I'd noticed in an earlier match and thought was pretty good, compared to the others. The Bony Brawler, as I call him, got up by about five points on the kid in the second period and then got flipped onto his back and pinned.

    He was pretty disappointed after losing the first match, but handled it way better than a ton of the kids there who were crying and acting a damn fool after losing. He was pretty pumped after winning the second and took the second loss well, I think because we explained to him how well he'd wrestled before he got pinned.

    Overall, I'm pretty happy with the first experience. Any tips?
  2. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    Cutting weight for pre-pubescent kids is bullshit, unless the kid is advised to lose weight under direction of a real doctor.

    And closed practices in a sport in which the kids compete in skimpy skintight uniforms and the coaches regularly will get in body contact with the athletes? No, hell no, what are you doing in there you don't want the parents to see?
  3. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    Spoken like somebody who has never been in a wrestling room. Closed practices aren't all that unusual. I know more about the high school level, where they often have a large number of kids and a small space. It just isn't practical to have parents in there.

    I do agree regarding cutting weight. I've seen some practices at all levels that make me uncomfortable. That shouldn't be happening with a five-year-old.
  4. KYSportsWriter

    KYSportsWriter Well-Known Member

    Closed practices aren't unusual at the high school level, nor are they with the big club team in my area.
  5. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    The number of parents in any youth sport who will actually want to hang around through practices is pretty much minimal. But in this day and age, any coach who bans parents from practices better expect to be asked, "what the hell are you doing in there you don't want parents to see?"
  6. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member

    We have about 80 kids divided in two practice sessions in a fairly small room, so I think that's the reason for the closed practices.

    As for the weight issue, I think the guy was getting more at making sure, if he's close to the upper end, that he weighs on Friday night the same that we register him at. I don't think he means make the kid lose two pounds to get into the next lower class.
  7. dixiehack

    dixiehack Well-Known Member

    When my son took gymnastics, there were no parents allowed in the gym area, but there was an adjacent room with a wide window where parents were welcome to watch. Alternately, there were bleachers on an open balcony one flight up. I was fine being that far removed (it kept parents out of the coaches hair) but if there was no option to observe I wouldn't have been comfortable with it.
  8. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    I would not be concerned about the closed practices. If a coach was trying to get my kid alone some way, that would raise a red flag.

    Wrestling was a great experience for my son. He really gained confidence and learned lots of things, including to be aware of what food you eat. He dropped from heavyweight to 220 and feels a lot better about himself.

    I would hate to be worrying about what a 5-year-old eats so that he can make weight, though.
  9. KYSportsWriter

    KYSportsWriter Well-Known Member

    Pretty sure I got to see your son wrestle a few times last year, Ace.
  10. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    They were down your way a couple times.
  11. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    This one belongs in the Starman eye-roll hall of fame.
  12. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    Weight loss for a five year old? Did I read that right?
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