There is a Mindset element to every aspect of the sport of wrestling (life too!) and weight cutting is no different.
Over the past few weeks this is without a doubt the biggest issue on the mind of many of our wrestlers.
We have spoken to many HS and college (even MS) wrestlers who are on the verge of quitting because of a weight class a coach, parent, or they for some reason want to make. And many of the wrestlers who are not on the verge of quitting are losing their passion and love for the sport. It may not be worth the cut this season.
Here are 3 Mindset rules for cutting weight:
Rule #1: Cutting weight doesn't make you a better wrestler
If you focus on cutting weight all season instead of getting better there is a good chance you are actually moving further away from your goal. I understand that cutting some weight may make you or your team more competitive but if that becomes the focus you are NOT going to get much better during the season. And you likely can't afford that either.
Rule #2- Less body fat isn't always better.
Too many wrestlers glorify how low their percentage of body fat is during wrestling season. There is always an optimal point. Everyone may be a little different but less isn't always more in this case. Don't take it from me though take a look at the Wrestling Studies on Average Body Fat of Elite Wrestlers!
Rule #3- If you believe a weight class is best for you then it is!
Your perception is your reality. Once you make a choice you need to treat it and honestly believe that it is the best thing possible for you. If you cannot do this with your weight class, it is time to reconsider.
Read the our previous blog on What Weight Class you Should Wrestle
If you are focusing on your Super 32 record, placing, or wins/losses you are missing the point. This goes for wrestlers who went 0-2, placed or even won the whole darn thing.
Learning and Improvement is the name of the game now. If you won the tournament but didn't/aren't trying to learn from your performance, you are doing yourself a disservice. Meanwhile if you went 0-2 but learned a ton from each match this could be a blessing in disguise.
Winning and Losing are NOT always great indicators of improvement or future success. Stop looking at your record and outcome of this tournament as a measure of the future. Start looking at the technical, mental, and physical areas that you need to develop going forward.
Here are 5 thing you should do immediately after the Super 32 or any tournament/match:
*** 1. Make a list of 3 things you did well and 3 things you want to improve on. This takes the focus off of the outcome and ensures that we are learning from BOTH wins and losses. When you win everything isn't perfect and when you lose everything isn't terribly wrong!
2. Spend time working specifically on your areas of improvement. Thinking about it isn't enough. If you did a poor job finishing your single leg, spend 15-30 minutes a day this week in that position. Stop going through the motions and train with a purpose!
3. Forgive yourself of all mistakes. Remember the past does not equal the future. If you start doubting yourself in the same situations remind yourself/repeat over and over "New Match!" and think about the time you spent focusing on improving this area.
4. Visualize yourself in similar situations you fell short last time. See yourself over and over executing the technique you will hit next time. It is essential that you believe in yourself and your technique going forward.
5. Proceed confidently whether you won or lost. The worst thing about losing isn't the loss itself. It is the potential for lost confidence. If you lost, but learn the lesson and proceed confidently you really won. If you lost and lose confidence in yourself you lost twice. This is why I stress the importance of #1- make a list of 3 things you did well even if you lost!
Make the trip down to North Carolina worth it and learn every lesson you can and proceed with confidence. Learn and improve!
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