21 January, 2016

Wrestling bits and pieces

So, two wrestling-less blog posts in a row and it's time for more wrestling.

1. Female wrestlers

CAJ this year has five female wrestlers. It's only the second year that they've had girls wrestling with the team. It's a nice little team and they've done well, winning a few medals. I love watching them. Though it can really give them a bad hair day!

When I first started going along to wrestling meets it was a bit of a shock to see girls and guys wresting. This doesn't happen often, but some of the teams fill their team's lighter ranks with girls if they don't have a boy. It isn't truly fair because girls simply have a different muscle:fat ratio. One of the team-dads struck up a conversation with one of the girls in the guys league who is particularly good. She gives as much as she gets, she's incredibly determined. She said that she used to wrestle in a girl's league in the states and is finding wrestling against guys much harder.

A couple of our wrestlers have been up against girls this season. At least once they've declined, but usually they've gone out and done their thing. My son hasn't had to make such a choice and I think he'd find it uncomfortable. If he had sisters, it might be easier. CAJ doesn't force our guys to wrestle girls, it's their choice and their encouraged to think about it and talk about it with their parents.

Please note: Our girls train in the same room as the boys, but not with them. In fact they haven't wrestled guys at all.

2. Another wrestler in the family

I mentioned back here that our youngest has been training a bit with CAJ's only middle school wrestler this season, to give him someone his own size to train with. On Saturday we were approached with an offer to allow our 10 year old to have some matches next Saturday. Apparently there are some other elementary-aged kids around in the international schools who are keen and want to have a go. We'll see how he goes. 

It's a little hard to believe that my youngest (in orange here) is
getting into competitive wrestling already, yet he's been watching for
four years now and learning from his brother all sorts of things 

on the side. So I guess it's time!

But it is the start of what is going to be a dilemma for the next 13 months: two boys wrestling in two different places at the same time. This time we're sticking with the high school team, but next season, when our youngest will, as a middle schooler, be a full member of the team, we'll be split across the two teams for the four or so middle school wrestling tournaments. A little bit of a pity, because it will be our eldest's last season at CAJ, but there is always video.

3. Last night

Last night we had two duals at CAJ. That is, two teams came to CAJ and faced off against our team. They work through all the weight classes from the lightest to the heaviest. If one team has a wrestler in a weight class and the other doesn't, it is a forfeit, and costs as many points as a pin. At the end of the dual, teams win on how many points they've been awarded during the dual, depending on how matches were won. Each team can only put up one wrestler for each weight class. Though there are often "exhibition" matches where extra wrestlers, if they are a similar weight, get to have a go. We were up against two strong teams. 

Our son was up against a regional champion* from the last two years. We knew it would be a hard bout, but it finished even faster than we imagined, with our son being rolled across the mat five times by the legs (painful) in the second minute of the match. He was disappointed, but gracious in defeat. Ever the thinker, he's analysing it and figuring out what to do next time he meets this guy. I'm so encouraged that he's not a deflated balloon!

This is what we sat on on Saturday, all day. The different between
this and most "bleachers" is that each seat had a radiator underneath.
Which was nice for the first little while, but it soon got very hot.
My sheepskin was not just soft, it was a nice insulator too!

The second match was better. Our son won, but I felt a little disappointed because he actually pinned his opponent, however it was just after the time ended for the first round. He'd scored so many points on the other guy, that the match ended before he could get another pin in. I'm sure the other guy wasn't so disappointed. It is slightly more honourable to not lose by a pin!

The thing that happened last night is that the coach wasn't there. His first baby was born yesterday, so that's a pretty good excuse! David's officially the assistant coach, but I guess we've been thinking of him more as the coach's assistant. He has no formal training, though he has carefully watched and learned for the last four years of our son's wrestling. He's also a good teacher, which has overlap with good coaching. Last night he was the only coach, though the team rallied and took turns sitting with him in the coaches corner during bouts giving perhaps better advice?

4. Bleacher bottom

Now we don't call them "bleachers" in Australia, what are they? Stands?

I'm getting sore from sitting on hard benches for hours on end. For the longer matches I take a small sheepskin to sit on that gives some cushioning, but it doesn't help with no back to lean on. Though I'm not the one out on the mat, I have sore muscles just from sitting!

*Far East is the region. It is a US military term for this eastern Asia area where they have military bases, encompassing mostly Japan, Korea, and Guam. I guess it is mostly a military schools comp, but schools like CAJ are given special invitations to take part. The Far East competition for wrestling is coming up in three weeks and they're going to Korea.

1 comment:

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