Mukwonago Wrestling Club Minimum Skills Requirements and Checklist

All wrestler must pass minimum skill requirements in order to receive
singlet’s or compete in tournaments.


  1. Get yourself in perfect physical condition. Work hard to build up your body, eating right, and get the proper rest. Even though major away competitions are fun, get to bed early the night before a match.
  2. Pay attention to what the coach says about your opponent and plan accordingly. Plan to use a different initial attack if your opponent has watched you.
  3. Know your opponent’s style and his strong and weak points. Do not allow his past record or build to destroy your confidence. Study him carefully before weigh-in and remain impersonal toward him until after the match.
  4. Specialize in at least one series of moves from each position (top, bottom, standing) and learn at least one other series. Have a desperation take-down move (preferably a throw) available if you need it.
  5. Practice these moves hundreds of times to perfect them.
  6. Know/learn the current wrestling rules for the style you are competing in.
  7. Never let your opponent know if you have been injured, sick or are under weight. It may give him the added confidence that he needs to defeat you.
  8. Never sell yourself short or lose sight of your goals.
  9. For general preparation, do more than what is required by the coaching staff, as well as working hard to do what is required correctly. Make a personal commitment to become the best that you are capable of becoming. Wrestle off-season if there is a program available. Go to all the open tournaments you can.
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  1. Don’t be afraid to lose, have an offensive philosophy going in, and constantly use a proper attack.
  2. Make your opponent wrestle your style. Force the match and keep him off balance by attacking first and continuously.
  3. If you have reach, speed, or balance on a man, use these to your advantage. Mix-up them up in your attack, the odds favor you.
  4. If you are stronger, overpower him. If you are weaker, don’t fight his strength but instead concentrate on perfect technique. Technique will win over strength nearly every time.
  5. If you are in better shape, set a pace he can’t stand but don’t do all the work. Make him lift your weight every time possible.
  6. Keep a cool head and remain poised and confident. Never allow calls by the referees or actions by your opponent or the fans upset your wrestling attitude or technique. Never make the referee mad at you.
  7. Never stop wrestling until the whistle blows. This includes not giving up a defensive move until the referee calls the points.
  8. Do not do anything in a match that you haven’t worked hard to perfect in practice.
  9. Never let your opponent know that you are tired.
  10. Be a “chain wrestler”, always performing a second move if the first doesn’t work. Use holds, which blend together, either as a fake to set-up, or as a follow-up.
  11. A desperation move is risky and should only be tried at the end of the match when you “must” get points. Remember, a loss by one point is as bad as a loss by several points.
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  1. Relax when you are out of range. Being tense takes valuable energy.
  2. Keep a proper body position (stance) when you are in range, especially when you are walking into a man. Don’t stand straight up or with your hands near your head.
  3. Never shoot a leg from farther out than an arms length.
  4. Never shoot a takedown without first destroying your opponent’s stance. Set up all takedowns!
  5. If you tie up, control all tie-ups and fight for the inside position. If you can’t control a tie-up, don’t tie-up!
  6. When moving, step with the foot in the direction you are going. Never cross your feet.
  7. Keep moving your feet in short (about 12″) steps, constantly changing your lead foot and never developing a pattern.
  8. Concentrate on getting the deepest penetration possible when you shoot. Aim a few feet behind your opponent.
  9. Keep your head inside and tight when you step to your opponent’s outside and place your head outside and tight when stepping to the inside of his legs.
  10. Never allow your head to get lower than your hips (overextended), even while you are in motion.
  11. Never allow both of your knees to touch the mat at the same time. Always keep a trailing foot behind for support.
  12. When attacking the legs, never stay on one knee any longer than necessary. Either follow-through or withdraw IMMEDIATELY!
  13. If possible, take your opponent to his back on your follow-through.
  14. When withdrawing, keep to the inside with proper body position and take small steps.
  15. If you are taken down by your opponent, land with your props wide and extended outward. Your arms should be slightly forward, never down and backwards. Also, your hips should be parallel to the mat and lower than your head. Then hit an offensive maneuver as quickly as possible. Takedowns are not awarded until control has been firmly established.
  16. When countering takedowns, stay off of your knees and use your weight to stop your opponent’s motion and destroy his body position.
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  1. MOVE FIRST on the whistle or immediately after assuming the top position to make your opponent counter you rather than attack you.
  2. Either control your opponent’s HIPS, destroy his PROPs or attack his HEAD.
  3. Learn how to ride from both sides.
  4. Stay behind your opponent’s arm pits, unless you are attacking his head.
  5. Make your opponent carry your weight as often as possible.
  6. Ride on your toes in order to have maximum mobility and produce maximum pressure.
  7. Remember you have four props of your own that you must protect in order to maintain a good base.
  8. Keep a wide base and do not fall to your side or drop your head. Keep your hips parallel to the mat as often as possible.
  9. BREAK YOUR OPPONENT DOWN! The closer he gets to the mat, the greater will be your leverage for pinning combinations.
  10. Grab an ankle pick at the shoelaces & get it off the mat as quick as possible. Lift up first then drive forward.
  11. When you chop a man down, cut the arm where it bends and move your outside knee forward in order to prevent your head from dropping. Keep your knee in his butt.
  12. After your opponent is broken down, WORK FOR THE PIN IMMEDIATELY, a man on the defense cannot be on the offense at the same time.
  13. If you get three points ahead, work nothing but pinning combinations.
  14. Nearly always, get perpendicular to pin your opponent.
  15. Use a half nelson to apply pressure on your opponent’s head, place your palm on the head, not the neck.
  16. Keep chest on chest (or back low on chest) with your head up and knees off of the mat while pinning.
  17. Vary your style and technique; do not keep using the same attack unless consistently successful against your immediate opponent.
  18. If your opponent is in the process of reversing and you feel that you are equal or better than him on takedowns, back off and give him “one but not two.”
  19. If you are behind late in the match and feel that you cannot turn your opponent over but can take him down, let him go and work for a takedown (providing the score is close).
  20. Learn to use your legs. Keep your hips on top and parallel to the mat. Keep your weight low on his back with your elbows below his armpits in a cross body ride. Never force legs on your opponent.
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  1. Be ready to move at all times. Watch the referee.
  2. Adapt your referees position to the move which you intend to do.
  3. Move first and keep the top man countering you. Don’t get tied up or lose the offense.
  4. Specialize in a series of moves. You should also have a second series which you know well and go to in emergencies.
  5. Always keep a good base or return to it quickly if you lose it. Listed below are important ingredients of a good base:a. Keep your props wideb. Keep your arms slightly bentc. Keep your head above your hips

    d. Keep your center of gravity over your base

    e. Keep your hips and shoulders parallel to the mat.

  6. Protect your props. When one of your props is being attacked, either remove it completely or get all your weight on it as quickly as possible.
  7. Destroy the top man’s props! One of the most effective ways of doing this is to get HAND CONTROL.
  8. Know the five directions you can go and try to use height to your advantage as often as possible. Remember that the lower and more spread out your base becomes, the less mobility you have.
  9. When turning to face your opponent, use a HIP-HEIST to make your quickest turn.
  10. Never reach back over your opponents back.
  11. Don’t lay on your stomach, come up to your knees by bringing one knee up to the side and pushing back over it.
  12. If you can’t get up off of your stomach, keep your head up and elbows in. Be alert for all nelsons, turn the head away from the half and pull the hand off immediately.
  13. If you can’t get out, get off of the mat and get a fresh start before you get broken down to tied up. Do not do this in an obvious manner or you will be penalized.
  14. Practice all moves with a top man on both sides. If you still have trouble escaping from one side, learn how to change your man over by moving your weight and hips.
  15. Practice with your eyes closed to learn how to “feel” weight shifts.
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AFTER MATCH STRATEGY – (Regardless of a WIN or LOSS!)

  1. Shake your opponents hand graciously and don’t throw your head gear.
  2. Analyze the mechanical errors you made and make a note on where you need work.
  3. Analyze your pre-match and match attitude and mental mistakes.
  4. Do your best to correct them at practice.
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  1. Try to watch what works for others against your opponent, then use them.
  2. Force your opponent to wrestle your style by initiating first.
  3. Plan at least 3 “chain” moves in a row. The first two tend to set up your opponent for the third move.
  4. Learn all moves even though you might never use them. It will help you counter against them.
  5. Stay level headed even under extreme pressure by your opponent. Stress uses up energy very fast and keeps you from being methodical.
  6. Don’t continually use a move that fails more than twice.
  7. Keep your head up on the bottom and try to stay off your knees.
  8. Always keep your elbows close to your body.
  9. Shift your body so you don’t carry your opponent’s weight.
  10. Don’t use moves in a match that you haven’t first developed in practice.
  11. Shoot only if you can reach out and touch your opponent’s elbows and stand with your feet apart and your hands out in front and low.
  12. Fake that you have lots of energy left during a break. Never let on to the referee or your opponent how tired you really are.
  13. Explode off the bottom on the whistle, don’t just move or sit there.
  14. Take direct shots and shift stance continuously to prevent telegraphing.
  15. Don’t hold on to a move that is blocked or can’t be completed.
  16. Practice all out the same as a match, but don’t practice conservatively. You can’t loose at practice so try a lot of moves and technique.
  17. When facing an opponent who knows as many different moves as you do, stick with basic technique and traditional moves.
  18. Be perpendicular to your opponent and keep your head down when pinning.
  19. Always drive the head into your opponent on a takedown, never walk around with your butt up.
  20. The best time to move again is right after a successful move.
  21. Practicing even once a week off season puts you way ahead of those who only practice during the season.
  22. Wrestling has many styles, each emphasizing different techniques to accomplish the same objective. The more styles you learn, the more sophisticated and “rounded” your attack will be.
  23. Fight to the very end, never quit, especially if your opponent is stalling.
  24. Conditioning is a personal responsibility.
  25. You only get out of wrestling what you put in.
  26. Never admit you lost, only that you had a bad day and things will get better. **I don’t know about this one , rlr
  27. Everyone draws a terrible referee occasionally and not much can be done about it.
  28. Don’t expect sympathy when you get hurt, especially in high level matches. Sympathy makes it hurt more and prevents you from concentrating on getting the job done.
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Goal Setting Guidelines

Do you have Championship Aspirations?

I encouraged you to set some challenging, ambitious long-term goals for yourself. If you only set easily obtainable goals, you will never reach your highest levels of achievement. Do not be scared to strive to live your dreams.

To increase the likelihood that you will achieve your highest goals, you must set a variety of smaller goals. Setting numerous short-term goals will provide you with continuous challenges. These challenges will increase your level of motivation and enhance your performance.

It does not matter if you are a beginner, a veteran college wrestler or an experienced coach, goal setting allows you to focus on the areas you need to improve on and objectives that you want to achieve.

Here are some goal setting guidelines below that will help you identify and achieve your highest goals during the upcoming season and the years to come.

  1. Be Specific, setting technique and training goals, as well as performance goals.
  2. Set a variety of goals, including a combination of short, medium and long-range goals.
  3. Make your goals personal. Personal goals are more meaningful because they are what you want for yourself, not what others expect of you.
  4. Make your goals challenging yet realistic. Many of your short-term goals should be easily achievable while others should be lofty.
  5. Post your goals. Write your goals down and refer to them often. Post your most important goals in your bedroom, on the fridge and/or in your locker.
  6. Do not fear failure. If you only set easily obtainable goals, you will never reach your highest levels of achievement. There is no crime in not reaching your goal but only in failing to set one.
  7. Evaluate your goals. Refer to your goals regularly. Check them off as you achieve them and set new goals. You must constantly evaluate where you are and where you are heading.
  8. Design a strategy for achieving your goals. Decide how much and what type of work it will take to achieve your goals. Then design and follow a training schedule that will allow you to reach them.
  9. Make a Commitment to your goals and work plan. Anyone can set a goal. Those who achieve their goals have the discipline to stay focused on their training and the perseverance necessary to work through the inevitable frustrations.
  10. Believe in yourself! There is a big paperweight rock on my desk staring me in the face as I share my thoughts with you. It says if you do not believe in yourself…chances are that nobody else will.

It does not matter who believes in you as long as you believe in yourself. If you wish to excel in wrestling or life, you must have meaningful, concrete goals and you must believe deep down inside that you will achieve them. I encourage you to make a commitment to achieving your highest goals today!

Author Unknown

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Wrestling Moves

Proper stance, movement, penetration, and lifting technique

  • Stance and Movement
  • Penetration Step
  • Lifting
  • Hip Heist
  • Back Arch


  • Double Leg Takedown
  • Finishes from Down on the Mat
  • Standing Finishes
  • Finished With Opponent’s Feet Off the Mat
  • Counters to Double Legs
  • High Single Leg Takedown
  • Finishes When His Leg Is Between Yours
  • Finishes When His Leg Is to the Outside of Yours
  • Finishes When His Leg Is on the Mat
  • Set-Ups
  • Set-Ups for High and Low Single Legs
  • Sets-Ups From Tie-Ups
  • Set-Ups From Fake Shots
  • Snatch Single Leg
  • Set-Ups for the Snatch Single Leg

TakeDown Counters

  • Counters to Singles
  • Counters Before or as He Shoots
  • Counters to the High Single Leg on the Feet With His Head to the Inside
  • Counters to the High Single Leg on the Feet With His Head to the Outside
  • Counters to the High Single Leg Down on the Mat With His Head to the Inside
  • Counters Down on the Mat With His Head to the Outside


  • Finishes as a Continuation of the Penetration Step
  • Finishes If You Get Stuck on the Mat With Both Knees Down
  • Finishes When He is Sprawling Back
  • Finishes With Your Head to the Outside, On Your Feet
  • Finishes When You Are Down on the Mat and He Is Around Your Waist
  • Counters to High Crotch/Head-to-the-Outside Single
  • Underhook Offense
  • Finishes to the Underhook
  • Over-Underhook
  • Finishes With the Over-Underhook
Other TakeDowns

  • Duckunders
  • Fireman’s Carry
  • Near-Arm Far-Leg
  • Set-Ups for the Fireman’s Carry or Near-Arm-Far-Leg
  • Arm Drags
  • Ankle and Knee Picks
  • Bear Hugs
  • Counters to the Bear Hug
  • Front Headlock Down on the Mat
  • Finishes From Down on the Mat
  • Counter to the Front Headlock Down on the Mat
  • Front Headlock from the Feet
  • Headlock
  • Finishes from the feet When Locked Around His Arm and Head
  • Mat Finishes to a Headlock
  • Alternatives to the Headlock If You Don’t Get Your Hips Through
  • Counters to the Headlock

Escapes and Reversals

  • Stand-Ups
  • Finishes to the Stand-Up Once You Are on Your Feet
  • Counters to the Stand-Up Finishes
  • Sit-Outs
  • Hip Heist
  • Switches
  • Counters to Switches
  • Rolls
  • Granbys
  • Counters to the Granby

Breakdowns, Rides, and Pins

  • Breakdowns and Rides
  • Pinning Combinations
  • Nelson Series
  • Finishing the Half Nelson
  • Counter to a Half Nelson
  • Arm Bars
  • Turns Using the Arm Bars
  • Arm on His Back
  • Finishes With His Arm on His Back
  • Near-Wrist Control (One on One)
  • Cradles
  • Counters to Cradles
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Fluids and Hydration – How important are fluids?

Fluid replacement is probably the most important nutritional concern for athletes. Approximately 60% of your body weight is water. As you exercise, fluid is lost through your skin as sweat and through your lungs when you breathe. If this fluid is not replaced at regular intervals during exercise, you can become dehydrated.

When you are dehydrated, you have a smaller volume of blood circulating through your body. Consequently, the amount of blood your heart pumps with each beat decreases and your exercising muscles do not receive enough oxygen from your blood. Soon exhaustion sets in and your athletic performance suffers.

If you have lost as little as 2% of your body weight due to dehydration, it can adversely affect your athletic performance. For example, if you are a 150-pound athlete and you lose 3 pounds during a workout, your performance will start to suffer unless you replace the fluid you have lost. Proper fluid replacement is the key to preventing dehydration and reducing the risk of heat injury during training and competition.

How can I prevent dehydration?

The best way to prevent dehydration is to maintain body fluid levels by drinking plenty of fluids before, during, and after a workout or race. Often athletes are not aware that they are losing body fluid or that their performance is being impacted by dehydration.

If you are not sure how much fluid to drink, you can monitor your hydration using one of these methods.

1.Weight: Weigh yourself before practice and again after practice. For every pound you lose during the workout you will need to drink 2 cups of fluid to re-hydrate your body.

2.Urine color: Check the color of your urine. If it is a dark gold color like apple juice, you are dehydrated. If you are well hydrated, the color of your urine will look like pale lemonade.

Thirst is not an accurate indicator of how much fluid you have lost. If you wait until you are thirsty to replenish body fluids, then you are already dehydrated. Most people do not become thirsty until they have lost more than 2% of their body weight. And if you only drink enough to quench your thirst, you may still be dehydrated.

Keep a water bottle available when working out and drink as often as you want, ideally every 15 to 30 minutes. High school and junior high school athletes can bring a water bottle to school and drink between classes and during breaks so they show up at workouts hydrated.

What about sport drinks?

Researchers have found that sports drinks containing between 6% and 8% carbohydrate (sugars) are absorbed into the body as rapidly as water and can provide energy to working muscles that water cannot. This extra energy can delay fatigue and possibly improve performance, particularly if the sport lasts longer than 1 hour. If you drink a sports drink, you can maintain your blood sugar level even when the sugar stored in your muscles (glycogen) is running low. This allows your body to continue to produce energy at a high rate.

Drinks containing less than 5% carbohydrate do not provide enough energy to improve your performance. So, athletes who dilute sports drink are most likely not getting enough energy from their drink to maintain a good blood sugar level. Drinking beverages that exceed a 10% carbohydrate level (most soda pop and some fruit juices) often have negative side effects such as abdominal cramps, nausea, and diarrhea and can hurt your performance.

What does the sodium in sports drinks do?

Sodium is an electrolyte needed to help maintain proper fluid balance in your body. Sodium helps your body absorb and retain more water. Researchers have found that the fluid from an 8-ounce serving of a sports drink with 6% carbohydrates (sugars) and about 110 mg of sodium absorbs into your body faster than plain water.

Some parents, coaches, and athletes are concerned that sports drinks may contain too much sodium. However, most sports drinks are actually low in sodium. An 8-ounce serving of Gatorade has sodium content similar to a cup of 2% milk. Most Americans do get too much sodium, but usually from eating convenience-type foods, not from sports drinks.

What are guidelines for fluid replacement?

Drink a sports drink containing 6% to 8% carbohydrates to help give you more energy during intense training and long workouts. To figure out the percentage of carbohydrate in your drink use the following formula:

Grams of carbohydrate/serving

——————————————– X 100 = % of carbohydrate in drink mL of drink/serving

For example, 240 mL (a 1 cup serving) of a drink with 24 grams of carbohydrate per serving would have a 10% carbohydrate concentration. Almost all drinks have the grams of carbohydrate per serving and the volume in mL somewhere on the container.

Drink a beverage that contains a small amount of sodium and other electrolytes (like potassium and chloride).

Find a beverage that tastes good; something cold and sweet is easier to drink.

Drink 10 to 16 ounces of cold fluid about 15 to 30 minutes before workouts. Drinking a sports drink with a 6% to 8% carbohydrate level is useful to help build up energy stores in your muscles, particularly if the workout will last longer than 1 hour. Drink 4 to 8 ounces of cold fluid during exercise at 10 to 15 minute intervals.

Start drinking early in your workout because you will not feel thirsty until you have already lost 2% of your body weight; by that time your performance may have begun to decline.

Avoid carbonated drinks, which can cause gastrointestinal distress and may decrease the fluid volume.

Avoid beverages containing caffeine and alcohol due to their diuretic effect.

Practice drinking fluids while you train. If you have never used a sports drink don’t start during a meet or on race day. Use a trial-and-error approach until you find the drink that works for you.

Developed with and licensed from Clinical Reference Systems, Ltd.
Copyright 1997 Clinical Reference Systems

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