T Nation

Weight Lifting for Wrestling

What kind of weight lifting program would you reccomend for High School wrestling? Currently I am doing one of CT’s block cycles and plan on doing a Canadian Ascending-Descending Complex after. What do you think?

I’d imagine you want to train for hip velocity foremost. Agility in all 3 planes of motion, grip strength, develop a good base for your legs as well

The following are some wrestling conditioning specific posts from Eathan Reeves. Coach Reeves is currently the Head Strength Coach at Wake Forest Unversity; however he was formerly the Head Wrestling Coach at the University of Tennessee at Chatanooga where he had a very successful program.

Yours in Fitness,
Coach Sommer

"Best gripping exercise for grapplers…

We found the best gripping exercise for wrestlers is the rope climb. We had 10 hemp ropes 20’ long x 1 1/4" and found these to be the best. We had our wrestlers do five 20 foot climbs each and every workout at the beginning of practice. Great warmup! We would not allow them to hook with their legs or feet. They climbed hand over hand on the way up and hand under hand on the way down. At the bottom they had to touch their butt to the mat first before anything else or we made them go again. We started on the feet though!

If you don’t have ropes then have them do about five sets of chins with a couple of towels, one in each hand. This will get their grip for wrestling. . . .But for wrestling I can’t see anything better than climbing ropes and doing chins for upperbody strength and gripping strength.

In Strength,
Ethan Reeve"

"The best lifts for wrestling…

Out of season we found lifts like power clean, hang clean, clean-n-jerk, front squat, back squat, lunges, deadlift, rdls, sldls, chins, pushups, rope climbs, standing press and push press to be best. We emphasized these lifts out of season and did more partner lifts in-season. We would still lift in-season but just didn’t need to as much because of the partner lifts. Excellent way to train on technique, conditioning and strength. . .

(For in-season training), we have found the best lifts for wrestling to be partner lifts with your technique drills. Work on your takedowns and make sure you get plenty of double leg lifts, front crotch lifts, back crotch lifts, back crotch lifts to Turks, double leg lifts to bottom leg cradles, etc. When working on top get plenty of reps lifting partner in air when he stands up with back lifts to snapbacks, side lifts, back crotch lifts to Turks, back crotch lifts to claws, etc.

When you do alot of partner lifts with your takedowns and top work you will not only get stronger, in better shape for wrestling, and get better at technique. You will also get better at getting your partner to mat when you aren’t able to lift him. There is no better way to get strong for wrestling than doing partner lifts with wrestling technique. Wrestling matches will become easy after training this way.

Safety wise make sure your center of gravity is close to your partners’ center of gravity prior to attempting partner lifts. We use to make our guys do almost 100 various partner lifts throughout many of the wrestling workouts. Shape was never an issue with our team. Make sure your partner gives you the right situation and doesn’t jump up for you to make it easier nor drop hips way down to prevent you from lifting him.

The other positive we found was that when working so much on the finish of the takedown with partner lifts our guys found in matches the takedown setups and penetration steps were much easier to perform in wrestling matches. They just found a way to take the opponent down to the mat.

In Strength,
Ethan Reeve"

Rope climbs were reccomended by Dan Gable too. If only I had a spotter… I use the COC for grip strength, and can almost close the #1 (at first I couldn’t close the trainer).

Does anyone know what the best lift to the train the hips is?

[quote]KombatAthlete wrote:
Does anyone know what the best lift to the train the hips is? [/quote]

There’s no one best - it depends on where your weaknesses are and what you need to train. If you’re lacking in brute strength, lifts like the deadlift or squat and their variations are probably the best way to go. If you need explosiveness, nothin’ beats the power-snatch.


How do you tell if you need explosiveness or brute strength more than the other?