When writing any training program, it is important to consider changes based on when the athlete needs the skill the most for their next training event. For example, intermediate and advanced athletes can get into competitive cardio fit in no more than 3 weeks; There is no point wasting valuable training time / energy on this at the beginning of the summer, unless you are training for summer competitions / travel teams. While you can get into cardiovascular fitness in 3-4 weeks, it takes a lot longer to build real physical strength. Unbalanced programs focus on running your athletes to death during the time they might be lifting weights and physically getting bigger / stronger. A good preseason weightlifting program for wrestlers will spend most of their time strength training with only the last few weeks working directly on hard cardio to get the maximum benefit from all the attributes needed to compete.

Our program is divided 12 weeks (+1 week off) before the start of the wrestling season into blocks of different types of training to meet the needs of the wrestler as the deadline approaches. The first 4 weeks of our program are designed for power and size, the second 4 weeks focus on strength conditioning, and the last 4 weeks for endurance and cardio. While every four weeks you will focus on a specific attribute, you should include the others as well, but as a smaller percentage. For example, during the strength conditioning cycle, a small percentage of power exercises should also be included in the program. If you don’t, you’ll still be in good shape for the season, but you may have lost some of your hard-won strength in the beginning.

During each week, lift weights twice a week (for example, Monday and Wednesday) and add a strength conditioning day (Friday). For weightlifting sessions, choose compound movements such as the squat, bench, deadlift, and / or clean to test the highs throughout the program. For these core exercises, cycle 5, 3 weeks and then 1 rep schemes followed by props for rep work (8-15 reps). During the power phase, choose accessories to help build the particular exercise for your next rep max. During the strength and endurance conditioning phases, choose accessories to help strengthen the muscles used for particular fighting movements. Keep records of both power moves (individual and rep) and accessory lifts. In our program, we use Friday as our strength conditioning day and this is done in our fight room. This day is used to develop strength and speed during wrestling match. When it is right before a tournament, this day is sometimes used as an additional fight day for more conditioning or to reduce weight. All sessions, whether weightlifting or conditioning, should last no more than 90 minutes.

For lower body weightlifting, choose a compound exercise to perform first, preferably a variation of some type of squat or deadlift. If you follow a 5, 3, 1 rep scheme, choose one type of squat (back squat, front squat, or box squat) for 5 and 3 rep weeks; Choose a type of deadlift for a maximum of 1 rep. We do this because most of our lifters are young (10-18), have less developed rear chains, and single rep max effort squats represent a high degree of complexity / danger (more than deadlift). When performing one rep max, continue to do sets adding weight until max is reached, however, try to avoid total failure / losing a weight. When working in the 3-5 rep ranges, do 3-5 sets. Once you have finished the main compound lift, continue with 3-4 accessory lifts for 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps. Good accessories include exercises to target your hamstrings, glutes, lower back, and quadriceps. Some examples are: butt lift, stiff-legged deadlift, dumbbell deadlift, Romanian deadlift, good morning, push-ups, push-ups, belt squats, reverse hyperspaces, back lifts, and sled pulls. Finish your lower body sessions with abdominal work preferably performed for 8-12 reps holding weights whenever possible.

For upper-body power, choose the bench press as the exercise that you will work your best to test new strength. Choose bench variations for 5- and 3-rep schemes such as the floor press, table press, rack press from different heights, and even the curved bar. Choose a second type of press for additional triceps work as your first accessory. Choose accessory lifts to help build the most lagging parts of your bench at most and perform 3-4 sets of 8-12 reps. For example, if you lose your maximum bench at the top of the press, work this move with reps on the table and rack presses. If you lose your max bench at the bottom of the elevator, the chain push-ups, the dumbbell bench press, the floor press, and the curved bar bench press will help. After the pressure accessory, work your lats / back for 4-8 sets of 8-12 reps with all types of pull-ups (+ weighted), lat pull, bar, and dumbbell rows. Beyond this, choose 1-2 other accessories and perform 3-4 sets of 8-15 reps targeting your shoulders, traps, neck, and / or arms. Grip is also extremely important to the wrestling mat and should be trained at the end of each upper body session (and never before).

If you train three days a week, two days will be weightlifting and the third will be a strength conditioning day. During the power phase, do another weightlifting session in the gym this day focused on pulling / back chain, neck / upper back, and core heavy. During the strength, endurance, and cardio phases, train in the fight room with light or bodyweight exercises for high reps. Try to choose exercises that strengthen / enhance specific movements; for example, taking shots against the resistance of the band. It also includes numerous body lift exercises, for example shooting to knock down and then lifting your partner up and carrying him 10 feet instead of finishing the shot. Perform 5 to 10 repetitions of this. Lightweight or band repetition exercises superset with wrestling exercises. For instance). Good morning solo band and kettle bell swings superset with buddy carry and / or takedowns after lower back and hips are pre-exhausted. Exercises like sled pulling, farmer’s walk, hitting a tire with a mallet, and flipping giant tires are great for this type of workout.

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