Re: El Puma's strength conditioning thread
I feel the following posts I copied and pasted from a wrestling website can somehow help us in our pursuit of excellence.
I'll tell you exactly how the Russians train, non stop. They work on a move until its perfect and then move on to the next.
Dan Russell tells an outstanding story about the Russians back when he was over there wrestling.
While trying to make weight and working out, Dan would go work out for hours at a time, then go check his weight. When he originally checked it, he noticed some Russians(youth keep in mind) working on some underhook stuff. Anyways, Dan goes and works out for about 2 hrs and comes back to check his weight and notices that these same two wrestlers are still working on the same underhook series. He goes and works out again for about another 2 hrs, comes back and notices the same two still working on the same moves. He does it a third time and the same thing.
The Russians are completely focused on perfecting every aspect of their skills. They work non stop on the same stuff over and over again.
Americans don't quite have that down. We work on a few things for a few hrs and think that's good. Maybe later on in the week we come back to it and touch back on it. All the while not really even mastering the move. Its all about repetition and muscle memory. Can you imagine trying to get your kids to work on the same move for 6 hrs straight? How about even 1 hr straight? Our kids just aren't focused enoough to work on something for that long. Now if you get them at a young age, keep them from video games, candy, watching tv all the time, then maybe, but not highly likely.
The reason why we can walk, talk and shit so well is because we do it everyday. The Russians walk, talk, shit and wrestle so well is because they do it everyday.
Very well said in terms of the American mentality.
I've been saying this for years to the Canadian kids I coach- creativity and technique are far more valuable than aggression and biceps. I was lucky enough to have a long chat with Zeke Jones a few years ago and he was very much disgusted with the state of American wrestling. Rather than focus on technique and creativity, Americans train to simply "outwork" opponents. This can be effective but you need to be very, VERY strong mentally to do this. Only a few people can have the tenacity to lift and sprint and lift some more 7 days a week without burning out. Also, this tenacity doesn't always carry onto the mat. I know some athletes who work far harder than anybody else in the room during practice but don't have the mental toughness to transfer that into a match where they need to outwork a more skilled opponent.
And as Dirtyholt said, it is part of the culture. American wrestlers hold the Gables, Brands and Slays of their past to almost mythic levels. Yet guys like Kendall Cross and even Zeke Jones are respected yet not held to the same regard. Why? Because they focused on technique more than grunt-aggression.
I also believe that the American Folkstyle breeds this type of wrestler. Folkstyle requires brute strength and non-stop power to be successful. Rather than develop solid freestyle technique and good body positions, many coaches spend more time working cardio and muscles. This is why so many American wrestlers are taught that only the toughest, biggest and strongest wrestlers are successful.
When I think of a prototypical American wrestler, I picture a short, ripped guy with a crew-cut and a square stance slapping heads and hitting power doubles (McIlravy, Brands, Slay, Neal, etc).
Who is the best wrestler in the world right now? I would say Satitev. The guy looks like a skinny basketball player who happened to stumble onto a wrestling mat. His flexibility, creativity and ridiculous attention to detail are what makes him the best. Not how many ropes he can climb up, how many windsprints he can do or how many times he throws up after maxing out his squat.