When you lose a wrestling match, it’s common to start looking at the physical reasons as to why it happened.
Do I need to get stronger?
Where did my technique break down?
These are great questions to ask. But be careful not to blame all your woes on the physical side of wrestling.
Realize that improving the physical and mental part of your game together will yield results much faster than only working on your technique and strength alone.
Becoming “head stronger” begins with changing your strategy when things get tough in a match or the practice room.
Deliberately work to be headstrong in the practice room - When seemingly it doesn’t matter, it does. Giving up before you have given it your all is a habit. Get serious about pushing yourself beyond what you think you can do. This is an attribute that all elite wrestlers possess. They constantly push themselves beyond ordinary limits.
The more you push yourself the more headstrong you will become. Compete against yourself. Try to beat your personal best. You can always find someone that is coasting through a practice to compare yourself to. That’s a dangerous trap that leads to lazy.
Keep a long-term perspective but think “by 1’s” – Keeping a long-term perspective on your goals means success is built daily, not in a day. Becoming a headstrong wrestler means clawing your way forward one more minute, one more rep, one more takedown, one more point.
When you think you are at your breaking point, tell yourself “one more_________”
Create a mental scrapbook of your past victories – This powerful strategy is paramount to success in wrestling and in life. Create a mental scrapbook of victories large and small that you can call upon when you’re facing what seems to be impending failure.
A good way to do this is to intentionally track your successes big or small. Spend five minutes before you go to bed each night and list some of the things you did well that day.
Another good method is to record all your matches and watch the one’s that make you feel great. Maybe you lost the match but got a great takedown. Watch that part and forget the rest! Watch them over and over until they become a part of your mental scrapbook.
If you will take the time and effort to use these three tips, you will be well on your way to becoming a headstrong wrestler.
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