Local youth wrestling clubs are one of the best ways to introduce kids to the sport of wrestling. I believe local youth wrestling clubs provide a higher caliber of competition than the little guy wrestling offered in the elementary schools. I have seen friends kids do real well in little guy tournaments, then come to the “big leagues” of club wrestling tournaments and find it much more difficult to win.
The other thing about local wrestling clubs vs little guy, is that the numbers of athletes in the clubs are often far larger. This is very helpful to wrestlers who are in a weight that there are fewer numbers of kids. It is difficult and potentially dangerous for a child to wrestle someone who is even 10 pounds heavier than themselves. So having a larger pool of kids to pair up greatly helps reduce this issue.
Another advantage of club wrestling is that the season is longer and there are far greater tournament choices to attend. Little guy wrestling tends to only last around one month, while club wrestling lasts often 4 months. There is also, what is referred to as “off-season or pre-season” tournaments all over the states between June –December. So technically, you could wrestle every month in the year if a person wanted to.
Just a note: local clubs are sanctioned by either USA Wrestling or AAU Wrestling. Some clubs are sanctioned by both groups. People have preferences on which association they like more, for one reason or another. But both offer tournaments in all styles of wrestling, ie: freestyle, folkstyle or Greco. Bottom line, both associations goal is to promote the sport of wrestling in our youth, they just have different ways of doing so. Even if your club is an AAU club, that doesn’t prevent you from wrestling in a USAW sponsored tournament, as long as you have purchased a USAW card. Cards are good for one year. Your wrestling gear, particularly singlet color is determined by the association’s rules.
- David Durham, Ohio State is a Special Place (escoutroom.com)
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