Saturday, October 21, 2017

What Moms Are Saying About Wrestling

December 2, 2012 by  
Filed under News, Parents, Reference

Initial Impressions and Fears

“If we, as parents, truly believe that girls can do anything boys can do, what better way to prove it than by encouraging them to wrestle?”

“Prior to wrestling as a freshman, I had no clue what wrestling was about.  Both my son and I experienced a steep learning curve that first year.  I watched him struggle with “warm ups” (running up and down steps, carrying each other, running laps, etc.).  It broke my heart seeing him cry after he lost every match.  But….   to my amazement he stuck it out and returned the following year.  Wrestling definitely teaches a child to persevere and toughens them up.”

“We had two big concerns for our daughter:  cutting weight and injuries.  But there are a lot of rules that require close monitoring of everyone’s weight, and the wrestlers actually have to eat healthier than they would if they hadn’t joined wrestling.  With injuries, we were worried that our girl wasn’t tough enough, but she surprised us time after time by returning from painful injuries.  And after all that, she’s still a girly-girl.”

Photo by Kathie Kageyama

“My biggest worry, fear and concern was watching my son starve himself in order to make weight.  But in hindsight it taught him to eat nutritiously (and stay away from the “bad” foods — desserts, fatty foods, etc.).  At the same time it forced me to eat more healthy too (and an added benefit is I lost weight while he was cutting weight).  I would say to new parents not to fret too much about cutting weight because in looking back it really didn’t “harm” the kids and it did help my son learn to manage his weight on his own.”

Impact on Studies, Other Activities, and the Student-Athlete as a Person

“Wrestling is arguably the most demanding high school sport.  It is both physically and mentally challenging requiring a mixture of physical prowess, technical skill, discipline, and mental toughness.  Many girls and their families view wrestling to be too brutal, violent, and manly to consider participation. In contrast, my daughter’s experience as a wrestler has allowed her to develop greater self-confidence and self-discipline while allowing her to still remain a “girly” girl.  She has developed close friendships with her teammates. She has also learned to manage her time and priorities well in order to take care of her school work.”

“At first, the long practices took a toll on his academics.  We were getting home late, he was tired and stayed up late every night to finish his homework.  It was a vicious cycle.  But thru the years he learned to manage his time more wisely, work more efficiently and finish as much as he can before going to practice.  Wrestling is time consuming but the exercise seemed to help him focus better and it eventually got to the point where he would feel “pent up” or junk if he didn’t work out.”

“It’s an opportunity for your child to get physically active and learn to be competitive.”

Other Thoughts/Advice from the Heart

“When a wrestler is competing, it’s an individual sport.  But in the hours of practice, cutting weight, overcoming injuries and other adversity, and staying on top of all your classwork at the same time, you really have to rely on your teammates for all kinds of help and moral support.  Wrestling is really a team sport, and Punahou is successful on the mat because of all the team spirit off the mat.”

Photo by Kathie Kageyama

 “Wrestling made our daughter cry, twice.  The first was when she came home after a grueling fitness training session where she had slipped and scraped her shin while running up and down the bleacher steps doing “snakes”.  She was oblivious to the still bleeding scrape, but was moved to tears when she recounted how her teammates were all there to catch her when she slipped.  She loves wrestling because each wrestler trains harder than they ever have in their lives, to get into the best condition they ever have, are guided by the most compassionate and inspirational coaches ever, to compete for the privilege to represent their team for 6 minutes on a mat. Oh, the second time wrestling brought her to tears was in her senior year at the end of the State Championship, “because it’s over”.”

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