The one word that starts with a W which determines your success in wrestling more than anything else.
Most would think the word would be WORK.
It is not.
It is WATER.
You see, EVERYONE who wrestles works.
But not everyone who wrestles uses water properly.
WORKING is a given.
If you are unwilling to work wrestling will direct you to another sport in a hurry.
Working hard and harder and harder is not the answer.
There reaches a point where you just can’t work any harder.
There is a law of diminishing returns.
Everyone is looking for an edge, trying to get make up the difference between good and great.
I believe a wrestler’s greatest opportunity to make up that difference is with WATER.
They say simplicity is pure genius.
It can’t get any simpler than water.
Have you ever seen a great wrestler wrestle like garbage?
I can guarantee it was because he did not have the proper amount of water.
Would you agree that wrestling is about reaction time?
Getting your leg back when your opponent shoots.
Hitting a shot when the opening occurs.
Did you know that 75% of your brain is water?
Did you know that the brain reacts 90% slower when it doesn’t have the right amount of water?
Do you know 80% of your strength is lost when you are dehydrated?
Did you know that it takes 48 hours to rehydrate?
But I need to make weight – so I have to restrict my water intake right?
Absolutely – completely 100% wrong.
If you can not make weight without drinking a massive amount of water you are quite simple wrestling at the wrong weight.
Did you know the way you lose weight is by drinking a large amount of water?
It won’t happen initially as 16 oz of water will add a pound to your overall weight.
But your body will be at full strength and you will naturally lose 80% of any water that you drink without exerting any effort.
Your body will operate normally, the water will cause you to eat less and will flush your system.
I have spent years trying to make up the difference in a wrestler’s performance. To make up that one point which changes that one loss into a win, which could make the difference in winning a state championship or not.
And the conclusion I have come up with is TO WORK SMARTER NOT HARDER.
Everyone nowadays is doing 2-a-days.
Everyone trains like a mad dog.
Less than 5% of wrestlers make weight properly.
That is where the difference can be made up.
So how do you use WATER to get better?
Let’s start with practices.
Most wrestlers, unfortunately, use practice to lose weight.
You need to use practice to GET BETTER.
Drink water when you first get up in the morning.
Drink water throughout the day.
Drink water before practice
Only practice in shorts and a tee shirt.
No heavy clothing, no sweatshirts, no sweats etc.
Shorts and a tee shirt.
Drink water during practice.
Drink water after practice.
Convert ALL of your liquids to water.
Soda to water.
Juice to water.
Gatorade to water.
Pedialyte to water.
I don’t like water.
You don’t like winning then.
You said you would do anything to win.
Learn to like water.
There are no other beverages. Period.
If you want to make up the difference you start here.
If you really want to get serious, research the benefits of high PH Alkaline water and only drink that.
There should never be a time where you are dehydrated. EVER.
This one simple adjustment will be the BIGGEST difference you can make that will separate you and your opponent.
And 50 additional inspirational wrestling stories can be found in:
Capturing the People and Culture of the Greatest Sport on Earth.
All of JohnA Passaro’s published works are available at these fine online stores: