Lift for Strength, not for pump
What we mean by lifting for strength instead of pump is that you need to go to the gym with a specific gameplan. Do not go in, randomly pick workouts, and go until you “feel good”. We recommend keeping a journal. Keep track of what muscle group you’re working on, weights, reps, etc. Then the next time you cycle back to that workout, aim to get another rep or add a little more weight and then track it down. This will also help with setting goals and visually seeing your progressions.
Lift with Intensity
Intensity doesn’t mean being those meat heads at the gym screaming at the top of their lungs as they get in those last few reps. It means putting away the phone. Stop talking. Time your breaks. A weight lifting workout should only be 45-60 minutes. Anything more you’re either doing too much or not lifting intense enough.
Compound lifts mean lifts that work several muscle groups at once. This is a more realistic muscle contraction simulation to wrestling as nearly every part of your body will be used in a match. While isolated lifts still have its benefits, majority of your workouts should consist of compound lifts. Bench press, deadlifts, squats, military press, are to name a few.
Explode up, Slow Negatives
Exploding up allows fast twitch muscle stimulation while slow negatives can work on muscle endurance. Not only does this bring benefits to fast twitch and muscle endurance, but also lengthens the set duration. Which according to Jeff Cavaliere of Athleanx, how many reps with a certain weight isn’t the most important aspect, but the duration of muscle contraction with that weight that determines muscle growth. Cavaliere states the set time duration should be aimed at 45-60 seconds.
Stretch before, during, and after
While there has been research stating static stretching, stretching by holding a certain position over a period of time, before and during weight lifting sessions will lead to acute muscle weakening, when we say stretch we have various different meanings when applied to before, during, and after. Dynamic stretching, or stretching through movements, is best to be used prior to a lift and also a great way to warm up the body. During lifting it’s important to keep lose with occasional dynamic stretching motions or short static stretching, just enough to avoid getting too tight and allow blood and oxygen to flow. Finally, after the workout it’s best to spend some time to do some static stretching and incorporate it into a daily routine. While strength is important, flexibility can be often ignored by wrestlers and not worked on. Not only can better flexibility lead to injury prevention but can improve your wrestling ability overall; flexibility allows you to put your body in situations you couldn’t before and also allow you to relax and not contract and waste energy.
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