Coaching & Parenting Tips

We created an e-book with all of our research from the last few years on parenting high-level athletes. While none of us are perfect, these are the guidelines that we've found to help wrestlers advance far in the sport while also preventing burnout so that they enjoy themselves and return year after year.

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This is the Team Hammer Parent Handbook. It will keep you informed about all of our rules and guidelines so that there will be less stress. It has information on expectations from parents and wrestlers as well as Discipline procedures, the Absence Policy, Gear Order info, and Team Moms' Contact Info so that you can be informed all season on what is happening.

Virtual Trainer

The following videos are the future of training. They utilize technology so that wrestlers can train at home on the days that they don't have practice. These videos are designed to decrease reaction time by training the eyes to memorize certain movements associated with your opponents' attacks.

All you need is a Smart TV or a computer capable of playing YouTube videos and a few feet of extra space to move around.

Check out our blog post describing the Virtual Trainer in detail.

https://www.teamhammeracademy.com/single-post/2018/09/30/Virtual-Training-is-Here

And here's our Beginner video with motion cues that tell (and show) new wrestlers exactly what to do. It's meant to be like a video game, where they have to master this first level and then they can move on to the next video (same video but with no cues).

And here's some footage of two of our wrestlers using it in a living room to show how easy it is to use:

Beginner Guide

Below we've included our favorite videos from YouTube that describe the different positions, rules, and some basic moves. We've also included videos from some high-level athletes and coaches in wrestling, Jordan Burroughs, Brandon Slay, and Henry Cejudo.  All three are Olympic champions and Henry Cejudo now fights in MMA and is a UFC champion.

Video #1 and #2 do a great job of explaining a lot of the Folkstyle rules. The instructor is John Smith, 2 x Olympic gold medalist and current head coach of the Oklahoma State wrestling program. He currently holds the U.S. record for most Olympic and World Championship gold medals at 6.

3.) This video does a great job of explaining the rules using actual match footage. The only thing you don't have to worry about is a riding time point. That rule only applies in college.

4.) The below video, again, explains the basic rules and uses a partner to demonstrate what he's talking about. The more time you see and hear the rules from different instructors and coaches, the more it will sink in and become natural.

Olympic Champion and Head USA Freestyle Coach Brandon Slay describing how important it is to fall in love with the sport and build positive relationships in the beginning. It's not about winning. That comes later after years of hard work. The most important part is getting addicted to hard work.

Before he was an Olympic Champion, Jordan Burroughs talked about the sacrifices he made and the amount of hard work that it took to make it to the elite world level. While this level of wrestling is extremely far away for most youth wrestlers, getting them to see the kind of sacrifice and dedication it takes to do anything great in life will only help them in anything they choose to do.

This video describes Henry Cejudo's upbringing and how he found wrestling at the age of 11.  *Disclaimer: he talks about a large weight cut for the Olympics. WE DO NOT CONDONE WEIGHT CUTTING FOR KIDS!!!!! In fact, even at the Senior Level, weight cutting is becoming less and less important. Both Kyle Dake and David Taylor won a World Championship by GOING UP A WEIGHT CLASS!!!  But besides that, this video is amazing. Henry Cejudo came from extremely humble beginnings, and worked his butt off to become an Olympic champion at the age of 20, and now is also a UFC champion.

Our final video is of the 2018 Who's #1 Ultimate Highlight from this past year. It showcases how hard high school wrestlers work and compete in order to try and gain that #1 ranking in the country. Towards the end you'll even see Devon Winston from Park Hill, representing Missouri after he fought hard for his win. This is the pinnacle of wrestling for high school athletes and should be a long-term goal for youth athletes. 

You don't deserve anything. You go out and earn it. So get in the room and grind.