A message from Dan Gable: Wrestling camps are most beneficial when you reach beyond your goals

Dan Gable is the most influential person in the sport of wrestling. His influence as a competitor and coach is still felt today. Olympic champions still aspire to accomplish what Gable has and youth wrestlers, high school wrestlers, college wrestlers and coaches are all influenced by Gable.

Gable provided information for The Ultimate Guide to Wrestling Camps. In fact, the book concludes with a question and answer with Gable about the benefits of wrestling camps and how they can help young wrestlers. Gable provides information that both wrestlers and parents can benefit from, including this from a q&a with the sports greatest legend. Here is an excerpt from Chapter 14 of The Ultimate Guide to Wrestling camps, titled:

Conclusion: A message from Dan Gable – wrestling camps are most beneficial when you reach beyond your goals

Why are younger wrestlers tougher to reach today?

GABLE: Chances are they do not have a single-minded focus and they don’t have to be. Things change and if you don’t make the appropriate changes from a standpoint of doing what you need to do, you don’t keep up with the times. If I coached exactly the way that I trained, then I wouldn’t be keeping updated and modern with training techniques that are better.

There are better mats. You keep up with that. There are better shoes. You keep up with that. There are better machines that are smoother. You don’t do deep squats with heavy weights on your shoulders, which crunch your shoulders down.

Do kids have the same work ethics today as you did back in 1971? Would today’s young wrestlers take on the challenge of running 20 miles to prove a point like you did?

GABLE: It all has to do with what their environment has been before they get to a camp. A lot has to do with the parental environment, people they have been associated with on the grade school and junior high levels.

There was a father one summer, who came in a day early with his son. The Hawkeye Wrestling Club was having a practice. After the practice, I was walking by the father and he said that he had never witnessed wrestling like he watched where Daniel Dennis and Daniel LeClere just went after it for 45 minutes. He said it was a treat.

There are kids who learn things on tapes or the internet, who may think they are already experts. Do you have to tear down all those to help kids reach their potential?

GABLE: It’s kind of like (Olympic gold-medal swimmer) Michael Phelps. He swims unbelievable practices. What he claims he does between workouts is recover, rest, eat good and play a lot of video games. There is a difference between what Michael Phelps does and what I did back in my day, when I’d work a ten-hour day in construction before going to wrestling practice before going home to bed.

What helps you more? Working hard in construction for ten hours or playing video games for six hours?

Want more great advice like this? Then order your copy of The Ultimate Guide to Wrestling Camps today.

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