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The Best Exercise for Wrestling

Everyone always asks about the best exercise for wrestling.

My answer is usually “it depends” because everybody is different. The basics will work for everyone but it is worth it to make them better for the individual.

My question back is always “What is your goal with exercising?” and then they always answer with some form of bigger, stronger, faster, move better… whatever it takes to become the best wrestler.

The goal shouldn’t be to build a super wrestler, rather just a well rounded athlete that is very prepared for wrestling. Each athlete is at a different place with their athletic qualities and physical development, therefore they probably need some different exercises.

If you have ever played a sports video game, think of the attribute bars that go from 0-99, those can be for the athletic qualities of each wrestler. Certain exercises will increase some bars more than others.

Let’s choose squats. Back squats will increase the strength bar mostly while zercher squats would increase the movement bar. Both will develop squatting muscles but will one favor a different athletic quality. If somebody mostly needs strength, use back squats and for somebody who mostly needs movement, choose zercher squats.

So which is a better squat for wrestling? It just depends on the wrestler and what they need.

Common postures will come with most wrestlers, so there seems to be a few exercises that just work great for most people. But that is due to the stress of wrestling, it is not about trying to build a super wrestler from and having an exercise for it.

Wrestle and that will influence your muscles and structure. You will have certain athletic qualities from genetics and how you wrestle. Find the ones you are missing and where you can fill the holes. Get strong where you are weak and practice what you aren't already good at.

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