Wrestlers show mental, physical strength in matches


Diego Gutierrez

Akins wrestlers warm up before a match against New Braunfels Canyon High School. The wrestlers spent many hours a week in preparation before their season started in November.

Alondra Rodriguez, Staff writer

Wrestling is typically not one of those sports that gets a lot of attention. The matches don’t attract huge audiences of cheering fans. And the sport can easily be confused with the drama and silly antics of so-called professional wrestlers of the WWE. Instead, high school wrestlers follow the traditional rules in which they score points by pinning their opponents or pushing them out of bounds.

Besides physical strength wrestlers must possess agility, flexibility and mental toughness.

It takes a lot of effort and hard work to be in wrestling, like any other sport. Having to lose weight in a specific amount of time, staying in the same weight class for the whole season, being mentally prepared for the challenges are just somethings that wrestlers have to go through during the season.

All members of the Akins wrestling team have put in dozens of hours of training, but seniors Sophia Rivera and Kayla Muñoz are recognized by their coaches for going above and beyond in their pre-season preparations.

Rivera has been wrestling since her freshman year and Muñoz has been since she was a sophomore. They both wanted to join wrestling because their family encouraged them and they wanted to stay in shape.

“My older brother, my dad, my uncle — they all wrestled and they encouraged me to — plus I want to stay in shape for volleyball,” Rivera said.

Wrestling is not just about you being physically prepared but also mentally. Losing weight is a big part of wrestling but wrestlers also have to watch what they eat because if they mess up their diet then exercising is useless.

“Knowing what I’m going to put in my body is going to help me in the future,” Muñoz said.

In every sport, its good to stay in shape but in wrestling its different because depending on their weight is depending on which weight class they compete against. Therefore wrestling is more strict about staying in shape than other sports.

Having to stay in a certain weight has its benefits and detriments. Staying healthy and in shape is good for the human body and self-esteem but not eating what you’re craving is difficult, they said. Rivera stated that having to watch what you eat is the hardest thing to do when you have to stay in the same weight class.

“When I come home after practice, I can’t have a pizza, ice cream like I have to watch what I eat and that’s really hard,” Rivera said.