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Thread: US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

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  1. #1

    Default US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

    I'm sure that some are going to jump in with that title and note that we had 2 golds this year. But, that was the first time the US has had more than 1 gold since 1996. I know in 1972 we had 3 golds and it's happened other times as well. The US isn't faring as well in olympic wrestling as we used to why? I will suggest a couple of possible reasons and see what others of you think:

    1. The collapse of the Soviet Union--instead of just one entry from the combined Soviet Union, now you have multiple entries from many different republics.

    2. We all know that our folkstyle isn't the greatest preparation for freestyle wrestling in light of the significant differences. Question: Has this difference gotten larger over the past 30 years?

    3. Could MMA be tapping guys that might have continued their wrestling careers in freestyle but decided to make more money in MMA? Bubba Jenkins showed some freestyle promise early, but made the quick jump to MMA.

  2. #2

    Default Re: US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

    I think all three of your reasons are valid. I would also add that the evolution in the match length and some of the rule changes have resulted in less importance and emphasis on conditioning, which seems to be our hallmark.

  3. #3

    Default Re: US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by oldfart View Post
    I think all three of your reasons are valid. I would also add that the evolution in the match length and some of the rule changes have resulted in less importance and emphasis on conditioning, which seems to be our hallmark.
    Depends on the tournament, maybe, but at the Olympics conditioning was hugely important due to the matches being wrestled close together. Big name guys- Urishev, Aldatov, Gayzumov, even Americans Lester and Pireziwho (spelling?) looked very exhausted. From personal experience, I haven't wrestled much folkstyle but I found freestyle matches that went 3 rounds more exhausting than 6 minutes under the old format. It's all wrestling- no going out of bounds, injury time outs, wasting time on the ground, etc.

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    Default Re: US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by arm-spin View Post
    Depends on the tournament, maybe, but at the Olympics conditioning was hugely important due to the matches being wrestled close together. Big name guys- Urishev, Aldatov, Gayzumov, even Americans Lester and Pireziwho (spelling?) looked very exhausted. From personal experience, I haven't wrestled much folkstyle but I found freestyle matches that went 3 rounds more exhausting than 6 minutes under the old format. It's all wrestling- no going out of bounds, injury time outs, wasting time on the ground, etc.
    I love the Olympic blitz style tournament format where the matches come right after each so the prelimins through the semis are wrestled in a little over 2 hours. Conditioning catches up with you in a big way in your third match in two hours.

    To me it seems like a great balance if you rely to much on conditioning, you will get beat in the early rounds on technique and if you are not in great shape you will wear down in the later rounds.

    Does anyone know if this format came at the same time as the best of three period etc. rule changes?

  5. #5

    Default Re: US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

    Quote Originally Posted by ODH View Post
    I love the Olympic blitz style tournament format where the matches come right after each so the prelimins through the semis are wrestled in a little over 2 hours. Conditioning catches up with you in a big way in your third match in two hours.

    To me it seems like a great balance if you rely to much on conditioning, you will get beat in the early rounds on technique and if you are not in great shape you will wear down in the later rounds.

    Does anyone know if this format came at the same time as the best of three period etc. rule changes?
    I believe the "one day tournament" thing came about as a result of the rule changes. The Olympics seem to rush things more that the WC's, not sure if there is a specific reason or just the result of there being less competitors.

    Did you see the match Gayzumov lost? He just fell apart- leading with a minute left in the third and then it looked like his lungs exploded. I wonder if he also got his bell rung or something, it was crazy to watch. The Aldatov/Urishev match was similar except both guys kept trying while they were tired.

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    Default Re: US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

    Yes to all three of your points and add less weight classes to the list

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    Default Re: US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

    Another factor maybe that the off-season wrestling is less focused on Freestyle now that there are more Folkstyle options. Back in my day every offseason tournament in my area was Freestyle and if you wanted to get better offseason you learned Freestyle

  8. #8

    Default Re: US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

    All of the reasons listed sound reasonable. Does anyone think Title IX has had any effect? With less college wrestlers competing, that could wean out guys who may have improved or matured in college. I don't know how many guys go from a 16-13 freshman season and go on to win gold but there are less opportunities now......Just a thought.

  9. #9

    Default Re: US weaker in freestyle than in past Why?

    Honestly I wouldn't consider this great timing for this topic considering the United States was 1 match from being 1st over all on Earth.

    But, all of your points have merit and certainly do not help us. It just seems America has found a better way to work within the hand it's been dealt.
    To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.

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