July 08. 2009 7:22AM
Iowa wrestlers training year-round
By K.J. Pilcher

The Gazette


IOWA CITY ? When many of University of Iowa students head home for the summer, many athletes stay in town.

That includes many of the Hawkeye wrestlers, who extend their sport into a year-round endeavor.

?It?s a really important piece of the training that goes into the year,? senior Jay Borschel said. ?It?s a time to get together and be around each other. Get some good training in. We don?t have to worry about matches and things like that coming up. It?s a good time to get on the mat.?

Borschel said ?everyone?s here? training. They also balance duties working at various summer wrestling camps.

Sweating through the hot and humid days of summer helps keep wrestlers focused in what is considered the off-season. Some use the time to stay involved, maintain conditioning and fine-tune technique.

?For me, it?s just the time to get better at little positions,? Borschel said.

Iowa Coach Tom Brands praised his team?s independence, calling the training an important part of the system that?s produced a 59-6 overall dual record in three years and two straight NCAA team titles.

?When you want to do it on your own and when it?s not required, that?s when you get the most gain,? Brands said. ?A big part of this sport is independence and getting a lot out of yourself. Getting something out of yourself when you need it.?

When a wrestler faces a tough situation during the season, the perseverance needed can be traced to these workouts.

?The structure comes from yourself,? Brands said. ?In essence, you give yourself the structure. When it?s go time in that match and it?s you and the other guy, you dig down deeper that?s all you. When you get it from a practice environment. That?s all you.?

Utilizing time in the summer is essential.

?Some people might say you?re eight or nine months away (from nationals) and these few workouts don?t mean anything, but they mean a lot,? Borschel said. ?You can get a lot done in a time like this.?