When it comes to warm-up, we tend to skip it as we are not aware of the benefits that it has. Performing warm-up exercises before wrestling will not only keep injuries away but will also activate your body to go through any sought rigorous training, that you will undertake in your warm-up session. Before starting any sports or exercises, it is highly recommended that an individual should perform warm up strictly to evade any possible injuries.

In our series of articles catered to warm-up exercises, we have come up with another segment, where we will figure out some of the relevant exercises that one should perform as a warm-up exercise before wrestling. The warm-up exercises before wrestling have been defined in stages and they should be done as it is. However, we recommend that you should consult your coach or a sports physiotherapist to have a better understanding of the warm-up exercises required for yourself.

A wrestling warm-up should be different from a warm-up for cross country, basketball or weight training. A wrestling warm-up should be specific for the sport, focused on reducing injury, increasing flexibility and improving performance. Wrestling has been around for many years; its popularity seems to be increasing rapidly among fitness enthusiasts and competitors alike. With a rock-solid core to incredible cardio health, it’s no doubt that wrestlers are some of the fittest athletes in the world.

Benefits of Warm-Up Exercises Before Weightlifting

Wrestling boasts incredible advantages for your body and mind. Luckily, with increased accessibility, you don’t have to be an Olympic-level athlete to reap the benefits of wrestling.

  • Mental Well-Being – Wrestling requires athletes to be incredibly focused. This enables them to react quickly and perform calculated movements. With an emphasis on presence, many wrestlers find themselves developing a sharper mind. Not only will your cognitive function be on high alert, but your mental health will be soaring. Wrestlers experience an increase in their self-resilience, self-discipline, and confidence when they dedicate themselves to training and adopting a wrestling lifestyle. Wrestling encourages a healthy mindset and teaches athletes the value of sportsmanship. The importance of wrestling’s supporting environment encourages respect for fellow athletes.
  • Full Body Workout – Lifting weights and running on the treadmill are great ways to improve your physical fitness, but your lifting sessions are only targeting 1 or 2 muscle groups at a time. Wrestling allows you to embrace a full-body workout and incorporate every muscle group in any given session. Rather than pumping out legs and chest on repeat, you can experience a well-rounded workout with every move in wrestling.
  • Cardio Workout – Wrestling is certainly considered the best for your cardio. This workout not only works all angles of your muscles, but it also gets your heart rate soaring. You can say goodbye to boring step sessions and hello to a fun, high-intensity alternative. You will likely even find you are able to push yourself further due to a focused mind distracting from fatigue. As it is said, the mind gives out before the body, so keeping your mind involved is a great way to push past your cardio limits.
  • Enhances Strength and Endurance – Wrestling increases strength and endurance. Improve your strength through intense sessions and notice a change in the power and speed of your movements. On top of a stronger body, you will also notice your cardiovascular endurance increase as you train. The short, fast bursts are a great tool for increasing lung capacity and encouraging a healthy heart. While you are working out, your heart works hard to pump blood and oxygen to your muscles. Because wrestling incorporates so many muscle groups, eventually you will start to build a stronger heart to keep up.
  • Perfects to Burn Calories – One of the most important aspects of fat loss is a caloric deficit. This means the number of calories you consume is lower than the amount you burn. Since you still need enough nutrients to power your body, there comes a point where you will need to up your calorie burns to keep up with weight-loss results. Fortunately, wrestling offers an incredibly high burn rate. Wrestlers can burn as many as 400 calories in a 6-minute match.

Best Warm-Up Exercises Before Wrestling

Wrestlers must be explosive and move their opponent with power. A wrestler with explosive power has the ability to utilize maximum strength in a short time frame. Explosive power and being successful in wrestling go hand in hand.  A more explosive wrestler has the ability to overpower, outwork and outlast their opponent.

1.) RDL Exercise – RDL exercise is considered one of the best warm-up exercises before wrestling. The RDL exercise is a body control exercise that helps wrestlers increase balance and flexibility in the hamstrings and glutes. RDL exercise should be done nice and slow in order to control the body while touching the floor. During this exercise, the body moves similar to a teeter-totter. Begin at the starting line; swing the front leg forward while the body maintains an upright position. Next, allow the leg to swing back past the midline and on up behind the body. As the leg moves behind the body the wrestler must drop his chest towards the floor to maintain a flat back. The entire purpose of an RDL is to stretch the lower body while maintaining balance and body control.

2.) Caterpillar Exercise – Caterpillar exercise is one of the best warm-up exercises before wrestling. To perform stand with feet hip-width apart. Bend at the waist until fingertips reach the floor and walk the hands out to a comfortable position where the back is flat. When the wrestler reaches this position he then must challenge his core strength by walking his hands above his head.  As the hands reach max distance above the head the wrestler should then begin walking his feet back into the hands. Wrestlers need to make sure to take their hands up above the head as high as possible. This will increase core activation and will strengthen the midline.

3.) Fence Exercises – Fence exercises are one of the best warm-up exercises before wrestling. Basically, there are two types of fence exercises; Over the Fence and Under the Fence Exercise. Performing this exercise will allow you to warm up your hips and glutes. Wrestlers will stand sideways and lift their lead leg high, lower it and then drop in the hips and shift their weight underneath an imaginary object. The wrestler must drop in the butt, not in the chest. When the wrestler sinks his hips, he will stretch his lower half. Hip flexibility is a major problem with young wrestlers and this drill is a great way to help increase hip flexibility.

4.) Karaoke Dynamic K-bands Exercise – This exercise is one of the best warm-up exercises before wrestling. To perform this exercise, stand sideways. The back leg will drive up across the body and the legs will weave back and forth as the wrestler moves laterally. If the wrestler is going to the left, he will be driving his right knee up every time it comes to the front half of the staggering lateral shuffle. Continue alternating legs and swinging the hips through the movement.  By driving the knee up, wrestlers will learn how to control their bodies while exploding through the hip flexors. This exercise will also loosen the core and lower back.

5.) High Knees – High knees exercise is one of the best warm-up exercises before wrestling. This is a simple exercise where the wrestler will begin driving the knees up in a running motion while keeping the body as upright as possible. The key is to drive knees up repeatedly as many times as possible in between 8 to 10 yards, not to see how fast you can get to the other side. Often wrestlers will race to the other side because they feel they are moving faster, but in all reality, they are gaining too much ground forward or linearly. Also, notice the arm action. The goal is for wrestlers, or all runners, to work with 90-degree angles at the elbow and drive the hands forward to eye height with no wasted movements from side to side. It is important to work on arm action during this drill.


The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as a health advice. We would ask you to consult a qualified professional or medical expert to gain additional knowledge before you choose to consume any product or perform any exercise.


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