The Wetaskiwin Wrestling Club’s elementary program wrapped up its season with a final practice on Jan. 31. Coaches Mike Spinney and Cari MacDonnell are already encouraging the young athletes to come back next year for another fun season to further their skills.
“To start at a young age we hope to get them excited about the sport of wrestling and to hopefully keep them interested so they keep wrestling and grow our junior high and high school teams,” said Spinney.
The goals of the program — housing Kindergarten to Grade 6 wrestlers — is to introduce and develop skills and individual characteristics in the sport of wrestling, as well as teach motor and combative skills using different drills, says Spinney.
Spinney and McDonnell see some of the younger students coming into the program as a result of exposure from older siblings.
“Every so often we get a brother/brother or brother /sister combination in our sport which always has helped the program. Usually, but not always, the younger of the two seems to excel a bit more as trying to outperform the other or just looks up to the older and wants to be better,” said Spinney.
By having a program for younger students Spinney says the hope is to get them excited about the sport and keep them interested enough to graduate them to the junior high and senior high school teams.
The Wetaskiwin Wrestling Club elementary program is only two years old and each year gains new comers.
“We will probably restructure the program next year to advance some of the older elementary to more practices. Right now we only run once a week which is good for the younger grades,” said Spinney.