Jackson Wrestling http://levelupwrestling.com/why-kids-should-wrestle/

Youth Wrestling Parent Information

The JACKSON YOUTH WRESTLING PROGRAM is designed for children in grades Kindergarten through 6. Participants will learn the fundamentals and basic skills necessary to be successful in the sport of wrestling. These skills are taught in a positive and enthusiastic manner by our volunteer coaching staff. Our wrestling program is led by High School Coach Ronnie Hepner, Middle School Coach Brad Kress, and Head Youth Coach Jared Tentler.   Jeff Dimos is the President of our Jackson TakeDown Club.

Competition is an integral part of any wrestling program. We believe that we are building the foundation for a high school program that will be considered one of the premier programs in Northeast Ohio as well as the state as a whole. It is our goal to help our children grow and develop vital skills necessary to succeed on the wrestling mat as well as everyday life. Key values such as sportsmanship, character, positive attitude, discipline, self-confidence, and hard work create the core of this successful program. The key to any good ending is a strong beginning. We believe this program will set the stage towards a successful and rewarding life for all our children.  We encourage parents to read this article about the many benefits of Youth Wrestling and how your role as a parent can help make your wrestler's experience in the sport a positive one.

Practices will be held for our Biddy Program on Monday evenings from 6:00pm to 7:15 pm.  The Biddy Program is for athletes in grades K-2.  The Varsity/Junior Varsity Program will be held on Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday from 6:00 pm – 7:40 pm. All Youth Wrestling practices will be held in the High School wrestling room.  Practices will begin the first week of November. The exact date will be announced soon, please check the Events Calendar for updates.  Practices will continue into the first of February.

Tentatively, League matches will be held at GlenOak High School on Sunday mornings/afternoons. The first league meet is in late November and runs through to January. Our newer wrestlers will be involved in “All Star Sundays”: special competitions designed to educate and build skill levels.

Biddy, All-Stars, Junior Varsity, Varsity...what does it all mean?  Great question, let's start with the

  • Varsity Lineup.  Each year we have wrestle-offs (described below) which determine which wrestlers will comprise the Varsity Lineup.  The Varsity Lineup competes in what are called "dual matches" or team matches and "dual tournaments" or team tournaments against youth programs from other communities.  These duals are reflective of the types of competitions the wrestlers will experience in the Middle and High School levels.
  • Junior Varsity is a term that we use to describe wrestlers in 3rd through 6th grade who may be just starting out and perhaps are not yet experienced enough for the Varsity Lineup or may have not yet won the wrestle-off for their weight class.  It's important to note that all wrestlers in 3rd through 6th grade are eligible to wrestle-off in their weight class for the Varsity Lineup if the Coaches and parents agree that the wrestler is ready for the more competitive environment.
  • Biddy is a term that we use for all wrestlers in grades Kindergarten through 2nd grade. Occasionally a wrestler from the Biddy program will make the Varsity Lineup, only after the coaches and the Biddy wrestler's parents agree that the Biddy is experienced enough and ready for a more competitive environment.  Generally speaking, this is a rarity.   
  • All-Stars is a term that we use to describe the competitions which are designed to give the Biddy and Junior Varisty wrestlers an opportunity to wrestle in a live match against wrestlers from other community programs who have similar experience levels and weight classes.  
While we want to see every one of our wrestlers grow and develop, we believe it is very important that younger and/or less experienced wrestlers develop a love for the sport and learn the basics before they move onto the more competitive aspects of this amazing sport.  If you have any questions about these classifications or about the structure of the Youth program, we encourage you to reach out to the any of the coaches or the Youth Rep. 

Varsity wrestle offs will be held on announced dates. These dates will be available on the Youth Events calendar once they have been determined. The wrestler will be given the opportunity to let the coaching staff know what weight they want to wrestle off at on the Friday nights practice. We will give the wrestler two opportunities to weigh in, once at practice and prior to the wrestle off. The wrestler challenging must beat the current varsity wrestler 2 out of 3 times. (These matches will be held on the same night with a 15-20 minute break between each match) If the current varsity wrestler wins the first match the wrestle off is over. If the challenger misses the wrestle off, he can challenge again at the next wrestle off. The wrestler can not be over 1 pound of the weight class to wrestle off. Example, 60lb weight class can weigh 61lbs. A wrestler can only wrestle “up” one weight class. Example, if the wrestler weighs 60lbs he can wrestle up to the 64lb weight class but not up to the 67lb weight class. Wrestle offs will be refereed by Coach Tentler. The coaching staff has the right to decline any wrestle off challenge.

Weight classes are: 49, 52, 56, 60, 64, 67, 70, 73, 76, 79, 82, 86, 90, 95, 100, 105, 110, 120, 132, 150, 175. Most all of the matches and tournaments are “scratch” weight. Example: 60lb wrestlers must weigh 60lbs or less to wrestle the 60lb weight class. Our new league requires wrestlers to make scratch weight. At the district tournament wrestlers will get a 1lb allowance and at the state tournament 2lbs.

Wrestling Room Tips


  1. Always wear clean gear during practice.
  2. Bring an extra t-shirt to change into after practice.
  3. Clean head gear, knee pads and shoes once a week.
  4. Get some sort of skin protection. Apply prior to practice. 
  5. Wear your head gear at all times during practice and in competitions.
  6. Shower as soon as you get home. Use some sort of antibacterial soap and shampoo.

Parent Tips

  1. Encourage your wrestler.
  2. Volunteer in some way.
  3. Trust your coaching staff.
  4. Don’t panic.
  5. Ask Questions.

Wondering why kids should wrestle:   Here is a pretty good article that explains it