How Long Does It Take To Get Good at Wrestling?

How long does it take to get good at wrestling?

Wrestling is one of those sports that almost anyone can compete in, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone will be good at it. There’s a massive difference between ‘being a wrestler’ and ‘being a good wrestler.’ For those who aren’t born naturals, how long does it usually take to become good at the sport?

It takes at least 1-3 years to really get good at wrestling. The amount of time it takes to become a good wrestler varies from person to person. Determining factors include how often you train, how serious you are about the sport, whether or not you have a good instructor, and whether you’re willing to put in the extra time working out and training. 

That said, there are multiple styles of wrestling. The ones we are going to be talking about in this article would include folkstyle, freestyle, and greco-roman. There are differences in each style but they will all take about the same amount of time to learn.

In this article, we’ll talk more about each of these determining factors and how they relate to your ability to become a good wrestler. I’ll also provide you with some of the best training tips and techniques to improve your wrestling skills more quickly. 

When You Can Expect To Become a Good Wrestler

No one can predict the amount of time it’ll take you to become a good wrestler. The answer to that question depends on a lot of factors, including those listed above. However, those aren’t the only factors. Your age, physical health, and natural ability will also contribute to how quickly you can become a proficient wrestler. 

Your age, current level of physical fitness, and natural ability aren’t things you can change, though. Let’s look at some of the factors you can control.

How Often Do You Train?

Wrestlers at the college level train about four days a week during the wrestling season and at least two or three days a week in the off-season. Keep in mind; these are people who have probably been wrestling for some time and have a good grasp of the basics. On the other hand, many high school wrestlers practice every day after school, and they occasionally have supplemental practices on the weekends as well.

If you’re entirely new to wrestling, you may want to train more often. This is especially true if your body isn’t where it needs to be physically. You may have to take some time to get in shape before you can start focusing on learning how to wrestle correctly.

Are You Serious About Becoming a Good Wrestler?

Becoming good at anything doesn’t just take time; it also takes dedication and effort. You must be serious about becoming a good wrestler. Otherwise, you’re just going to do things halfway, and you’re not likely to improve by doing that. If wrestling isn’t something you’re serious about, you should probably give it up because you’ll never be great at it.

Do You Have a Good Wrestling Instructor/Coach?

These days, anyone can learn to do practically anything by watching a Youtube video on it. This is also somewhat true of wrestling, but you need a great instructor if you want to be great at it. If you’re wrestling on a high school or college team, you won’t have a lot of choice in the matter.

However, if you’re learning to wrestle on your own, as an adult, you can shop around to find the best coach/instructor. Talk to other people who wrestle; read reviews online; request to sit in on some of the coach’s practices with other students. A good coach can go a long way towards helping you become a great wrestler.

Learning Online

As previously stated you can learn a ton of information for free online these days. In addition, there are a ton of great courses that you can purchase online as well that might go into greater detail than you might find for free.

If you are serious about getting good fast then I would suggest investing in some online digital programs. A good resource to look into would be They have a ton of great wrestling instructionals in folkstyle, freestyle, and Greco Roman. 

Are You Putting in the Extra Time Required?

Depending on how long your lessons last and how often you have them, you may not be getting enough practice through them alone. Even if you are getting enough wrestling practice, it’s still your responsibility to supplement your workouts on your own time. 

Weight training, cardiovascular training, reflex training – these are all things you should be doing to prepare your body for wrestling, and these things are things that happen outside of your designated wrestling practice time.

Training Techniques To Help You Improve At Wrestling Faster 

If you’re here hoping to learn how to become a better wrestler, you’re in luck. I’ve compiled a list of some of the best workouts and training exercises you can do to help you get your body in shape and perfect your wrestling moves. 

Stance and Motion Drills

Stance and motion are two of the most fundamental principles of wrestling, which is why it’s so crucial that you work on them early and often. There are several drills to practice when working on stance and motion, including the following: 

  • Perfecting your stance
  • Down blocks
  • Shadow wrestling
  • Sprawls
  • Shots
  • Elevation changes
  • Circling

No matter your age, these are things that every wrestler should be practicing regularly. Olympic wrestler Adeline Gray has a great video showing you how to do many of these drills. 

Strength and Weight Training

Team USA has an article about proper weight training that breaks down the best exercises for people of a certain age – under 12, 13-15, and 16+. Many of the best strength exercises for wrestlers of any age are common ones:

  • Push-ups Or Bench Press
  • Pull-ups
  • Barbell Rows
  • Sit-ups Or Crunches 
  • Shoulder presses
  • Fronts Squats
  • Back Squat 
  • Deadlifts. 

Garage Strength also has a great workout video showing you some of the best weightlifting exercises for adult wrestlers.

Endurance Training

Typical endurance training for wrestlers includes:

  • Running
  • Swimming
  • Biking

As these are the three most common types of endurance training, it makes sense that wrestlers would benefit from them. You should tackle endurance training more heavily in the off-season. Strength and reflex training should take precedence during wrestling season.

Speed and Reflex Training

Being quick and having lightning-fast reflexes are other imperatives for good wrestlers. There are tons of drills you can use to help improve your speed and reflex times. has a pretty comprehensive list of those drills here.  There’s also a great video on Youtube by CreightonWrestling that demonstrates three of the best speed drills to practice.

Interestingly enough, numerous studies have also proven that playing action-genre video games can improve your reflex times. The principle behind this idea is that reacting quickly in action-packed video games teaches the brain to make accurate decisions more quickly, thereby increasing your reflexes’ speed. So, all you gamer-wrestlers out there are certainly in luck!

Technique Training

The main techniques involved in wrestling are the takedowns and the pins. You can’t win a wrestling match without knowing how to do either of those things, so it’s no surprise that a significant amount of time is spent learning to do them properly. 

There are all kinds of different takedowns, including single- and double-leg takedowns, underhooks, overhooks, the bearhug, and more. There are also plenty of other pins, the most popular being the full nelson. There are also the half nelson, the armbar, and the cross-face cradle, just to name a few. 

Learning these essentials is key to winning your wrestling matches. 

Final Thoughts

There’s no definitive timeline for becoming a good wrestler. Instead, the time it’ll take you depends on a variety of factors, including your age, current physical condition, dedication to learning, how often you practice, and more. 

Luckily, if you want to become good at wrestling, you can. Simply take it seriously, put in the time and effort, and train regularly both on the mat and at the gym. Wrestling is an entertaining sport that provides a great workout, so even if it takes you a while to get good, you’ll be reaping a ton of benefits along the way. 

Joshua Paul

Joshua Paul is a BJJ purple belt who lives in Austin, Texas. Joshua loves all forms of grappling and when he is off the mats he is likely spending time with his wife and son.

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