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Youth Wrestling Program develops physical fitness and skills

Pagosa Springs Youth Wrestling is still accepting registration for its youth wrestling program.

The program runs to April 9. The registration fee is $10 per individual or $15 per family. The fee will be used to purchase T-shirts and awards.

All practices will be supervised by high school coach Dan Janowsky, along with the high school coaching staff and parent volunteers. Practices are held for two elementary age groups:

Wrestlers in first and second grades will practice Monday and Thursday evenings from 5-5:45 p.m. in the elementary school multi-purpose room.

Grades three and four will practice on Monday and Thursdays from 3:15-4:45 p.m., also in the elementary multi-purpose room. Elementary school students can report to the multi-purpose room immediately after school on the appropriate days.

Grades 5 and 6 practices are held on Monday and Wednesday after school, from 3:40-5 p.m. in the middle school wrestling room. Keith Candelaria, middle school teacher and coach, will lead these practices.

The Pagosa Youth Wrestling Program’s philosophy differs from many in that we believe the majority of time at the youth level should be spent in practice, developing physical fitness and skills, rather than in competitions. We believe that a strong foundation should be built at a young age, readying participants for the intense competition wrestling offers when their body and emotions begin to mature. This formula has proven successful in our program, but more importantly, is modeled after the most successful wrestling programs in the world. (Note: Eastern European nations such as Russia dominate the sport of wrestling at the Olympic level. Their programs generally do not begin intense competition until around 12 years of age.)

The practice schedule will be maintained throughout March and the first week of April and culminates with a “Takedown Dual” with the Ignacio Wrestling Club on Saturday, April 9.

Interested parents can register their child at practice; registration is kept open through the early season.

For more information, call Dan Janowsky, 264-4554.

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