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Iowa Style promotes light weight success at expense of upper weights

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The traditional Iowa style promotes physical preparation that promotes slow twitch muscle fibers.

 

It seems their success has trended downward in terms of weight classes since the 1990s (the board could jump in on and offer proof or counter points).

 

As contemporary coaching styles promote more functional strength and power, Iowa Style offers an increasing disservice to their athletes' physical conditioning. While their practices and workload allow for their athletes to develop high level technique and strategies, these gains come at a greater cost to the advantages that are more contemporary in terms of training: functional strength and power.

 

As all lightweights have less muscle mass than upper weights, their physical preparation style is less detrimental to their lower weights, so their success that was once universal in the 80s and 90s, is now a localized phenomenon in the niche where functional strength and power is the least important. Iowa light weights succeed because Iowa coaches well. Their great coaching increases skill and tactics, but their emphasis on the Iowa Style to implement their improvements limits their overall athletic attributes by developing more slow twitch muscle fibers than other programs like OSU, OSU, and PSU. 

 

Upper weights' muscle fiber plasticity contributes to success to a greater extent than lower weights' plasticity.  This may be true because lighter weights' have less muscle to begin with, and so their overall fiber plasticity will still change but change in a way that affects wrestling success less than their upper weight teammates (the board could jump in and tell me if this conjecture is true or BS). 

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The traditional Iowa style promotes physical preparation that promotes slow twitch muscle fibers.

 

It seems their success has trended downward in terms of weight classes since the 1990s (the board could jump in on and offer proof or counter points).

 

As contemporary coaching styles promote more functional strength and power, Iowa Style offers an increasing disservice to their athletes' physical conditioning. While their practices and workload allow for their athletes to develop high level technique and strategies, these gains come at a greater cost to the advantages that are more contemporary in terms of training: functional strength and power.

 

As all lightweights have less muscle mass than upper weights, their physical preparation style is less detrimental to their lower weights, so their success that was once universal in the 80s and 90s, is now a localized phenomenon in the niche where functional strength and power is the least important. Iowa light weights succeed because Iowa coaches well. Their great coaching increases skill and tactics, but their emphasis on the Iowa Style to implement their improvements limits their overall athletic attributes by developing more slow twitch muscle fibers than other programs like OSU, OSU, and PSU. 

 

Upper weights' muscle fiber plasticity contributes to success to a greater extent than lower weights' plasticity.  This may be true because lighter weights' have less muscle to begin with, and so their overall fiber plasticity will still change but change in a way that affects wrestling success less than their upper weight teammates (the board could jump in and tell me if this conjecture is true or BS). 

I assume you have never opened a basic exercise physiology textbook.

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They have no science except with fat guys. ;)

My view, the coaching skills of Gable was he could coach the Iowa style but left a lot of wiggle room those who didn't wrestle that style. Williams for example. When he left this coaching adaptability left with him.

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My view, the coaching skills of Gable was he could coach the Iowa style but left a lot of wiggle room those who didn't wrestle that style. Williams for example. When he left this coaching adaptability left with him.

 

I don't disagree necessarily.  I don't think even the most ardent Iowa fan thinks the Brands brothers are as good as Gable was.  I think most of us don't think anyone is or will be as good as Gable was, though I'm sure PSU fans would take exception.  The fact that our two top coaches are not only lightweights but twins to boot, and none of our other coaches were high level, NCAA champ/international class wrestlers themselves (until Perry arrived this year) may be a part of the problems, along with Iowa's misguided recruiting strategy.  Hopefully the arrival of Perry and the focus on getting higher end recruits will pay dividends for Iowa.

 

However, you're really messing with my joke by being all serious here. ;-)

Edited by VakAttack

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The traditional Iowa style promotes physical preparation that promotes slow twitch muscle fibers.

This isnt true from a physiological standpoint.  While Iowa relies less on speed, this doesnt mean the basics of wrestling such as doubles, singles, sprawls, and standups use slow twitch fibers.  Because Iowa doesnt utilize fast shots as much as Oklahoma State, it doesnt mean their style is slow twitch based.  No wrestling is slow twitch based.  That would be like saying because a Porsche isnt as fast as a Ferarri, that a Porsche isnt a sports car.

 

 

As contemporary coaching styles promote more functional strength and power, Iowa Style offers an increasing disservice to their athletes' physical conditioning. While their practices and workload allow for their athletes to develop high level technique and strategies, these gains come at a greater cost to the advantages that are more contemporary in terms of training: functional strength and power.

This is 100% not true to the point that it is not only erroneous, it is the exact opposite of the truth.  The most functional training you can get for wrestling is actual wrestling.  The most functional non wrestling training you can get for wrestling is the exact way that Iowa conditions.  Iowa wrestling, their team in specific, is not known for having world class strength and conditioning coaches on staff that put them through weight room workouts; rather, it is done with things in the wrestling room or other body weight exercises.  If you look over time, you are going to have a very tough argument to convince people that Iowa wrestlers are traditionally in bad shape compared to their counterparts.

 

 

Upper weights' muscle fiber plasticity contributes to success to a greater extent than lower weights' plasticity.  This may be true because lighter weights' have less muscle to begin with, and so their overall fiber plasticity will still change but change in a way that affects wrestling success less than their upper weight teammates (the board could jump in and tell me if this conjecture is true or BS).

Again, from a physiological standpoint, this is untrue.  Looking at a 125 vs a 275, muscle vs height does not correlate exponentially.  Strength and power play a bigger part at the heavier weights not because they have more muscle, but because they have more fat.  This is because for a heavyweight to have the phsique of a 133, he would either have to look like a bodybuilder, or he would have to be 6'8''.  If you look at real bodyfat numbers, lower weights are most of the time under 7%, where heavyweights are nowhere near that.  Ironically, a lot of data on this was taken in the 80's and 90's from the sports medicine department at the University of Iowa.

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giphy.gif

 

 

It's a recruiting problem, not a "muscle plasticity" problem.  Who's the last blue-chipper that projected to 184 or higher that Iowa brought in... probably Mike Evans?  And he even dropped to 174.  Like Vak mentioned, there's a perception that Iowa specializes in coaching lightweights.  I don't really think it's true, I just think they missed on their top upperweight targets for 3 or 4 consecutive years and got shoehorned into the "lightweight specialist" brand (pun intended).  

 

IMO the actual problem is the broader perception of the program and the "Iowa Mentality."  That's an entirely different conversation though.  

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giphy.gif

 

 

It's a recruiting problem, not a "muscle plasticity" problem.  Who's the last blue-chipper that projected to 184 or higher that Iowa brought in... probably Mike Evans?  And he even dropped to 174.  Like Vak mentioned, there's a perception that Iowa specializes in coaching lightweights.  I don't really think it's true, I just think they missed on their top upperweight targets for 3 or 4 consecutive years and got shoehorned into the "lightweight specialist" brand (pun intended).  

 

IMO the actual problem is the broader perception of the program and the "Iowa Mentality."  That's an entirely different conversation though.  

 

I guess that may depend on your definition of blue chip.  Some would argue that Brooks and Stoll are blue chip, I guess.  Jacob Warner is definitely blue chip, so Iowa definitely has one now.

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I guess that may depend on your definition of blue chip.  Some would argue that Brooks and Stoll are blue chip, I guess.  Jacob Warner is definitely blue chip, so Iowa definitely has one now.

 

Agreed, Warner is a stud.  I would consider guys that you expect to immediately compete for AA as blue chip.  Others I'm sure have different definitions.  Brooks I suppose is probably right on the edge.

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I don't disagree necessarily. I don't think even the most ardent Iowa fan thinks the Brands brothers are as good as Gable was. I think most of us don't think anyone is or will be as good as Gable was, though I'm sure PSU fans would take exception. The fact that our two top coaches are not only lightweights but twins to boot, and none of our other coaches were high level, NCAA champ/international class wrestlers themselves (until Perry arrived this year) may be a part of the problems, along with Iowa's misguided recruiting strategy. Hopefully the arrival of Perry and the focus on getting higher end recruits will pay dividends for Iowa.

 

However, you're really messing with my joke by being all serious here. ;-)

I never miss a chance to point out how great of a coach Gable is. It seems like over time people think of him as just a grinder coach and his athletes were clones of this.

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This isnt true from a physiological standpoint.  While Iowa relies less on speed, this doesnt mean the basics of wrestling such as doubles, singles, sprawls, and standups use slow twitch fibers.  Because Iowa doesnt utilize fast shots as much as Oklahoma State, it doesnt mean their style is slow twitch based.  No wrestling is slow twitch based.  That would be like saying because a Porsche isnt as fast as a Ferarri, that a Porsche isnt a sports car.

 

This is 100% not true to the point that it is not only erroneous, it is the exact opposite of the truth.  The most functional training you can get for wrestling is actual wrestling.  The most functional non wrestling training you can get for wrestling is the exact way that Iowa conditions.  Iowa wrestling, their team in specific, is not known for having world class strength and conditioning coaches on staff that put them through weight room workouts; rather, it is done with things in the wrestling room or other body weight exercises.  If you look over time, you are going to have a very tough argument to convince people that Iowa wrestlers are traditionally in bad shape compared to their counterparts.

 

Again, from a physiological standpoint, this is untrue.  Looking at a 125 vs a 275, muscle vs height does not correlate exponentially.  Strength and power play a bigger part at the heavier weights not because they have more muscle, but because they have more fat.  This is because for a heavyweight to have the phsique of a 133, he would either have to look like a bodybuilder, or he would have to be 6'8''.  If you look at real bodyfat numbers, lower weights are most of the time under 7%, where heavyweights are nowhere near that.  Ironically, a lot of data on this was taken in the 80's and 90's from the sports medicine department at the University of Iowa.

I appreciate the well-thought response. 

 

As I said originally, I hope many people jump in and tell me why I am wrong, as I don't know enough about what I am saying for it to be considered fact even to me. I have been trying to figure out why Iowa is so much better at their lower weights than upper weights. Hopefully more will explore the idea with us.  

 

Your middle paragraph seems to interpret what I said differently from what I hoped, so I'll give it another go. I mean to say that the constant repetitions that are seen in clips of Iowa's practices, their 41 or 49 from a few years ago doing the same drill for five hours in one day prior to the Big Tens in one of Flow's documentaries, hinders top level speed while developing consistency and skill. 

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"Who's the last blue-chipper that projected to 184 or higher that Iowa brought in..."

 

Steve Mocco?

I can't think of another, but that is a dark shadow that may be obscuring many bright blue chips. 

 

Has the Iowa recruiting dipped everywhere but the low weights? Is that the easy and correct answer to my original post? 

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I can't think of another, but that is a dark shadow that may be obscuring many bright blue chips.

 

Has the Iowa recruiting dipped everywhere but the low weights? Is that the easy and correct answer to my original post?

Iowa did recruit Jordan Blanton, but pulled his scholarship so that Tsirtis could redshirt and use it his fifth year. They felt that Grant Gambrall would fill Blanton's projected spot in the lineup.

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