Brock wrestlers train and give back to youth in Cuba
During the holiday break the Brock men's and women's wrestling team left the snow and the biting cold behind them to venture south to the beautiful island of Cayo Coco, Cuba.
Upon arrival the Badgers quickly put away thoughts of the pools and pristine beaches, as they commenced their training regime with morning workouts consisting of a 20 minute run and followed by an intense series of plyometric circuits run by the national team strength and conditioning coach Jason MacLean.
With the afternoon practices held on the beach, this presented a different challenge for training. If you have ever tried running on a beach, you can only imagine the difficulties wrestling on a beach must entail. Nevertheless, the Brock crew battled through these new training conditions. To finish off training, they would participate in a beach yoga session lead by 3x Olympic Medalist Tonya Verbeek to aid in maintaining their flexibility after a hard day of training.
During their stay in Cuba, the Badgers had the pleasure to go into the Cuban city of Moron and visit a group of local children.
Unbeknownst to the Badgers, the group they were visiting was actually a youth wrestling team. After watching the children performing impressive acrobatic feats and watching them spar against one another, some of the Brock team, including coach Marty Calder, began playing around with the younger children in a hilarious spectacle.
Once the wrestling had concluded, a game of soccer was organized. The Cuban youth again showed their physical skills as they often got the better of the Brock athletes through the duration of this game.
Afterwards the Badgers gave each of the children a backpack filled with gifts of clothes, school supplies and snacks that they had each put together; which the children were absolutely thrilled to receive. This was a moment these children and Brock athletes will cherish and remember forever.
This trip not only helped broaden the team's skills on the mat, but also presented them with an opportunity to be a part of something bigger than themselves and help positively alter the lives of so many young Cuban athletes.
By Nick Rowe