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3 habits of highly effective training

Its time to start planning – IF you’re ready to have your best season yet,

Last night’s loyal crew at ACE got to experience first-hand how to squeeze the most out of a workout by embracing 3 simple habits:

#1. Snap to focus.   Also known as flipping the switch – as soon as practice begins.  Even better:  pre-planning your directed workout (a concept I talk about often in my room).

#2:  Close the gap, eliminate wasted time.  Getting the most out of your drilling time and your partner’s, means you are helping your partner improve, while your partner does the same for you.

#3:  Good reps – Every time.  Embrace the finer details of any technique – that’s where the magic happens.

Now’s the time you can commit to training that will take you further than ever before.

With this training, you get:

  • As many as 10 trainings per month
  • advanced training events
  • my personalized attention
  • my commitment to utilize every skill I’ve developed in my 35+ years of training athletes to give you the best possible opportunity to maximize your potential
  • a room of dedicated athletes, just like yourself, who, just like you, have committed to training here every week
  • weekly weight management guidance for all who need it
  • mental edge emphasis throughout the season
  • much more than I can mention today

Go here to learn more about it and secure your spot

Why Woody would’ve hated this

There’s one series the late great Wayne Woodrow “Woody” Hayes would NOT have approved of.

Woody was famous for this “3 yards and a cloud of dust” offense – running the ball with a full house backfield down the throats of opposing teams.

Woody did NOT like passing the ball.

He once said this about the forward pass…

“3 things can happen and 2 of them are bad.”

He would have disliked one specific turn in wrestling as well:

The guillotine.

With your typical guillotine leg ride, 3 things can happen there, too:

  • You turn the opponent
  • You get countered and reversed (possibly to your back)
  • You get called for potentially dangerous

Today, more than ever before, referees are making more potentially dangerous calls from this position to protect your opponent’s shoulder.

That’s a bummer if you worked your way to a position of advantage, just to end up giving your opponent a “fresh start.”

Woody would’ve hated that.

I can see him paraphrasing Meatloaf now:

2 out of 3 ain’t good.

Well, I altered this classic move – and made it “Woody safe”.

This version completely eliminates those two negatives – the reversal and the potentially dangerous.

Unlike the traditional guillotine, your opponent’s arm is never in danger of injury….

making the referee’s job a lot easier.

No Potentially dangerous.

Also – NO possibility of getting reversed or going to your back.

Those who attend my leg ride camp can learn this variation on the guillotine (among other things mentioned on this page)


Blowing things up

Here I am, blowing things up again.

Today, we blow up a common meme in wrestling, one that probably every wrestler has heard and been instructed to do, but that gets them broken beat and scarred (thanks Metallica) against the more skilled wrestlers.

That meme?

Explode off the whistle.

Those of you who are wrestling or have wrestled, be honest:  can any of you say you’ve never been told to explode from the bottom position?

Didn’t think so.

And yet, I learned from a young age just how effective that is(n’t) against a skilled top wrestler.

I’ll share this secret with you…

I train athletes to do the same and CRUSH the explode off the whistle wrestlers.

We just trained to stop it last week at ACE, in fact (and will undoubtedly review it this coming week as well).

This week, our focus:  Stop the Explosions, and adapt our Attack System ways, and approach, from the bottom position instead.

You can join us here if you haven’t already.


‘Heavy hands’ – the myth and the reality


Last week I left this one out….

but ‘heavy hands’ is a meme in wrestling circles that is loaded with misconceptions.

For instance….

If you go for the head – get heavy – all the time and right away…

your higher level opponents can pick you apart.

Last week I previewed this briefly with a wrestler at ACE…

And this week, I will be covering it extensively.

You can discover the keys to exploiting every wrestler that gets “heavy” with hands, as well as learning how to safelywork your opponent’s head without leaving yourself open to their attacks.

If you haven’t done so already, you can join us here.

The STOMP heard ’round the Gym

Somewhere there exists a video of this but for now I’ll just have to recount it for you….

Eons ago in a gym not-really-that-far-far-away…

I was wrestling in a college tournament against a bruiser.

This kid was big, strong, and athletic – and in the opening moments of the match, he grabbed me and threw me violently to my back.  It was all I could do to keep from getting pinned.

There’s a moment, and again, if I had the video you’d see it, that I look around and see that I am a mere foot away from the out of bounds line.  At the moment I started scrambling furiously to force us out of bounds (was I fleeing?  Meh.)

I survived it – got out of bounds – and earned myself a fresh start.

Now, way behind, I started the slow journey back.


Takedown (I don’t remember how I got him down).

Escape for him.

Now I was closing the gap, but I needed another takedown to tie it up.

I tried the only thing I could think of at the time.

I STOMPED my foot.  HARD.

He didn’t budge.

Years later we would run the tape back over and over again and laugh at my set-up attempt, the big foot stomp.

But in the moment it was serious business.  Stomping my foot was all that came to mind.

I don’t know what I was thinking.  Maybe I was hoping that he would just disintegrate on the spot. 

I can assure you that he did not disintegrate.

Somehow I forced the match to overtime.

No score first period.

One quick escape in the 2nd period.

A quick escape in the 3rd period.

Overtime ends.

They brought us to the center (this was in the day when a match could be decided by criteria instead of a wrestling conclusion)…..

And raised his hand.

It would have been my 3rd title in 3 years at that tournament.

After a few minutes, a wrestler from a rival school came over to me.  

“My coach said you should have won by criteria.  They raised the wrong hand.  Tell your coach.”

I approached my coach and relayed the message.

He blew it off.

“You wrestled well but you lost.”

I told the wrestler what he said and he took it back to his coach.

Then that coach sent for me.

I  talked to him and he told me this:

You should have won on the 19th criteria.  You escaped 1 second faster than him in overtime.

He then huddled with another coach on the tournament committee….

They called me back to the center….

And raised my hand.

It helps to read the rulebook front and back.

Now for the point of this story…

If I had just had a more effective set-up than the STOMP….

when action happens fast, and you’re in the middle of the match, and there’s no time to think…

your quick instincts that you developed here must kick in.

Or, if you didn’t develop them here

Maybe just stomp your foot.


Pirates of the Takedown: Dead Shots Score No Points

The horror unfolded before my eyes….the crowd let out a gasp.

There he was, trapped underneath with no hope of scoring on yet another Dead Shot.

Oh, he started off the match with plenty of power and intensity.  Pushed his opponent around, grabbed his head and gave it a tug…

It certainly looked like he was about to dominate this match.

Then it happened.

As I looked on in horror, I thought to myself, even Jack Sparrow couldn’t revive that shot.

Its a familiar scene in gyms all over the country:

Dead shots that score no points.  

Attacks that result in:

  • getting stuck underneath and punished by his crossface and hips
  • a complete miss of the leg
  • athletes getting to the leg, only to be overpowered.

Many blame these factors:

  • your opponent was too strong
  • your opponent was too fast
  • your opponent is just too good.  You shouldn’t expect to score on him.

When I tell folks that you can overcome these factors, I often hear something like this:

C’mon Monte Hall, you can’t “look behind door #2” and fix the opponent being stronger, faster or better!

And they’re right.

But you can overcome these factors – and wrestlers do every day.

Here’s how:

  • possess the skill to position yourself so you can’t be easily attacked
  • develop the skill to put your opponent on defense immediately using very effective and specific methods
  • be able to handfight and break your opponent (note:  grabbing the head is NOT handfighting)
  • have the skill to dynamically attack your opponent 5 ways

Even more:

  • eliminate the opponent’s speed advantage with a finely tuned setup series that forces him to learn right into your shot (making YOU “faster” and him slower)
  • eliminate his strength advantage by grabbing the leg in the exact and precise position that allows you to fight the weakest joint in the body, and avoid the strongest muscles in the body
  • curtail his athletic advantage with a finely tuned, precise finishing series that consistently stymies even the top wrestlers

Although Jack Sparrow had to develop his highly effective (yet unorthodox) ways over many years, your ability to score from your shots can increase dramatically in just 4 days.

Warning:  It will take actual training – it won’t be enough to just see it or have some celeb in a clinic go over it and sprinkle his magic pixie dust on you and fix it.

The good news – you can get it this summer

PS:  Adopt the Attack System Mindset for maximum confidence:  every time they put their hands on you, you have a scoring opportunity

Let go of Brandon?
Let go of Brandon?

Let go of Brandon?

Big decision to be made, and you only have a very short time in which to make it.

What will you do?

The decision is one that will be made a quadruple times this wrestling season by desperate wrestlers trying to eke out a win.

Its the Down By One scenario, which often looks like this:

You’re down by one in the top position in the third period.

Do you let your opponent go, or stay on top and try to turn him?

“Well, that depends”, you say?

And you’d be right.  It depends on factors such as:

  • the time left on the clock
  • How good are you on your feet, as well as…
  • How good is your opponent on his feet?
  • Are you confident in turning your opponent?

If number Four elicits an “eh”….

Now’s the time to change that.

This weekend’s Laser Focus Camp is all about the mat.  Getting out from tough leg riders when on bottom…

and Scoring when on the top.

Notice I didn’t say RIDING.

Equestrians ride horses.  Wrestlers TURN opponents.

When you master the art of turning quality opponents, it gives you the option to stay on a tough takedown artist, instead of letting him up and trying to beat him from his best position.

You can join us by going here while its still open, which won’t be long now