Women’s wrestling is one of the fastest growing high school sports in the country. In Minnesota, it wasn’t even an official sport until the last grade. Now, led by champions like Hastings’ Skyler Little Soldier, the number of girls wrestling in the state has more than doubled from her 250 to her 541. Currently at 145 pounds she is 16 years old junior she wrestling Place in the Top 10 High School Girl Wrestlers in the Nation.
She describes her grueling training regime:it is 500 each.
Brave asked, “What got you interested?”
“My brother,” she replied. “They took him with him to his wrestling practice. I just wanted to get started right there and then.”
And the proud descendants of Native Americans, the Little Soldiers now hold many honors, including state champions.
When she started wrestling at the age of five, the only opponents around her were boys. Braver: Oh, did you say you can beat her easily because she’s a girl?
“Yes. People have been saying that for a long time.”
“I kept proving them wrong.”
“She’s the one who broke the glass ceiling and opened doors for other girls,” Little Soldier head coach Tim Heineberg said.
Henneberg said last season when Hastings High School first fielded its girls’ wrestling team, it was just Skyler and five other girls. I have girls begging, pleading and wanting to participate in sports.
Sally Roberts, who was a champion herself, is the main reason women’s wrestling took off. Every time you get knocked down, you have to get back up.”
Roberts is the founder of the advocacy group Wrestle Like a Girl. When asked what her name means, she replied: I worked like a girl, so no problem.I said, “Wait a minute, I’m a two-time bronze medalist at the World Championships. If he wants to win, maybe he I could fight like a girl. Or rather, I’m not ashamed. So we took that name, honored it, and owned it. ”
Roberts said he grew up in a stressful home and was always in trouble. I’m going to juvenile hall after school.”
She said wrestling turned her life around. After winning many titles and serving in the Army Special Forces, she launched her Wrestle Like a Girl in 2016. She currently has 38 and is planning to add more.
American women (Helen Maroulis and Tamirah Mariama Mensah Stock) have won gold medals in wrestling at the last two Olympics. However, according to Roberts, they don’t get as much attention as other champions because of the erroneous perception that sports aren’t feminine.
Don’t tell the girls who attended wrestling workshops at American University in Washington DC.
Perla, who attended the workshop, said, “The media has always portrayed contact sports as something very masculine and untouchable by girls because we are ‘fragile.’ why do not you?”
Cindy said at first, “No, it’s for men. I don’t want to do that. I wanted to be a cheerleader.”
Kaley described wrestling as “fun and aggressive”.
At the Minnesota State Championships, where Pine Island ninth grader Lauren Elsmore competed, her father — the men’s wrestling coach — admitted he had tried and failed to keep his eight-year-old daughter away. Junction.
“I said, ‘Dad, let me wrestle,’ and he said, ‘No, no, no, no,'” Lauren said.
“My first reaction was, ‘No, the girls didn’t wrestle,'” Jason Elmore said.
he was unforgiving. And before long, Lauren found a girls’ show.
Braver asked Lauren.
“Some cried and threw headgear,” Lauren said. “But now that the girls have started wrestling, they’re starting to like it… what’s a good word for that?”
“Respect! And they’re not so upset.”
As for homage, Skylar Little Soldier has earned his state title for the second time. And where? “I have the same dream that I work on every day: an Olympic gold medalist,” she says.
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Story produced by David Rothman. Editor: George Pozderek.