Girls wrestling is increasing in popularity and the numbers are on the rise. Naperville Wrestling Club is offering free clinics to keep up with demand.
Girls Wrestling Free Clinic
Jake: Brittany is awesome. We have a great opportunity with someone that’s been to the highest level, who’s competed at the highest level, who’s done this before. To give girls the avenue – you can do this.
Naperville Wrestling Club would like to welcome you to its free girls clinic, hosted at Naperville Central and led by North Central Women’s Wrestling GA Brittany Marshall
Brittany: It’s definitely taking off and so that’s something that – I feel like it’s needed. A lot of times you get girls and they want to wrestle, and they often have to compete with the guys. But they want to be competing with the girls
Marshall is talking about the recent increase in popularity for girls and women’s wrestling. In fact, at the college level, North Central has introduced a women’s program for the first time for the 2019-2020 season.
That has led to more interest trickling down to the high school and junior high levels, and felt at the club level.
Jake: We’ve had girls wrestle for years. There’s been girl wrestlers forever. And now, giving them the opportunity to compete on their own and give them their own sport has been awesome.
Who is Jake Sandborn?
Jake Sandborn is the president of the Naperville wrestling club – has been for two years. In that time, the club has begun placing a bigger emphasis at getting the message out – Wrestling is for all.
Jake: Everyone can wrestle. And I think that there’s been a stigma that it’s only a boys sport. But now, encouraging young girls to get out and try it – and they have different opportunities – it’s a great time to be involved in the sport of wrestling, it’s exciting.
Katelyn: Getting to exert your energy, really. And you don’t have to stick to one move, you don’t just have to do one move and go off of that. You can kind of do whatever.
Katelyn Bell is 12 years old and has officially been wrestling for a short time… about a year.
Brittany Marshall’s Journey
It was only a short while ago that Marshall got the call in her home state of Texas to move her life to Naperville. North Central Head Wrestling Coach, Joe Norton, reached out with an offer too good to refuse.
Brittany: “Joe called me and he was like, “well, I have this opportunity, do you want it?” and I was like “yeah!”. I’m very, I jump on opportunities like that.
Brittany: Honestly I think this is the coolest thing I’ve ever done. Being apart of something that’s bigger than myself, being apart of girls (and young women) and their process… and watching them grow and glow all at the same time, and figure out different things… playing a small part in their big adventure… that means… you have no idea.
And while the moment is profound for Marshall – being able to pass her experience on after finishing as a state winner in high school and a national champ in college – it’s the same for the next generation. That includes Katelyn.
Katelyn: I feel like it’s going to be fun… I don’t know. Cause I’ve never had a girl coach before so I don’t even know.
Jake: The opportunity for one Brittany Marshall to influence one young girl to continue the sports of wrestling is an awesome opportunity.
Reporting for Sports Story Sunday, I’m Kevin Jackman