Email Address Invalid. Please enter an email address in the format: [email protected]

Wrestling Glossary



    2-on-1 - Controlling an opponent’s arm with both hands.

    3’s, 12’s, 19’s… etc - Weight classes are often abbreviated in wrestling. For example, instead of saying "103 pounds," or even "103's," most individuals will call the weight class "3's."

    45-minute rule - See “Rest rule”.


    AAU - The acronym for the American Athletic Union.

    Action - A command made by the referee to initiate offensive maneuvers between wrestlers.

    Advanced - A competitor with a high level of experience, typically in the college or international ranks.

    Age group - The divisions in which wrestlers are organized, typically by birth year or school grade.

    All-American - An honor earned by wrestlers that place in specific high-level competitions, typically regional or national.

    Amateur - The term used to identify traditional wrestling styles and distinguish them from professional wrestling. Amateur status is not correlated with monetary gain, as many higher-level amateur athletes receive money as a means to train and compete.

    Angle - The term used to describe how you would position your shoulders/body to be at an angle to your opponent’s when in the neutral position. Creating an angle on your opponent limits him defensively.

    Ankle lace - See "Leg lace".

    Anklet - A piece of equipment that is worn on the ankle and used to designate scoring in a match. These are typically colored either green or red.

    Armdrag - A technique typically used to set up another attack where one wrestler drags his opponent’s arm across his body.

    Association - An organization of clubs or teams in a particular geographic area.

    Attack - An offensive technique used to score points.


    Back points - Points scored by turning and/or holding an opponent on his back.

    Backs - This is an abbreviated term for "Back points."

    Base - The term used to describe a strong and stable position.

    Beach wrestling - A form of wrestling established in the late 20th century that combines rules from current styles. Athletes must compete in a bathing suit and on a sand-like surface.

    Beginner - A competitor that is just starting out in the sport and has competed in only a small number of matches, if any.

    Belly down - A desired position where a wrestler in the bottom position has his stomach (not his back) parallel to the mat.

    Blank - This term is used in dual meet competitions to describe a weight class that has been forfeited. For example, you might hear "That team is blanking at 125's and 130's."

    Blood time - Time allotted in a match that allows a bleeding wrestler to recover, and for blood to be cleaned off of the mat and wrestler(s).

    Body fat - Loose connective tissue that is composed of specialized cells that store energy in the form of fat.

    Body lock - A technique where the offensive wrestler locks around the waist of his opponent with his arms.

    Bonus points - Additional team points awarded when a wrestler wins by major decision, fall or technical fall.

    Bottom position - The wrestler who begins a sequence of wrestling on all fours and in the control of his opponent. See “Referee’s position”.

    Bout - See “Match”.

    Bout sheet - The scoring sheet used to keep track of points, action, penalties and other particulars in a specific match.

    Bout sheet - This is a sheet of paper used to record the scores and result of an individual match.

    Bracket - The physical organization of competitors in a tournament, used to determine who will wrestle and in what order.

    Breakdown - Any top-position technique used to break an opponent off of his base.

    Bridge - See “Neck bridge”.

    Butt pad - A piece of equipment attached to a wrestler’s headgear to prevent head injuries.

    Butterfly lock - A common way of locking hands in freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling. The butterfly lock involves placing both palms together and wrapping the fingers of each hand around the opposite hand without interlacing the fingers.

    Bye - An automatic advancement of certain wrestlers in tournament competition, issued when there is an uneven number of competitors in a bracket.


    Cadet (division) - A division in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition composed of wrestlers ages 16 and 17. Age requirements may vary by competition.

    Camp - A series of training sessions or practices used to build the skills of wrestlers, regardless of team or any other affiliation. Camps are usually separated by age groups or wrestling experience and typically require payment.

    Carbohydrate - An organic compound that is a major energy source for the human body.

    Cardio equipment - A piece of equipment that has a sole purpose of improving the body’s circulatory and respiratory systems.

    Center circle - The small inner circle of the wrestling mat in international competition.

    Certified coach - Any coach who has earned some level of coaching education through a credible organization or governing body. Coaches usually are required to be certified to train athletes and accompany them to competitions.

    Chain wrestling - A series of techniques performed with each separate movement setting up the next technique or hold.

    Challenge - A procedure that allows a coach to dispute a specific call made by an official.

    Championship bracket - The section of a tournament bracket that features wrestlers who have not lost and are still wrestling for first place.

    Choice - The procedure in folkstyle wrestling that randomly allows one of the competitors to decide what position in which to start at the beginning of the second and third periods. The wrestler may choose to start neutral, on top or bottom in referee’s position, or elect to defer his decision until the third period. To ensure fairness, the wrestler that does not receive choice in the second period is given choice in the third period.

    Circle - The line drawn on a mat to designate the starting and out-of-bounds areas.

    Claw - This is a technique used when a wrestler is on top of or behind his opponent. It involves the top wrestler reaching an arm underneath his opponent’s armpit and across his chest in order to grip his neck/shoulder on the opposite side of his body.

    Clinch - See "Ordered hold".

    Clinic - A short workout or series of workouts used to build wrestlers’ skills regardless of team or any other affiliation.

    Club - A team or organization that is not affiliated with any school or institution.

    Coach - An individual who supervises, directs, and trains an athletic team.

    Consolation bracket - The portion of a tournament bracket that features wrestlers who have lost at least one match, but have not been eliminated. Wrestlers in the consolation bracket cannot finish any higher than third place.

    Control - The term used to describe the wrestler who is in a position to maintain power over his opponent.

    Cradle - A pinning combination that involves forcing at least one of an opponent’s legs toward his head. This is done to gain full control and expose the opponent’s back to the mat.

    Crash pad - A piece of protective equipment used in practice to lessen the impact of throws and other techniques.

    Crossface - A technique where a wrestler uses his hand/wrist to put pressure on an opponent's face.

    Cut - This term has two meanings in wrestling:
  1. The process of losing weight. Weight loss in wrestling is often called "cutting weight," and the process of getting down to weight is often called "the cut."
  2. To allow an opponent to escape when controlling him on top.


    Danger position - The position in which a wrestler has his back exposed to the mat in a freestyle or Greco-Roman match.

    Decision - The result of a match when one wrestler simply scores more points than his opponent. In folkstyle, a decision occurs when a wrestler wins by seven points or less. In freestyle and Greco-Roman, a decision occurs when a wrestler wins by five points or less.

    Default - The elimination of a wrestler from a competition due to a disqualification or injury, rather than a regular loss.

    Defer - A strategic act in folkstyle that has one wrestler give the choice of starting position to his opponent in the second period in order to receive choice in the third period. See “Choice”.

    Dehydration - The depletion of water from the body.

    Ding - This is an informal term for a penalty, typically used in the past tense. For example, you may hear "That referee dinged him three times for the same thing. He must be blind!"

    Disqualification - The elimination of competitor in a match or tournament due to a violation of a specific rule.

    Division - A group of wrestlers separated by age or ability.

    Division I, II, III - American college divisions based on the size of the institution. Division I is regarded as the highest level of collegiate competition.

    Double Elimination - A common rule stating that, in tournament competition, any wrestler with two losses prior to the medal round is eliminated from that specific competition.

    Double-leg takedown - A leg attack where a wrestler uses both arms to engage his opponent’s legs in order to take him to the mat.

    DQ - Abbreviation for disqualification.

    Drill - The repeated practice of technique.

    Dual meet - A match between two teams where one wrestler in each weight class is chosen to represent their team in head-to-head competition. Points are awarded to either team when one of its wrestlers wins a match, and the winner of the meet is determined by whichever team has more points after all weight classes have been contested.

    Dual tournament - A tournament in bracket format that is composed of numerous dual meets between full teams of wrestlers.

    Duckwalk - The term used for the repeated practice of the penetration step.

    Dummy - A piece of equipment that allows wrestlers to practice techniques without fear of injuring a practice partner.


    Elementary age - The term used to describe wrestlers in elementary school – typically ages 5 to 10.

    Eligibility - The concept that wrestlers must meet certain criteria in order to compete. Eligibility rules vary by organization. Example: High school wrestlers in the United States must maintain a specific GPA in order to compete.

    Elite - The term used to describe wrestlers who are very experienced – typically wrestlers that win international and world-level competitions.

    Escape - The folkstyle wrestling term used to describe when the wrestler in the bottom position escapes the control of the top wrestler, and returns to the neutral position.

    Event - A specific meet or tournament.

    Exhibition - A featured match in a tournament or other meet used to display the skills of two wrestlers. An exhibition match may or may not be counted in a win-loss record or as a part of a specific competition.


    Face off - The ceremonial meeting in which opponents shake hands prior to dual meets and the finals of tournaments.

    Facemask - A protective covering attached to a wrestler’s headgear to prevent injuries to the face.

    Fall - See “Pin”.

    False start - Any movement or action that occurs before an official’s signal to start.

    Fat - This term is commonly used among wrestler as a way to say that they are above their weight class. You might hear "I'm fat today. I have two pounds to lose before Friday." This statement would indicate that the wrestler is two pounds over his weight class; it does not follow the common use of describing an overweight person.

    FILA - The acronym for the Fédération Internationale des Luttes Associées, or the International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles.

    Finals - The term that describes the championship round of a tournament.

    Finish - The last step in executing a takedown or any offensive technique.

    Fish - This is a term used to describe wrestlers with very little skill or ability. This is because a fish essentially flops around when it's on the ground, very similar to a wrestler who doesn't know what he or she is doing.

    Fish Bowl - This is an informal name for a "Hard luck tournament."

    Five-match rule - A regulation in American high school wrestling that states a wrestler cannot participate in more than five matches in any one day of competition unless it is to determine a place in a postseason tournament.

    Five-point throw - See “Grand amplitude”.

    Flat - This is a negative term to describe a wrestler's inability to perform. "Wrestling flat" may be used to describe the inability to react or generate offense. For example, you may hear "He came out flat in that match and couldn't get his offense going."

    Fleeing the mat - The term used when a wrestler leaves the mat to prevent from being scored upon.

    Flip disc - A type of disc folkstyle referees use to determine choice. This is typically a thin, circular disc that is red on one side and green on the other to represent each wrestler. See choice.

    Folkstyle - The style of wrestling most popular in the United States. It’s also known as collegiate or scholastic style.

    Free weights - A type of strength-training equipment not attached to a machine or any other type of equipment.

    Freestyle - The international style of wrestling that allows both upper- and lower-body techniques.

    Freestyle start - A starting position in both freestyle and folkstyle, where the top wrestler places his hands on the back of an opponent to start the action.

    Full nelson - A technique where the arms of the attacking wrestler are laced under the arms of the opponent and locked behind his head. This is generally an illegal move in many types of wrestling.

    Funk - The term used to describe unorthodox wrestling moves or holds.


    Gassed - This is a common term in wrestling to describe a wrestler's energy level, typically used to describe the lack thereof. Wrestlers often say, "Look at him, he's gassed out. He's barely moving."

    Grand amplitude - A throw in freestyle or Greco-Roman competition where the wrestler being thrown is positioned above the throwing wrestler, causing his feet to pass over his head. A grand amplitude throw instantly ends a period.

    Greco-Roman - A traditional style of wrestling popular around the world. Rules allow only upper-body attacks.

    Groom check - A procedure where officials check a wrestler’s body before competition. Typically officials check for skin diseases, length of nails, and body hair stubble, among other health risks.

    Growth allowance - A designated number of pounds given to scholastic-level wrestlers in order to not restrict physical growth.

    Gut wrench - A technique in freestyle and Greco-Roman where the top wrestler turns his opponent on bottom using a tight body lock.

    Gymnasium - An athletic facility, typically a large space.


    Half Nelson - A pinning combination where the attacking wrestler on top laces his arm under his opponent’ arm and behind his head.

    Hand fighting - The action of using your hands in order to control an opponent and set up an offensive maneuver. This involves attacking an opponent's hands, arms, and head.

    Hard luck tournament - A type of tournament used to give competitors who are eliminated from the main bracket a chance to gain experience by wrestling other eliminated wrestlers.

    Head position - The strategic placement and control of the head used when on offense and defense.

    Headgear - A piece of protective equipment used to protect a wrestler’s ears and head.

    Headlock - A technique that has a wrestler engage an opponent’s head, and typically an arm, in order to take him down or turn him to his back.

    High crotch - A single leg attack where the offensive wrestler controls his opponent’s leg above the knee. This attack is executed with the offensive wrestler’s head to the outside of his opponent’s body.

    High-level attack - An attack that engages an opponent’s upper body.

    Hip throw - A throw executed using one of the wrestler’s hips.

    Homerun Move - This is a risky technique or maneuver (often with low success rates) used by a wrestler who is losing his match. If a homerun move is successful, it will put a wrestler in the position to outscore his opponent, earn back points, or get a pin to end the match.

    Honorable mention - A term used when ranking athletes, it recognizes competitors who fell just short of a specific, high-ranking honor.

    Hydration - The level of water in one’s body. High school competitors must pass hydration testing to be eligible to compete.


    Illegal (move or hold) - A technique that is not allowed in a specific style or competition.

    Injury time - The procedure in a match that allows an injured wrestler to take necessary time for medical attention. Time allowance is dependent on style and level of competition.

    Inside control - This is the term used to describe the placement of your arms when they are to the inside of your opponent’s arms when tying up. Essentially, achieving inside control allows you to assume the dominant position.

    Intensive training - A type of training that focuses on conditioning and mental toughness.

    Intermediate - A skill level or category that describes wrestlers who are still learning and are not defined as beginner or advanced competitors.

    Intrasquad - A practice meet composed of wrestlers from the same team that showcases abilities and determines the team’s starting lineup for regular matches.

    Invitational - A specific tournament or event that limits the numbers of teams or wrestlers that may enter.


    JUCO - Acronym for Junior College.

    Junior (division) - A division in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition composed of wrestlers ages 18 to 20. Age requirements may vary by competition.

    Junior varsity - The group of competitors that are not considered varsity starters. May also be known as a “B” team.

    JV - Acronym for Junior Varsity.


    Knee pad - A piece of equipment that helps lessen the impact on a wrestler’s knees.


    Lace cover - A piece of equipment used to keep a wrestler’s laces from becoming untied. Many wrestling styles require laces to be covered.

    Lead leg - The leg that is forward in a staggered stance.

    League - An association or group of teams usually separated by geographic location.

    Leg attack - A takedown executed on an opponent’s legs.

    Leg lace - A hold in which a wrestler traps his opponent by the ankles to expose his back to the mat. Sometimes known as an "ankle lace."

    Level change - The technique of raising and lowering one’s body in order to create scoring opportunities.

    Lift - The action of lifting an opponent off the mat in the par terre position See “Par terre.” This technique usually precedes a throw, but sometimes a point may be issued for a correct lift even if a throw is not completed.

    Live - The term used to describe competitive wrestling in a practice environment. It’s the equivalent to sparring in other sports, separate from drilling.

    Lock - The term used to describe a wrestler’s locked hands.

    Locking hands - A rule in folkstyle wrestling that prevents wrestlers from locking hands in the top position, unless it is during an attempt to pin an opponent. Locking hands is allowed for the top wrestler in freestyle and Greco-Roman.

    Loss of control - The term officials use when one wrestler loses control of his opponent. In folkstyle, either escape or reversal points are awarded when there is a loss of control.

    Low-level attack - A technique that is executed on an opponent’s lower body.

    Lycra - A material used in wrestling singlets.


    Major decision - The outcome of a match in folkstyle wrestling when one wrestler wins by at least eight points and no more than 14 points.

    Mat - A padded piece of equipment used on the floor or other surfaces to lessen impact and protect competitors. Texture, size and purposes vary.

    Mat time - This is a slang term for “experience,” literally referring to the time a wrestler spends on the mat.

    Match - The competition between two wrestlers judged on a point system.

    Matroom - A room or other facility specifically dedicated to wrestling or another sport requiring mats. Typically, the floor and walls are padded.

    Meatgrinder - A term used to describe an extremely tough tournament composed of highly skilled wrestlers.

    Medal round - The round in a tournament that determines who will earn each medal.

    Meet - A specific competition, typically a dual match or a tournament.

    Middle school age - The term used to describe wrestlers who are attending middle school, typically ages 11 to 13.

    Mid-level attack - An attack that is targeted at the mid-section of an opponent’s body.

    Muscle endurance - The term used to describe the ability to maintain muscle strength for an extended period of time.


    NAIA - Acronym for the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics.

    Nationals - A tournament in which wrestlers from a specific country compete to determine rank on the national level.

    NCAA - The acronym for the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

    Neck bridge - A technique, used to defend against a pin, where a wrestler arches his back and uses his head to support his weight.

    Neutral - The position where both wrestlers are standing and neither is in control of the other wrestler.

    NFHS - The acronym for the National Federation of State High School Associations.

    NHSCA - The acronym for the National High School Coaches Association.

    Novice - An age division in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition composed of wrestlers ages 10 and 11. Age requirements may vary by competition.


    Official - The individual designated to interpret the rules, keep order, score and make calls during a wrestling match.

    Olympics - An international event that occurs every four years and showcases various winter and summer athletic competitions.

    On deck - The term to describe the wrestlers who are set to compete after the match occurring at that time.

    Open mat - A type of practice that is not regimented and is open for wrestlers to work on anything they choose.

    Optional start - A top starting position in folkstyle wrestling where the wrestler places his hands on the back of the bottom wrestler, either to release him or continue some type of offense from this position. This position is similar to the way freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestlers start, and is also known as a “freestyle start.”

    Ordered Hold - A component of both freestyle and Greco-Roman matches where wrestlers are ordered into a specific position to generate scoring opportunities. In freestyle this is enforced to decide a scoreless period. In Greco-Roman the ordered hold takes place in the final 30 seconds of every period.

    OT - Acronym for overtime.

    OTC - See “USOTC”.

    Out of Bounds - This is called by the referee when competitors step outside of the wrestling area. The match is stopped at this point and continued when both wrestlers return to the center of the mat.

    Overhook - See "Whizzer".

    Overtime - Extra period(s) at the end of the regulated competition time used to break a tie and determine the winner.


    Pairing - In freestyle and Greco-Roman competition, this is the process of matching up competitors within a weight division. This is a systematic, detailed process that requires an experienced official.

    Par terre - The starting position in freestyle and Greco-Roman where wrestlers start on the mat in top and bottom positions.

    Passivity - The term in freestyle and Greco-Roman used to describe the inactivity of a wrestler.

    Passivity zone - The outer circle on an international wrestling mat that serves as a boundary.

    Period - A specific portion of a wrestling match regulated by time. Number and duration of periods depends on the level and style of competition.

    Pigtail - This is a less formal term for the "out bracket" in tournament competition. Pigtails are an extra bracket used when the regular bracket is full. Wrestling must win their pigtail match before advancing into the actual tournament.

    Pin - The action of a wrestler pressing both of an opponent’s shoulder blades or other part of the upper-back to the mat. A pin instantly ends the match.

    Pinning combination - The term used to describe any hold that turns an opponent during an attempt to complete a pin. In folkstyle competition, these are the only instances when a wrestler is permitted to lock his hands together.

    Plane - The theoretical flat surface used to determine scoring. It’s composed of the wrestler’s back in accordance to the mat. When the wrestler’s back breaks a 90-degree angle in this plane, scoring of back points occurs.

    Points - The system used to determine the outcome of a match based on scoring techniques.

    Potentially dangerous - The stoppage of an attempted technique that may injure one or both competitors.

    Practice - Organized training to prepare athletes for competition.

    Prep - The term to describe pre-collegiate competition.

    Pre-seed - An unofficial list used to organize wrestlers that are eligible to be seeded for a tournament.


    Qualifier - A specific tournament used to qualify top placers for a more competitive event. The number of qualifiers depends on type and size of each specific event.


    Rashguard - A tight-fitting piece of clothing used to prevent rashes, skin disease, and other injuries.

    Redshirt - A rule in American collegiate sports that allows an athlete to train with a team, but restricts him from taking part in competitions. In wrestling, athletes are usually granted redshirt years for long-term injuries or to train for Olympic competition.

    Referee - See “Official”.

    Referee’s position - The starting position in folkstyle where one wrestler starts on his hands and knees, with the other wrestler covering him, encircling an elbow with one hand and placing the other hand around the back and on the naval.

    Repechage - In freestyle and Greco-Roman competition, this is the system used to decide the final place winners below 1st and 2nd place. Essentially, the repachage system matches up competitors who lost to either of the finalists in the later rounds of competition.

    Rest rule - The regulation in American high school and college wrestling competitions that states wrestlers must be given at least 45 minutes of rest in between matches to ensure safety.

    Reversal - The term for when a bottom wrestler escapes and immediately gains control of the top wrestler using the same technique or action.

    Reverse Lock - A type of body lock used in the par terre position where a wrestler positions his body to face an opponent's legs when locking around his midsection. The reverse lock can be used when starting in the ordered hold in Greco-Roman competition.

    Riding - This is the term used to describe the act of staying on top of and controlling one’s opponent.

    Riding time - See “Time advantage”.

    Ringworm - A fungal infection common in wrestling due to skin-to-skin contact.

    Roll - A technique that involves controlling an opponent’s body while completing a rolling or twisting motion. Rolls are used as a reversal in the bottom position and/or to expose an opponent’s back to the mat in the top position.

    Roster - A complete list of the members of a certain team or organization.

    Round - The term for the action of organizing and designating matches among a group of particular wrestlers. In tournament competition, rounds continue in a series until all medals or places have been decided. A round may also refer to a specific portion of a match in international competition. See “Period”.


    Sanctioned event - A competition that is approved by a specific organization.

    Schoolboy/Schoolgirl - An age division in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition composed of wrestlers ages 12 and 13. Age requirements may vary by competition.

    Scorekeeper - An individual that manages the score of a match.

    Scoring table - The table, usually at the edge of the mat, where individuals keep track of both the time and score of a match.

    Scratch weight - The minimum weight a wrestler needs to be without growth allowance.

    Scrimmage - A practice match or meet that is not counted on a win-loss record.

    Seed - The term used to describe where wrestlers are positioned in a bracket according to pre-determined ranks. Seeding is used to separate what are thought to be higher-level opponents until later rounds.

    Seeding meeting - A time when coaches and/or other team representatives meet before a tournament to determine the placement of wrestlers within a bracket. Seeding ensures that higher-level competitors are separated until later rounds of competitions.

    Senior (division) - A division in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition composed of wrestlers ages 20 and above. Age requirements may vary by competition.

    Setup - A technique used to open up another attack.

    Shoot - To take a penetration step towards an opponent in an attempt to take the opponent down. See "penetration step”.

    Shot - The term describing an attempt at a takedown. See “Leg attack”.

    Single-leg takedown - A technique that has a wrestler grab hold of an opponent’s legs in order to take him to the mat and gain control.

    Singlet - A tight-fitting uniform required for wrestling competitions. The style of singlets may vary depending on the style of wrestling.

    Slam - The use of excessive force when returning an opponent to the mat. Slams are illegal in most types of wrestling.

    Slip - A term used in freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling to describe a failed attempt at an attack that results in the defensive wrestling gaining control over the offensive wrestler after the move has been completed. Neither wrestler is awarded points in the event of a slip.

    Snap-down - This is a technique that involves pressuring downward on an opponent’s head, while also moving it, in order to break his position.

    Souple - A type of throw in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition where the attacking wrestler throws his opponent to his back head using a back arch. See also: "Grand Amplitude".

    Spike - Any attacking move that is perceived as being an intentional attempt to slam an opponent’s head into the mat. Spiking is an illegal move in all types of wrestling.

    Spiral - This is a technique that is used when a wrestler is in the top position. It involves him “snaking” (positioning) one or both of his arms to the inside of the bottom wrestler’s thighs.

    Split sole - A style of wrestling shoe sole of which is composed of two distinct sections on the ball and heel separated at the arch. Generally, the separate portions of the shoe allow for greater flexibility.

    Sprawl - A technique used to defend a takedown. It involves the defensive wrestler kicking his legs back in order to put pressure on the attacking wrestler and prevent himself from being taken down.

    Square - This is the term used to describe how you would position your shoulders/body to be parallel to your opponent’s while you are in the neutral position. This is done to prevent him from being able to create angles on you.

    Square stance - A type of wrestling stance where both of an individual’s legs are next to each other, designating no lead leg. This is typically a defensive stance.

    Staggered stance - A type of wrestling stance where one leg is forward. Typically the wrestler’s dominant leg is in back. This is usually used as an offensive stance. See “Lead leg”.

    Staging - The area at a tournament to where wrestlers are called in order to be organized and displaced onto one of several mats.

    Stalemate - A call made by the official when both wrestlers are stuck in a position where it is likely that either will score. This call breaks the action and starts the wrestlers in their original position.

    Stalling - The term in folkstyle wrestling used to describe a wrestler who is inactive or not attempting to score. Stalling may occur in any position.

    Stance - The basic position wrestlers assume when standing in a neutral position.

    Stand up - A technique used in folkstyle where the bottom wrestler tries to escape control from the top wrestler.

    Starter - A wrestler that represents his team or organization in a competition. Typically, only one starter per weight class is allowed from each team or organization.

    Stat - This is the abbreviated term for a "Statistician." A stat may also be a team manager. Stats are essentially on hand to do whatever they can to help out the team, like mopping the mats, keeping score at a meet, etc.

    State tournament - A tournament comprised of the best competitors from throughout a particular state used to determine state champions. Some states are separated into divisions and may yield several state champions in each weight class.

    Statistician - An individual that keeps statistics for a team.

    Stick/Stuck - This is another name for a Pin. It may be used in the present tense, as in "Stick him!" It may also be used in the past tense, as in "He got stuck in that match."

    Stud - This term is used to describe a very skilled wrestler. Often times, a stud stands out among both his teammates and competitors. For example, you may hear "Did you see how quick he pinned that guy? He's a stud!"

    Suplex - See "Souple".


    Takedown - The action that occurs from the standing/neutral position when an opponent is taken to the mat and controlled.

    Technical fall - The outcome of a match in folkstyle wrestling that occurs when one wrestler exceeds the other’s score by 15 points or more.

    Technical superiority - The result of a specific round in freestyle and Greco-Roman that is declared when one wrestler gains a six-point lead over his opponent.

    Technique - A specific movement or hold that can be practiced to increase effectiveness.

    Tie/Tie-up - A technique where one or both of a wrestler’s arms are used to control the position of an opponent.

    Tight waist - This is a technique used from the top position that involves a wrestler reaching his arm underneath his opponent’s midsection, and then gripping his opponent’s waist on the opposite side of his body.

    Time advantage - The accumulated amount of time for riding/maintaining control of an opponent in college level competition.

    Timer - The individual that regulates the time in a match.

    Top position - The term to describe the wrestler who is on top in Referee’s position or when a takedown occurs and the action is brought to the mat. The wrestler in the top position is in control of the wrestler in the bottom position. See “Bottom position”.

    Touch fall - A pin that occurs instantly in freestyle and Greco-Roman, when both of a competitor’s shoulders or scapulae touch the mat.

    Tournament - An organized event in which large amounts of athletes and/or teams compete for a championship.

    Tournament director - An individual that organizes a specific tournament.

    Trail leg - This is a wrestler's back leg when performing a penetration step. A wrestler pushes off of the trail leg to generate power for the takedown.

    Turn - Any technique in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition that exposes an opponent's back to the mat.


    Unattached - A competitor that is entered into a tournament on an individual basis and may not be affiliated with any specific team or organization or count in the overall team score.

    Underhook - A type of tie where the attacking wrestler hooks his arm underneath his opponent's arm in order to set up an offensive maneuver.

    Unisole - A style of wrestling shoe that has one flat, even-surfaced sole that connects the ball and the heel.

    University (division) - A division in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition that is composed of wrestlers who attend a college or university. Eligibility may vary by event.

    Unnecessary roughness - This is called when a wrestler tries to inflict pain or intentionally injure an opponent.

    Unsportsmanlike conduct - An action during a match or meet that is thought to be immoral in terms of the rules of the sport. Unsportsmanlike conduct may result in a deduction of points or a competitor being ejected from competition.

    USA Wrestling - The governing body for the sport of wrestling in America, focused mainly on, but not limited to, freestyle and Greco-Roman competition.

    USAW - The acronym for United States of America Wrestling

    USOTC - The acronym for the United States Olympic Training Center.


    Varsity - A team or group of individuals thought to be the best in their particular school or organization.

    Veteran (division) - A division in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition composed of wrestlers ages 35 and above. Age requirements may vary by competition.


    Warm-up - The action of warming the body up to prepare for physical work. This helps to prevent injury.

    Weigh-in - The event before a competition where wrestlers are weighed in order to determine weight classes. Weight classes are broken down by pounds in American competitions and kilograms in international competitions.

    Weight class - A division that categorizes wrestlers by body weight.

    Weight management - The process of maintaining one’s body weight.

    Whizzer - A type of tie that is used to defend leg attacks where the defensive wrestler hooks his arm over the top of his opponent's in order to put pressure on him and keep from being taken down. When in the standing position this technique is called an "overhook."

    Wrestling room - See “Matroom”.


    Zone - The call made by an official in freestyle and Greco-Roman competition that warns wrestlers to keep the action on the mat.

Check out this Wrestling glossary to find the sport-specific definitions for which you have been looking. From A to Z, we've got all the words covered.
Comments So Far: 4
History of Wrestling
Wrestling is the world's oldest sport. Learn about the rich...
Wrestling Rules & Regulations
The rules that shape the sport of wrestling are confusing to...
Wrestling Mat Dimensions
Wrestling mats have detailed specifications which help to...
close X