Y’s Grappling Club welcomes newcomers

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    By Burke Jensen

    In wrestling, the goal is to pin the opponent. In the grappling club, students seek to subdue their opponent.

    Wrestlers and others interested in grappling can now improve their skills through the new BYUSA Grappling Club.

    Grappling is an art similar to wrestling.

    “In grappling, you try to get into a position where the other person cannot hurt you,” said Terry Gibson, 28, a senior from Dallas, majoring in health science and the club president. “It is different from wrestling because you”re not going for a pin but a submission hold.”

    The grappling club benefits students in several ways.

    Since BYU disbanded the wrestling program, wrestlers and other grapplers have had no avenue to practice their skills on campus.

    “The club is also a form of exercise without it feeling like exercise,” Gibson said. “Staying healthy to prevent problems from arising is important.”

    The club also provides an environment to meet new people and provides a healthy release from stress.

    The club invites wrestlers, judo and jiu-jitsu practitioners and anyone else interested in learning to come practice.

    Women are welcome as well. Gibson said two women committed to come next time.

    “The neat thing is that you don”t have to pay an arm and a leg – like some studios here in Provo,” Gibson said.

    Because the club has the potential to injure others, BYUSA was most concerned with liability, said Shawn Ram, 25, a senior from Oakland, Calif., majoring in English and BYUSA”s clubs and organizations vice president.

    “With the club, there is a risk of someone getting hit the wrong way, getting mad at another person and taking things too far,” Ram said.

    The club follows a “one-strike-and-your-out rule” to prevent such occurrences. If a student does intentionally hit someone, he or she will never be allowed to participate again.

    “Terry did an excellent job on their charter,” Ram said. “They (the club members) worked with risk management on campus, and if they are okay with the liability issues, then we (BYUSA members) are as well.”

    “It is the best club on campus,” said Michael Pease, 25, a senior from Taft, Calif., majoring in sociology and a martial arts physical education teacher. “It gives wrestlers and other grapplers a place to train.”

    He said he definitely plans to keep attending the club.

    The club has no formal instruction, but there will be an overseer to ensure people do not get hurt. Participants are free to come and go as they please.

    The club meets every Wednesday between 6 and 8 p.m.

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