BTST Student Posts

Getting Past Injury

Every athlete dreads the thought of getting injured.

Many injuries are often preventable and things like warming up and strength training are important ways to reduce the risk of injury even further. But unfortunately, injuries still sometimes rear their ugly head.

January 4 2017

January 4 2017

The first major injury that I overcame certainly came with many challenges but ultimately taught me a great deal about overcoming adversity in sport. On January 3rd 2017, I broke my ankle while training. The next day I received a plate and screws to aid in my journey to recovery. For 3 months I was using crutches and it was about 6 months before I could set foot on wrestling mat.

That time was not all smooth sailing. I struggled with loneliness due to no longer spending time with teammates. More than that, my biggest fear was that I would not be able to return to wrestling.

But ultimately, I can say that my injury experience was a beneficial one that gave me  knowledge just like all of the many ups and downs on the journey of life. Here are some of those lessons.


The urge to fire a double again may be strong but the best thing that you can do for yourself is to take your time. I’m not blameless in trying to rush my recovery and admit to doing a few push-ups in a cast. In time though, I realized I needed to slow down and give my body time. Our bodies are amazing and have unbelievable capacity to heal. With diligent rehab and patience they will do just that - heal. So be patient, you will be fine.


Wrestling needs discipline . Between after school practice and morning workouts, wrestlers can get a little busy. And while the busyness of something you love isn’t an issue, it is a cool thing to be given time to try new things. Challenge yourself to make the extra time you have meaningful to you. Whether that means straight As, conquering a monster list of must see movies, or making new friends, make it a priority.


There is yin in every yang and there is a rainbow in your cloud. It is okay to not feel great about you injury but push yourself to recognize what the experience has given you. For me, it was more time with my family and time to reevaluate the pressure I often put on myself. So keep your chin up, you won’t find a rainbow if you’re looking down


Lastly, but most importantly, LET GO OF YOUR FEARS. Your thoughts make or break you. The good new is that your thoughts do not control you, you control them. So let go of your anxieties about not being able to return or not being as good. Think instead about what you can love about your current moment and how strong and able you will soon be again.  Once you do return to the mat, let go of the fear of getting hurt again. When I began wrestling the summer and fall after my injury, I was constrained by the fear of getting hurt. This fear and the guarded wrestling it produced worsened my performance and ironically put me more at risk of injury. Fear like that will never help you. As hard as it may be, forget what happened and move forward.

Take a deep breath. You will be more than okay.

Summer 2019 is going to be the best one yet

Dejah here!

I would like to start of my first post by saying thank you Canada summer jobs for this amazing opportunity. This summer is looking very exciting for me and I am thrilled to work alongside Beat The Streets Toronto in hopes of spreading what they’re all about.


I am really looking forward to learning the different strategies and tactics that come with this job position, from writing blogs like this to creating posts on instagram. With this day and age I find that everything happens online in terms of advertisements and promoting brands, being able to have this opportunity to better my knowledge on all this is extremely beneficial to me and my future.

This summer there is going to be a variety of blogs that I will be posting, from little cooking tutorials for those who are looking for healthy meal ideas to relatable wrestling stories. There will be a little something for everyone. I couldn’t be more excited!

A Summer Job to Remember

Hello world!

This introductory blog post officially kicks off my summer experience working with Beat the Streets Toronto and coming to understand the ins and outs of a non-profit organization.


First and foremost, I would like to thank Canada Summer Jobs for allowing me to gain such an experience. Through their support, I am able to not only work alongside great people towards a great cause, I also get to overcome some of the financial strains of being a university student. I first became involved with Beat the Streets Toronto as a curious 10th grader looking to get as good as possible at wrestling. Their community practices became regular for me over the next three years before I began attending McMaster University and now I again get the chance to be involved with them.

There are a great number of things that I am anticipating to gain from my work with Beat the Streets Toronto. I am certainly looking forward to being able to learn just what it takes to run a non-profit organization. For instance, I’m eager to understand what goes into the process of researching and applying for grants. In addition to this, I’m really looking forward to being able to creatively share lessons I have learned as a young wrestler. There are so many important ways that wrestling has helped me grow and expand my understanding of things and this summer gives me a chance to share those lessons through blogs post such as this one. Moreover, to be able to have a tangible role in helping BTST get more of the attention it deserves through their social medias is another exciting task to look forward to.

“I am confident that this job experience will leave me with knowledge and memories I will carry with me beyond this summer.”

I have big plans for my future as an engineer and gaining an understanding of how to run an organization will be a great skill to have in my toolkit. Learning how to increase my productivity and deliver content efficiently will help me presently as a student in university. Also, practicing how to express myself through venues such as social media and blogs in a way that is of value to others is a powerful asset to carry with me.

Overall, I am very hopeful to what the rest of my summer working experience with Beat the Streets Toronto has in store for me and am sure this will be a summer to remember. Wishing you the best of summer and make sure to check back with me soon!

All the best,

Simi Jayeoba

Thoughts from Sayeed Shad, BTST student

Hello my name is Sayeed Shad and I am 17 years old and my native home is Iran. I have only been in Canada 2 years in total and I have learned a lot about North American culture since I have been here. Everything is different, food, religion, and lifestyle.  This is ok for me because I want to adapt to this way of life.


The one thing I do bring from Iran to Canada is my love for wrestling. In Iran, wrestling is the number 1 sport. The best wrestlers get a lot of attention and are celebrated like heroes. I always wanted to join wrestling back home but I had a lot of responsibilities with taking care of my sister and mother. When I got to Canada I was able to be freer and have more time to pursue my interests.

I tried wrestling at other facilities but I didn’t feel right until I found Beat the Streets Toronto. When I met coach Sanchez and the other coaches I felt very welcome. Coach Kris is a master of what he does and I really enjoy his knowledge of ground wrestling. My goals with the sports is to one day make the Olympic Team here for freestyle wrestling. I want to make to the big stage and Beat the Streets Toronto is helping me along the way with making me believe that I can do it. I just want to thank coach Neal Ewers for his great work with Beat the Streets and hope it continues to be such a great organization.


Sayeed Shah

Thoughts from Afik Ocak, BTST Student


Wrestling is part of my life, I love wrestling and I love to wrestle with my friends. Wrestling is ingrained into my lifestyle, I can say wrestling has given me a lot and I am grateful. Being a refugee from Turkey it has been hard to adjust to the Canadian Lifestyle. This is especially hard because I am on my own in Canada and my family is all back in Turkey.  Wrestling and my mentor Mr. Sanchez have really helped me feel like I am part of a family which is important to me. It makes me feel like home when I am with my fellow Beat the Streets wrestlers. 

Beat the Street Toronto is great. They teach you technique that is at a very high level. Sometimes it is hard to keep up but it is part of the fun to learn new things from some very great coaches. It is also a place where I have made a lot of new friends not from my community. I have friends here from all over the world at Beat the Streets Toronto.

One thing that stood out to me was the Wrestle the North event ran at Nathan Phillips Square. It was an amazing event to see downtown and have people walk by and enjoy wrestling. It was like the events in Turkey when they run them outside. The Wrestle the North event made me want to train hard and participate next year.

Thank you so much Beat the Streets Toronto, 

Akif Ocak
BTST Student

How does discipline relate to sports

No matter where you go or what you do for a living you will always come across discipline. Now you might be wondering how does discipline relate to sports? Kids don't know when to play and when it's time to get work done and that's okay because kids are supposed to have fun. Sports is the best way to help teach your children some simple discipline skills like getting to practice on time, or not talking while someone else is talking.

Discipline is no fun but that's the point when someone is being disobedient the best way to correct their behaviors is with discipline. You will find the most discipline in sports because sports are all about doing it right. In any sport your kid joins if they’re not doing the techniques right they will not succeed, they’ll get frustrated, and probably even throw a mini tantrum and so that's where discipline comes in. sometimes in order to be successful you have to risk it for the biscuit, you have to be able to make sacrifices and discipline yourself.

Discipline helps you stay active, organized, have more self-control and stay focused. Those skills don't only apply in your sport they can also come in handy at school, work, and even at home. Once someone knows how to be disciplined they gain respect from others because being strict with yourself is very difficult. If you want to reach your goals, being disciplined with yourself is the way to do it.



“Why Is Discipline Important | 8 Advantages & Benefits.” Mind Controversy, 4 Mar. 2018,

How to motivate your child

One thing you will struggle with as a parent inevitably is motivating your child in life. Involvement in combative sports like wrestling, kickboxing, Brazilian Jui Jitsu, etc. will not only motivate them within the sport on the mat but also in life off the mat.

One of the many benefits of mat sports are that the sport takes place individually and athletes are responsible for themselves and their actions. However there is also an overlaying sense of team within the sport, in which being a part of that team you also have a responsibility to them. You win and lose as a team despite the individual athletic performance, this helps develop healthy relationships full of support and encouragement as your child will experience every aspect of sport. Your child will be a part of something bigger than themselves and this will develop a sense of drive in them.

Your child will become a very driven human being and will learn how to cooperate and collaborate with others to achieve goals. To be successful and grow in combative sports you have to work with others, your coach, trainer, training partner, etc. This ability to function in a team will help them in sports, yes, but also in school, work, and life in general, helping them to become the future leaders of tomorrow.


Why is Exercising Important for my Kid?

According to the American Heart Association, every child should be getting a minimum of 60 minutes of daily exercise. Research shows that when you exercise your risk of stroke can reduce by 27%. Wouldn't it be lovely to know that your child has a less chance of getting a stroke later in life? As a parent, you want the best for your children. Encouraging your children to do sports can reduce many diseases and increase their health.


Exercising can prevent many different diseases. Cardiovascular disease is one of them. Cardiovascular disease is the result of the build-up of plaques in the blood vessels and heart. This can occur when you have too much fat building up inside of you. When you exercise, you sweat which burns body fat and releases toxins. Blocked blood vessels can lead to heart disease which in fact, one in every three deaths is from heart disease and stroke.


I have been engaged in sports since I was 7 years old. I am thankful of that because now as I'm older I feel strong and healthy. Sports can bring many benefits to your child like discipline, combating disease, improves their mood, in my case sports brought a wonderful joy in my childhood. Sports also help build bone density when you're younger and most importantly it helps in developing life skills like organization, discipline, self-confidence, and self-defense.Trust me on this, sports is an amazing way to keep your children active in a positive and productive way. Beat the Streets Toronto has a great program for your children, but I guess you won't truly understand until you try it so without further ado come and join BTST’s sports camp and after-school program.



7 great reasons why exercise matters. (2016, October 13).
Retrieved from

Heart Disease Prevention. (2018, July 13).
Retrieved from

How does cardiovascular disease affect the body? | Heart Disease. (n.d.).
Retrieved from

How to Help Prevent Heart Disease - At Any Age. (n.d.).
Retrieved from -At-Any-Age_UCM_442925_Article.jsp#.W1U41dJKjIU

The Top 10 Benefits of Regular Exercise. (n.d.).
Retrieved from

How Combative Sports Build Body Positivity

Involvement in combative sports completely changes the relationship that you have with your body.

Through training, the growing knowledge of what your body can accomplish transforms how you view your body into something positive. You become very in touch with your body, what it needs to perform at its best, what it can do, and what it will be able to do in the future as you get stronger. You fall in love with challenging yourself physically and strive to see those challenges not only met but surpassed.

There is such a healthy environment surrounding combative sports which just radiates with body positivity. Strong role models who love their bodies, who have worked hard and appreciate the strength, agility, flexibility, endurance, etc. that their body has developed. The opportunity to see yourself develop physically gives you something to be proud of, as your body is able to do more and more things that once seemed impossible for you.

As an athlete who has worked so hard to get to the point of health at which you are at then pushes you to healthier life choices. You have worked so hard to get to where you are and you want take care of yourself and your body.

Combative sports cultivate healthy relationships between people and their bodies.

Sports: Developing your Kids into Good Human Beings

As a parent, I’m sure you want your kid to grow up to become a good person, who is successful and happy. Research shows that kids who are a part of sports do better in school than kids who are not. Involvement in sports also increases the likelihood of secondary and post-secondary graduation.

The valuable skills learnt by kids in the participation of sports are transferable into the business world as well as the academic realm. To be a part of a sport is to be a part of a team and you learn how to work with others to achieve your goals through hard work and grit. The ability to do such things will assist your child tremendously in their career.  

BTST students are still full of smiles and energy after a challenging 2 hour workout on the beach!

BTST students are still full of smiles and energy after a challenging 2 hour workout on the beach!

Especially when they are older this healthy lifestyle will benefit their stress levels as well as improve their overall mood with their body’s release of dopamine through exercise. Kids involved in sports are happier and healthier, they are also more likely to continue to live active lifestyles later in life.


Sports: Ensuring your Daughter’s Success

Just like any parent, you want your children to be successful later on in life. Having your daughter get involved with sports raises her chances of becoming a successful career woman.

EY research reveals that 94% of senior business women holding C-level positions, was actively involved with sports at some point in their life, and over 50% was involved at a university level. This demonstrates the undeniable connection between success in sports and success in business.

To have a successful career, self esteem is incredibly important. Believing in yourself and knowing your value, not only as an individual but also as a part of a company. Sports give girls numerous opportunities to develop high self esteem; when they win a match/game, when they set a goal and achieve it, etc. Girl’s who believe that they can, do.

Your daughter will be healthier and happier. Girls who are involved in sports are less likely to develop osteoporosis and breast cancer later on in life. Your daughter will not only be in better shape but her involvement in sports will reduce stress and help her to feel happier overall. She will create friendships with her teammates and that is a very special bond, also knowing you have a team behind you takes the pressure off and allows you to just have fun.

BTST female students taking center stage at the Wrestle the North “Girl’s Edition” wrestling event at Nathan Phillips Square July 2018.

BTST female students taking center stage at the Wrestle the North “Girl’s Edition” wrestling event at Nathan Phillips Square July 2018.