Beat the Streets Toronto

My Favourite Wrestling Trip

Jayden Here!

Wrestling has provided me many opportunities to travel, meet new people and learn not only about wrestling, but different cultures and histories of different places. Beat the Streets Toronto has facilitated many wrestling trips and allowed me to have many amazing experiences. Through these experiences I have grown so much and become a much more well-rounded person and wrestler.

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My all-time favorite wrestling trip is my trip to the country Georgia last summer.

Under the direction of Valentin Kalika, our group of wrestlers from all over North America were privileged to train in a beautiful facility in Georgia with amazing coaches and with multiple different partners throughout the camp. This trip ignited my passion for wrestling and taught me so many new things. It also sparked my interest of travel and seeing new places. I didn’t realize beforehand that I would love Georgia as much as I did and I really didn’t realize how much history and culture I would learn on this trip.

            What I really loved about wrestling in Georgia was the great LOVE, RESPECT AND DEVOTION the Georgians had for this sport. It was not only part of their culture and lifestyle, it was part of their soul. While in Georgia we got to attend an International tournament. It was like no other sporting event I have ever attended. The intensity of the passion, pride and emotion of the spectators in the crowd was so energizing and inspirational. They love wrestling and their love for it echoed and intensified my own. It was the first time I was surrounded by hundreds of people who all lived and breathed this sport like I do, and I felt right at home. Well some of the spectators did take it a little ‘far’ when one of Georgians lost. But that chair smashing made for a great story.

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            I also felt at home in the training room in Georgia where the qualities of being 100 percent focused and committed to being your own personal best, being disciplined in your technique and committed to learning and growing through trail and risk taking was encouraged and fostered in a really positive environment.  Everyone there wanted to grow and learn and challenge themselves. They also wanted to help others to do the same as well. My partners were intense and driven, but we also laughed and smiled together. But we really focused on technique and I LOVED that.

            The diversity of coaches at BTS Toronto has given me a wide base of experience with different international styles of wrestling right in my own province. And this really helped me when I went to Georgia.  The different techniques and style of the Georgian wrestling I experienced there weren’t as big of a shock or challenge for me because of my exposure to all the different coaches at BTS Toronto.  The strong technical base the diverse BTS Toronto coaches had  given me meant I could learn the moves quickly and effectively helping me to make the most out of my Georgia experience.

I am really looking forward to travelling again to Georgia to train and explore more of this country with a soul deeply in love with wrestling.

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.

TAKE YOUR TIME GETTING BACK

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.

GOT TIME? USE IT

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.

FIND YOUR SILVER LININGS

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

LET GO OF YOUR FEARS

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.

Welcome to the Beat the Streets Toronto Team Dejah and Simi! : Sponsored by Canada Summer Jobs

This year Beat the Streets Toronto Received the Canada Summer Jobs Grant for 6 staff. We are pleased to introduce the first two of our six summer staff: Simi Jayeoba and Dejah Slater

Back in 2016 I met these two amazing young women, they were both very green to the sport of wrestling, brimming with enthusiasm and full of potential. Little did I know that they would embark on such awesome high school careers. Dejah would become a multiple time national champion and multiple-time OFSSA champion while Simi would excel in her academics averaging mid-to-high 90s throughout academic career and achieving academic scholarship standards and gaining acceptance to the McMaster University Science Department. 

These two ladies great role models to our current Beat the Streets Toronto student-athletes. They embody the ideals that we share with our student athletes. Ideals like working hard, having a strong mindset, perseverance and dedication to your sport and education, a deep focus in working through your tasks and achieving your goals. 

It is our pleasure to have them return and work with us this summer through the Canada summer jobs grant program. we are very excited about the work they're going to be doing and how it's going to impact Beat the Streets Toronto in a positive way moving forward. We are very confident that they will put all that they've learned over the years into their efforts this summer and we're excited about the results. 


Welcome back Dejah and Simi!

Beat the Streets Toronto Summer Mentorship Recap!

This summer the Mentorship program expanded its outreach by not just following academic achievement, but by also mentoring our student/athletes into the workforce. During this past summer, Brea Rodgers, Arely Torales, Ana Mendez all worked with BTST. The job/internship included clerical work, research and community outreach.  We here at BTST strongly believe that getting real work experience is beneficial to overall growth of an student/athlete. Giving high school and first year university students life skills will open doors that were not previously accessible. Additionally, by employing BTST student/athletes we were able to expand our outreach to various communities throughout Toronto. This was achieved by using promotional tools like having our students write articles on an online platform and use guerrilla tactics like handing out flyers and promoting at festivals and events.

Conversely, through our partnerships with employment agencies like LEF, Learning Enrichment Foundation and VPI Work Solutions we were also able to help other members of the BTST family to find meaningful employment like, LEF daycare services, Milestones, Party City and the KEG.  Again, by working on the three pillars of wrestling, academics, and life experience students will be prepared for the challenges that lie ahead. Overall it was a great experience for the kids. Here are some testimonials.

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Arely Torales:

I enjoyed working and learning with BTST. I was able to get out of my comfort zone and learn something everyday. It also beat flipping burgers.

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Brea Rodgers:

I feel that my resume will be so much better now that I am able to add BTST as an employer.

Beat the Streets Toronto Recommends : Kids Sport Assistance Program

At Beat the Streets Toronto we understand that participating in Sports these days can be a huge financial ask for families. If you are finding it difficult to support your child’s sporting interests we suggest you look into applying for grants and assistance through Kids Sports Ontario. They will assist with up to $250 per child. If you have any questions feel free to contact us directly.

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A Step in the Right Direction: BTST Supports Girls Wrestling

New Jersey Adds Girls Wrestling to High School Sports

Women’s Wrestling is definitely on the rise across North America and Beat the Streets Toronto definitely supports the growth of Women’s Wrestling! This is a huge step in the right direction for our friends to the south. Canada Wrestling has long supported the sport and we are proud of the fact that we have girls high school wrestling in all of our provinces!

Way to go Jersey, we look forward to the great many competitions you’ll be hosting in the future as a result of this development!

Neal Ewers,
Beat the Streets Toronto