osakarob's blog

Yes, I might be too old....but.....


I've read several blogs here on Meetfighters by self-described older guys bemoaning that younger men won't take them on.

These seniors usually speculate, or even outright state, that younger guys are *afraid* of matches with older men because suffering a defeat to a senior citizen will somehow damage a reputation. Do the writers think that these young wrestlers are on their phones comparing post-match play-by-plays the way that teenage girls compare details after a romantic date?!?!

You’d think that common sense would disabuse them of that theory, but I’ve read it here several times.

Another touchy point seems to be that anyone would assume their match motives are anything less than pure athleticism. So much effort expended describing how they have never been fitter, stronger, or more ready to take on all comers – with reassurances that prospective opponents need not worry about unwanted sexual advances.

I totally get that if someone embraces wrestling or weight training later in life that they’ll get the same positive feedback loop that young gym rats get when they pack on muscle mass or hit fitness goals. It’s an aphrodisiac and you want more and more. You’ll assume that your improved BMI, sculpted abs, or improved cardio fitness entitle you to “run with the bulls”.

However, that’s a misunderstanding of the natural social boundaries of peer groups.

Walk over to your neighborhood basketball court and see how welcome you are to join the friendly pick-up game if you are over 30. Even if you can shoot 3 pointers with your eyes closed, you are an outlier to the peer group. Think you've got the skills to kick ass in Fortnite or Overwatch? Great. But is it wrong that college kids would rather game without you? No.

The challenge with being your 40s, 50s, 60s or 70s and wanting to fight tough younger opponents is that you are hoping these invisible boundaries will somehow vanish. But why would they? They don’t in other areas of life, do they? And that's ok. It probably isn't worth raising your fist in the air and complaining about how unfair it is that a guy young enough to be your son or grandson won't battle with you. Accept the declined invitation and move onto someone who will take you on.

I don’t bother sending messages to anyone more than about a decade younger than me, unless something in their profile suggests that we might be a good fit. Does that limit the overall prospective pool of opponents? Of course. But I'm ok with that. But I’d rather have realistic expectations than set myself up for frustration and resentment.

I'm sure there are other constructive pieces of advice for us to share so that the most senior members of this tribe can be reassured that there is a place for them in wrestling. Any thoughts?

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Last edited on 6/09/2018 8:18 PM by osakarob
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Comments (8)

redlandguy (189 platinum) 13 days ago

It depends on what you are looking for. If you are looking for a date, at the end of the day, you like who you like and that's it. The hard age barrier is a gay thing and it more closely resembles the attitudes on a dating site than anything sport related.

However, for a lot of us, this is a SPORT. I can and do train with 25 year olds even though I'm 48. You can practice with anyone (adapt force level and choice of technique to the size/skill/condition of your opponent.) You can do what your body will handle, and what your skills will allow. Guys who want to learn will learn more from trained opponents than they will from unskilled ones, though the practice with other beginners is helpful after you learn a new concept.

There is no "peer group" in a one on one sport.

There is no entitlement to wrestle someone who doesn't want to meet you but there is never an excuse to be mean, to be rude, to body shame, to be racist or to demean someone for wanting to wrestle you.

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Hardmatch (67 platinum) 13 days ago

(In reply to this)

Well said. I totally agree that manners are very important when declining a match. I’ve heard some real horror stories regarding how some guys will refuse matches.

I have always been open to wrestling all guys, no matter the age, race, build, etc I’ve had some very tough matches with guys much older than me that either pushed me or took me to school and taught me a lot.

It’s an unfair reality that we fall out of various guys’ searches the older we get, even though we still have the same desire and, in many cases, are in as good or better shape than we’ve ever been. There’s no point moaning about that though.

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Hardmatch (67 platinum) 13 days ago

Very well said. I started wrestling when I was in my late 20s, considered young then, and am now 56. Many younger guys would consider me to be "old". So, I have been on both ends of the spectrum. Some of the guys that are complaining about not being able to get young guys to wrestle them are still significantly older than I am so are probably more sensitive about perceived ageism than I am yet.

We all have our reasons when looking through profiles as to why we want to wrestle this or that guy. Even if a guy is strictly into wrestling, many have no desire to wrestle guys they see as being old enough to be their father or grandfather. It could be because they don't want to risk losing to an older man. It could be because they don't think that an older guy will have the stamina to give them a good or long match. In many cases, though, it's because they just prefer to hang out and wrestle guys their own age.

Many older guys are in incredible shape and could defeat most other guys, regardless of age. That still doesn't mean younger guys want to wrestle them. Trying to shame or guilt younger guys into wrestling you isn't going to help. They're either interested or they're not. Constantly bragging about how tough you are and/or moaning about how younger guys won't wrestle you because of your age can also put guys off. Let's face it, even with guys that love a serious battle, physical attraction and stats can be an important determination as to whom they will wrestle. I can look at various profiles where the style and interests are very similar to what I'm looking for but it's often the pictures and stats that make me more interested in wrestling some guys over others. It's natural.

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surrey71 (28 gold) 13 days ago

I echo the above comments, it’s most likely that guys want to meet opponents of their own age.
I’ve been lucky in meeting girls either side of my own age - some a little older, a lot a bit younger - they’ve all been excellent!
There’s always a couple I won’t meet again but some have become personal friends! End of the day - it’s a sport not a dating site - accept their decline and move on - we’vw S been refused for some (or no apparent) reason. It’s life - it’s a hobby - get on with it!

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John Fredman (9) 13 days ago

I fully agree with osakarob. There's one person in particular who continually bemoans the fact he does not get enough wrestling (which he often attributes to his age) and writes blog after blog about how great he is and open to wrestling anyone who will dare to take him on. I find it tiresome and makes me question the point of having blogs and that valuable space on the website is taken up by them. In that particular case, I think it's an abuse of the blog functionality as it is when other individuals use blogs as a form of advertising and post blog after blog repeating the same 'facts'. Of course, I can choose not to read the aforementioned blogs and it's not my website to manage so the above could be completely acceptable to the administrator and every other person on here.

Funnily enough, with the issue of age, I preferred older men to wrestle when I first joined around 8 years ago as they resembled most the men I admired so much on the UK's World of Sport. I even met my partner back then on this website who is quite a bit older than me.

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DCJobber (62) 13 days ago

Thanks OsakaRob and everyone for your comments. I agree with almost everything people
are saying. Osaka Rob mentioned "Fortnite & Overwatch". I assume those are video games. I have no idea though because none of my close friends play video games. If I see references to things I know nothing about in a guys profile, that sometimes tells me we won't have that in common to talk about before or after wrestling. I don't drink, so sometimes when I see guys want to go for a beer after wrestling, I make a mental note of that also. The more people blog and put in their profiles, the better we get to know them. That is good and bad. Another thing people do is change their profile frequently . Again, the more you change your profile and still nothing gives me a connection with you, the less likely I am to want to wrestle with you. If we post multiple blogs, the people that read the blogs will get to know us. You will see people put in their profiles, "move to the front of the line if _______". I think that is a much better way of getting interest. If you have more than 20 past opponents and you say nobody will wrestle you, you might be so old that your memory is going. Another fact is the more people that we ask to wrestle us, the more "NO's" we will get. I could go on and on about this topic, and I have discussed this with one of the older Gentlemen we are referring too. If there are recommendations in your profile, and we can see the number of past opponents because of the way meetfighters is set up, it becomes repetitive when you tell us "check your references to see if I am too old". The wrestlers that are interested have already looked at your recommendations and past opponents and probably have messaged you already. I prefer opponents over 50 yrs old, but that doesn't mean I want to wrestle everybody over 50. If you have good pics, Not much text is needed in your profile.

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Tynesider (78) 12 days ago

There have been a lot of good points made in these blogs. Personally I accept the age issue as a reality with no complaints as i know what i was like when I was young and what my thoughts about "old" people were. It wasn't shallow then and my preference to wrestle men around my own age now isn't shallow either; it is just a preference.

There is also the factor that i may just not want to meet someone regardless of their age. I'm sure that there are men on here that feel that way about me but it isn't a problem. I think it is a person's choice and they are entitled to make it.

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Sparrhawk (3) 12 days ago

Osakarob, you wrote a thoughtful post. I think it's a truth no one wants to admit, but your basketball analogy summed it up perfectly. If an older guy wanted to play hoops with a bunch of 20 year olds, he would be met with initial suspicion simply because he's an outlier and doesn't match the peer group. This could be overcome of course, but it doesn't change the initial reaction. Here on the internet, all we often go by is our initial reaction

If you think about it, the reasons are not that different than why some men don't want to wrestle women. They want to compete with others in their peer group and feel that submitting a woman (or older man) doesn't satisfy the desire to win.

Personally I have no problem with age differences. I am much more wary of a height difference. i would like to grapple any guy (no matter the age) who is under 5'11". Only when that limit is exceeded have I been wary of matches. We all have our own personal preferences.

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