Fathers form nonprofit wrestling club for kids

Dog Pound Wrestling, a nonprofit, volunteer-run club, was started to help prepare kids to compete in competitive wrestling.

Started by two fathers, Tim Reitz and Todd Smith, the group is held year round.

Members of Dog Pound Wrestling, with ages ranging from 6 to 12, have competed in many tournaments from Bloomsburg to Maryland. They’ve even had the opportunity to compete in the Keystone State Games, which are held in Harrisburg.

Since it is a nonprofit organization, the group runs on monthly membership fees, fundraisers and sponsorships from local businesses.

A year ago, Reitz and Smith were working with first-year wrestlers to build skills, and the club took off by word of mouth.

“Wrestling for a child is a hard sport to learn, which involves very specific movements, but also requires knowledge of body mechanics and balance. Often times in large youth programs, children do not always get the attention they require,” Reitz said, who also is a coach and president of Dog Pound Wrestling. “Here at Dog Pound Wrestling, we focus on individualized attention and attempt to have one coach per pair.”

He also said that the coaches not only instill good sportsmanship during practices, but also during tournaments and matches.

The club holds open practices, allowing parents to stay and observe.

There are no requirements to join the group, and wrestlers can have little to no experience.

The group meets Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at the Golden Dragon Family Training Center, 431 W. Third St.

For more information on the group and how to join, contact president and coach Tim Reitz at 651-3766 or vice president and Coach Todd Smith at 971-0840.