Freestyle and Greco-Roman
There are two Olympic/International
styles of wrestling, Freestyle and Greco-Roman. With one major exception, the rules of the two styles are almost identical:
In Greco-Roman, a wrestler may not attack his opponent's legs, nor use his own legs to trip, lift or execute other
moves. The wrestler must wrestle from the standing position without the top of his head against his opponents chest. This
is called passivity, and will result in a call of "CONTACT" by the official. The official will say "contact red" or "contact
blue" before actually indicating a passivity by holding an open palm hand in the air with the offenders color indicated. Note
that in either Freestyle or Greco-Roman, a wrestler who continually avoids contact may be called for fleeing the hold. This
results in a caution and a 1 point award to the aggressor.
In Freestyle, both the arms and legs may be used to execute holds or to defend against attack. If legs are used
as part of the attack by an aggressor, no points are scored and the wrestlers are returned to standing. Only one official
needs to see the leg usage for the move to be nullified.
If legs are used to prevent a move, the attacker receives whatever points are gained, a caution point or points, and choice
of position. If a throw from standing is blocked, the attacker receives 2 points plus the position choice. If a move on the
mat is prevented, the attacker receives 1 point plus position choice. In either case, the offender receives a single caution.
Freestyle is similar to the "Folkstyle" wrestling, but with different scoring, match procedures,
and strategies. Freestyle and Greco-Roman place little emphasis on control, while Folkstyle, control is very important. In
Freestyle, wrestlers are brought to their feet after about 15 seconds of no scoring. Since control isn't important, the bottom
wrestler isn't expected to do anything but stall. At the college level, Folkstyle control-time equate to extra points.
Another difference related to control is the ability in Freestyle to score points without having control of your opponent.
Some moves such as tilts, front headlocks from the knees, and crotch lifts while under attack can score continuously without
ever gaining control.
Slips are another major difference between Freestyle and Folkstyle. In Freestyle, the attacker is not penalized for attempting
a move provided he can make it to his knees (belly facing the mat) on the mat after a failed attempt. Also, for this reason,
the attacker's move does not end until there is a slip or the referee blows the whistle. The wrestler being attacked must
actually take the move away by reversing direction or preventing the attacker from making it back to his belly. Simply stopping
a move with the attacker exposed does not constitute an exposure. Current rules allow the wrestling to continue after a slip
with no points scored to the person on top.
PAWF tournaments are held under the sanction of USAW, the U.S. national wrestling governing body. All wrestlers must attend
a PAWF qualifier and place in the top four in his/her age group in order to qualify for the State Championships.
Wrestling is contested on a mat, with a nine meter circular competition area.
There is a band, a one-meter passivity "zone" on the inside of the edge of the nine meter circle. This is close to the
mat edge, and an area where wrestlers start being encouraged by officials to stay in the competition area. The official will
indicate using the term zone plus the color of the offender if wrestlers move into the zone area. A wrestler who fails to
immediately move out of the zone can be called for passivity.
A wrestler who is in the zone and moves out of bounds under an immediate attack by an opponent will receive a fleeing-the-mat
caution, loose 1 point, and also loose choice of position. The only exception to this is if the wrestler is actively trying
to being driven out and the attacker "pushes" rather than actually attempts to gain an advantage.
are three officials for every international style wrestling match, a referee (on the mat) plus a chairman and a judge. For
PAWF events, we try to have three officials on every mat. The judge sits directly across from the chairman, and indicates
by hand how they interpret each scoring move.
The officials award points on a majority vote. At least two of the three officials must agree on technical points and falls.
It is the chairs decision on a score only when the referee and judge differ in their calls. The chair may, however, request
a conference when there is a question on the score.
For a Fall to be scored, there must be an agreement between two of the three officials. The confirming official does not
need to see the call, only agree that the referee was in the correct position to see the fall.
must not interpret point scores. This means the coach may not yell out points (you should get 3) or yell out that there is
a potential for a penalty or passivity. If there is a question, the coach can not approach the chair, but may request a meeting
at the table with the mat chair. Depending on the level of competition, this meeting may or may not be allowed until after
Should a coach verbally or otherwise abuse an official or not obey mat rules, he/she will first receive a yellow card (go
to the stands) or a red card (go home).
must wear a one-piece singlet, in the color assigned to them (red or blue). At PAWF qualifiers, a wrestler may be allowed
to wear other colored singlets, but must be at the discretion of the Tournament
Director and/or State Chairman. In all cases, the dominant color of the singlet must be either red or blue at major events,
including the PAWF State Championships. Wrestlers must wear wrestling shoes and must carry a handkerchief or paper towel.
on the age group and sanctioning organization, matches can be from two 1 minute periods with a rest to one five-minute period
without rest. For local PAWF competitions, Bantam, Novice, Midget and Schoolboys are
now (1) three-minute period. Cadets, Juniors, Women and Open division matches
consist of (2) two-minute periods with a 30 second break between periods. Overtime for both age groups is 3 minutes.
At the start of each bout, the referee checks for fingernails, wetness on the skin, skin infections, and for the handkerchief
before starting the match. The wrestlers then shake hands with the referee and with each other before the whistle is blown.
The match starts with the wrestlers standing on their feet. The wrestlers attempt to take their opponent down to the mat
to score points. Wrestling also occurs down on the mat, known as "par terre." If no points are scored after approximately
45 seconds, the less aggressive wrestler will be called for passivity and give up choice of position. No points are awarded.
At the end of each bout, the arm of the winning athlete is raised. The wrestlers shake hands with the referee and with
Points are awarded for performing techniques or moves within the rules. If a wrestler is not able to pin his/her rival
during the match, he/she must score at least three or more technical points to win the bout in regulation time.
If neither wrestler has scored three points at the end of the regulation time, the match will go into an overtime period.
The first wrestler to reach three points will be the winner. If neither scores 3 points, the winner will be the wrestler ahead
in points, or at the decision of the officials if there is a tie.
Selection criteria, if the bout is tied at the end of overtime, the match can be determined by cautions. The wrestler with
more cautions and warnings for passivity will lose. If the marks are equal, the officials select a winner based upon activity.
If a wrestler scores 10 points more than his opponent at any time, the bout is stopped and the competitor with the 10 point
lead is the winner by a technical fall.
A bout can also end by an injury default, a forfeit or a disqualification. Disqualification must be the result of a "flagrant"
attempt to injure an opponent, or as the result of three cautions. Flagrant conduct must be witnessed and agreed upon by all
three officials on the mat.
Takedown - occurs when a man takes his opponent to the mat from a standing position. This is worth one
point, but can be worth three if the opponent is brought down onto his back in a position of exposure (danger), and five if
a high amplitude throw is involved.
Exposure - turning an opponent's shoulders to the mat. Once the line of the back area breaks a 90-degree angle,
points are scored. This can occur both from the feet and on the mat. A wrestler who holds his opponent in a danger position
for five seconds will receive one extra point.
Note that some moves such as a gut wrench and an ankle lace can only be used once before another scoring move must take
place. However, a 1 point hold down is considered another scoring move. This happens in the case of move which starts as a
gut wrench but stops for a 5 count with the back exposed and then returns in the same direction. Moves without a body lock,
such as the front headlock from the knees or a crotch lift can be repeated over
and over in succession.
Reversal - when the man underneath completely reverses his position and comes to the top position in control, he
has scored a reversal, worth one point.
Escape - when an athlete works to come out from the bottom position (after being under dominant control) and gets
to his feet, facing his rival, he has scored an escape, worth one point. This can only be awarded if there is an active attempt
by the top wrestler to hold the bottom wrestler down, and if there is hand attack as the wrestler escapes. Note that this
score is seldom given.
Passivity - There are no longer disqualifications for passivity in international wrestling. The officiating team
can call an unlimited number of passivity calls. Wrestlers will be permitted to place the passive opponent in the down "par
terre" position or continue the bout in a standing position after each passivity call.
Wrestlers are paired off for the preliminary round according to a numerical order determined by a drawing
of lots during the weigh-in. Wrestlers weigh-in with their singlet on but no shoes. There is an attempt made at PAWF qualifier
tournaments when possible, to not have wrestlers from the same team wrestle each other in the first and second match.
Athletes are then paired off against opponents in their group in each following round.
Each wrestler must lose two matches to be eliminated from the tournament. Bouts will continue to be paired until there
are 3 wrestlers remaining. The remaining three wrestlers are then pulled to the other end of the bracket and a round-robin
is paired. The wrestler with the most match classification award points between the three will win the competition.
Scoring Rules & Terms
A. Classification Points:
Winner Classification Points:
Fall or Pin:
Both shoulders held on mat, match ends (Worth 4 classification points)
Technical Fall: 10-point margin, match
ends (Worth 4 classification points)
Injury default: Athlete can not continue to compete, match ends. (Worth
4 classification points)
Decision: The athlete who scores the most points in a bout and wins. (Worth 3 classification
Loser Classification Points:
Loss by Fall or Pin: Loser receives 0 classification points
Loss by Technical Fall: If
loser scored at least one point during match e.g. 11-1 (Loser receives 1 classification
point). If loser does not score a point during match e.g. 10-0 (Loser receives 0 classification points).
Loss by Decision: If loser scored at least one point during match e.g. 6-4 (Loser receives 1 classification point). If loser does not score a point during match
e.g. 6-0 (Loser receives 0 classification points).
B. Match Scoring Criteria
Takedown, Reversal, Hand-to-hand Exposure, Escape
1 extra point: High amplitude throw from mat or holding man on back for five seconds. Note: Another scoring move
must take place before another hold-down can take place. Also, the count must be visibly indicated by the referee during the
2 points: Exposure such as a roll-through or a takedown then exposure
3 points: Takedown to immediate exposure from feet; high amplitude throw without danger
5 points: High amplitude throw to danger. Normally the wrestler throws his/her opponent above the waist.
Regardless of the number of possible combinations of points, only the highest point move can score on any one move sequence.
C. Penalty Calls
Illegal hold without
consequence - 1 point plus caution
Illegal hold with consequence - 2 points plus caution
the mat - 1 or 2 points plus caution
Fleeing the hold - 1 point plus caution