Doing anything for an extended period of time can be difficult for many. Action requires two parts. First, making the choice to act then second, and most difficult, the follow through. So why is this important when discussing Snow Canyon’s own Christian Case? The young man has been fiercely committed for well over 2300 consecutive days to a life of personal fitness.
Dedicated to wrestling Christian “Cradle” Case has a shorter frame, which for a wrestler is an advantage. Together with his impressive wingspan power and strength would become a natural by-product. However this would not happen over night but over hours and hours of a personal fitness routine that Christian had chosen for himself early on to remain in peak shape.
In the 5th grade the Warrior set for himself a New Year’s Resolution that, by all accounts, decimates most every other broken resolution set by other previously. Kyle Case, Christian’s father states, “He had always wanted to be healthy but he wanted to make sure he would always be improving. He would start with 10 push-ups and 10 sit-ups because that what he could do then but worked to 20 then 50 then 100 and that was the way that he kept going. It got to be a year then two years then three years, he has been able to channel that drive and motivation to always work on improving himself.”
“After being away from wrestling for a few years my dad and I talked and we decided that this was the time to do it, so I got back into wrestling during 8th grade and by balance was off and I was all over the place.“ The pedigree is rich with the Case family. Coming from a long line of successful wrestlers in the family from dad to uncles to grandfather, Christian had a wealth of resources at his disposal to learn from, be motivated by, and experience to lean on. However his work was cut out for him. He knew had to train.
“I found the best wrestler in the room and wrestled him,” Christian remembers. “By wrestling him as my training partner I kept getting better and better and better. Then the following year in 9th grade I wrestled for the High School team and made the Varsity Team at 106lbs. and closed out that year with a winning record.”
Kyle remembers of his son’s choice for a wrestling partner, “Christian intentionally picked this guy and he was good. Christian got bet up. He worked and worked and by the end of the year the team, voted him as the most improved wrestler. He really had dramatically improved, from not knowing much to winning matches and beating kids.”
For many wrestlers it can take several years to being to see numbers stack up in the W column yet for Case, he was able to string wins along rather quickly taking 2nd in Region and 5th in State in his previous season. With goals to improve yet even more Christian knows he has to stay focused throughout the off-season. “What makes it easier for me is that I know I have so many I can turn to.” Case shares, “I think it helps obviously for the technique but it is also helpful because it becomes positive motivation to live up to the family legacy.”
During Christian’s freshman year he found himself in a tournament wrestling at the 106 weight class. A difficult class in it’s own right with wrestlers cutting weight to make the class with tremendous experience and the first year freshman that are already light enough to make weight. While in the tournament Christian not only secured the W but secured the pin in 6.7 seconds also setting the fastest pin record for the school at the time.
With any success however comes the taste of difficulty. One can hardly appreciate the exciting moments of life without understanding the challenging ones. To this, Christian is no stranger. “One of my best friends thought my high school wrestling career, Cody Hafen, who also happened to take State last year, we had been training partners the whole time. In my sophomore year, his junior year, I was wrestling at 120 and he was at 126 but he decided he liked his chances better at 120 so he cut down and we ended up wrestling off for the Varsity spot at 120. He ended up beating me and that was pretty hard. After that I wrestled at 126 and for those few weeks it was probably my most challenging time.”
When the difficult moments come, and they do come, what an individual chooses to learn from the moment makes all the difference moving forward. Christian took a difficult experience and determined to learn from it realized that “the brotherhood and camaraderie is so important. I worked hard to get the Varsity spot at 120 and then one of my best friends came down in weight and took my spot. But after that, we were doing drills together and we were still very close if not closer because we go through the difficulties and challenges together. We make each other better. I learned that I could push myself harder than I previously thought I could and hold myself to a high standard. I learned that if I push myself even harder I can still compete at a high level.”
Mindy Case shares what she considers to be her most memorable time watching her son compete out on the mat. “The Iron Town Duels are a huge tournament in Cedar and he was wrestling at 126. He actually went undefeated going 10-0 and it was some hard core wrestling too. Our whole family was there, watching and cheering him on. It will always be my most memorable week of wrestling because he was able to go undefeated against some great wrestlers. Then was able to go undefeated his second year too.”
“My religion and my relationship with my Heavenly Father are the most important things in my life.“
Delving into the mind of a wrestler the picture can vary greatly. Some are intently focused on completely dominating their opponent, others are looking to clear their minds and remove all distractions around them and some simply feed off the energy and excitement. “Out on the mat everything happens so quickly, you have to trust and rely on muscle memory to get you through.” Christian shares, “I just think of weird random things like a language arts assignment I might have, but the one thing that does stick in my mind is get a cradle, because that is my move.” Hence the nickname, Christian “Cradle” Case.
The happiest moments of Christian’s life while out on the mat are those few seconds when his arm is being raised in victory. “Win or lose,” says Christian “I want to always keep moving forward and help others excel in their own experience.”
With both parents having served LDS Missions in Brazil, Christian hopes to carry that tradition as well but is more than willing to “serve wherever the Lord calls me to serve.” • HSSI