WAITE PARK -- The belief that wrestling is only a boys sport is being taken down day by day.

Jake Clark is the owner and wrestling coach at Wrestle-Jitsu in Waite Park. He says he's noticed an increase in young girls not only coming out for the sport, but having the skill sets.

We have a lot of these girls who have older brothers that have wrestled or their dad's have wrestled. So they've grown up around the sport but have never really had an opportunity to get onto the mat

He says wrestling clubs like his continue to be popular and young girls are proving they can hold their own in a boys sports.

Things have changed a lot in the last 10-12 years. Now the girls have opportunities with their own tournaments or they compete with the boys.

Clark says he has about 8 girls in his program ranging in ages from 5-years-old to high school age. Avery Mack and Skylar McLennan are just two of his students excelling in the sport.

McLennan says she likes having Clark as a coach.

He helps us learn moves so we can take first at nationals.

Earlier this month Mack took first place in her age group at the Minnesota USA Wrestling tournament in Rochester, while McLennan has taken home here share of hardware.

However, Mack says it's not all about the medals but rather just having fun.

It's a lot of fun.

Clark says he's glad he can provide the opportunity for young girls to learn the sport and thinks this is the start they need to compete at a higher level.

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