Sports

Kickboxing leads Rieck to wrestling, perhaps MMA

mikayla

MIKAYLA RIECK (center) works on her kickboxing, which helped her during this past wrestling season at North. – Submitted photo

A teenage daughter fighting with her mom is nothing new.

Sheboygan North’s Mikayla Rieck, however, often finds herself kickboxing her mother … in classes.

“We kind of butt heads a little bit sometimes,” Rieck said. “Sometimes we can’t work together because we get a little angry at each other. But in the end, we’re all good.”

That’s swell and all, but the next – obvious – question in our phone conversation was who’s the better kickboxer?

“That’s a good question,” Rieck said. “My mom is sitting next to me right now and she chuckled. I’m going to say me because I’m more agile.”

The senior was 14 when she started kickboxing. She says she went to one class to try it out and fell in love with it.

The next thing Rieck knows, she’s joined the Raiders’ wrestling team last season because her kickboxing coach, Jimmy Zidek, became an assistant at North and she also wants to fight in MMA (mixed martial arts) when she gets older.

“So it was a good way to see if I liked the ground game,” Rieck said.

And it was not hard for Rieck to join a boys’ sport, either.

“It was just normal for me,” she said. “Everybody kind of welcomed me with open arms.”

Kickboxing helped Rieck in wrestling because she was used to moving fast on the mat and could position her feet in the right way to help her get more angles for better takedowns.

But needing a few more wins Saturday to qualify for the state wrestling tournament – sectionals were held this past weekend and results can be seen at http://www.sheboyganbeacon.com – was the last thing on her mind when this all started.

“I did not think I’d even make it to sectionals at all,” Rieck said.

But she did, practicing wrestling and then going to kickboxing five days a week.

Rieck also started to help teach kickboxing last year when staff asked her to assist with elementary school children.

Teaching slowly transitioned into helping out with adult classes, and she’s even had to work with people as old as 70.

“Usually they don’t care,” Rieck said.

Rieck, who will wrestle on the women’s team at Lakeland next season, eventually plans on getting into harder training for kickboxing with the goal of competing in a MMA cage someday.

And there’s no fighting mom about that decision, either.

“She really wants me to fight and has been supportive,” Rieck said.

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