***Editor's noter: I first met little Mikey Kulcycki when he was a scrappy little 5th grader at St. Albert. From the day he stepped foot on the CYO mats(CYO was the elite youth league long before the likes of OAC/OHWAY/OYL). One thing was clear to me that this 'kid' was destined for greatness. As I roam wrestling events now and catch the 'stare' of Kulczycki, many outsiders who do not know him would assume he was a 'Brands brothers' type of coach. Truth is from the time he could step on the mat Mike has always had a certain concentration and attention to detail for our great sport, but rest assure he has the sense of humor and personality it takes to 'keep things real' and upbeat positive for all he comes in contact with.
When you have the resume, passion, and knowledge that Northeast Ohio great Mike Kulczycki has one would assume to find him in the coaching chair of any Big Ten school, leading a next tier NCAA program, or at any elite high school program he wants. That it is exactly why that passion and knowledge that has led Kulczycki to where he is today; and that is molding lifestyles!
In November of 2011, Mike Kulczycki started TWFOC (The Wrestling Factory of Cleveland) in Lakewood Ohio, minutes away from his high school alma mater St. Edward, where he was a 2X OHSAA state champion and 4X state place winner. He was also a 4X NCAA D1 qualifier and All-American at the University of Michigan, under Ohio native Joe McFarland.
With the factory being so close to St. Ed HS many naturally assumed it was a training ground for current and future eagles only, but that is certainly not the case.
"I have kids from all over Northeast Ohio," said Kulczycki. "I have kids out West as far as Toledo and kids from Far East side like Geneva, Painsville, Perry, Mentor, Kirtland, Chesterland , Strongsville , North Royalton , Medina ,Brunswick , Akron, Massillon , Columbus."
In the close to five years TWFOC doors have been open, the enrollment has steadily grown once the wrestling community has realized what Kulczycki and staff has to offer.
"TWFOC supplements training that the wrestler is already getting at his current club or school. Or, TWFOC can be your sole training center. The wrestling community of NEO is starting to realize that any wrestler can train at the factory any time, ALL are welcome."
So what exactly does TWFOC offer that other programs or clubs don't? Especially in a time when even the averages programs/schools have well above average staffs due to the strength of Ohio wrestling past and present.
I'm a full time coach. Most coaches coach clubs and than their high school or teach and coach. Most coaches are part time. Or coach from November thru March
"For me coaching and wrestling is my life, it's my passion. I have been around the sport for almost 30 years now and since I started wrestling it's been my obsession. I am a full time coach, I coach year round and don't have any part time or full time job except for coaching at TWFOC. All I do is think about wrestling and how I can help these kids."
Since TWFOC is not a in season club Kulczycki wants to be everyones assistant coach. He wants to help kids from everywhere. As long as they are willing to work and listen and are coachable, then he is 100% in!
"I do understand that most high school and youth coaches have full time jobs and families and other obligations and that is where I come in to help them out. Your high school doesn't have an off -season club? Then come train with me, do u want to travel and wrestle freestyle in the off/season than train with me."
The Wrestling Factory of Cleveland has proved to be a one of a kind program right now. It is geared towards wrestlers of all ages and ability levels who are seeking 'the Edge' over their opponents. Kulczycki is quick to point out that TWFOC is not competing against your current city, youth, junior high, or high school program.
So what exactly is 'the Edge' that Kulczycki's vision and factory can give your wrestler?
"Our thoughtfully structured workouts will accommodate and/or assist your high school or local club practices. The Wrestling Factory of Cleveland offers 24/7 hands on personal coaching and mentoring for wrestlers who consistently train year round and desire to be the best in the state, country, or world."
They keep a personal file on each and every wrestler to monitor their progress and development throughout the year. The TWFOC staff will help structure and assist with a wrestling specific strength and conditioning program for each training cycle your wrestler may have, monitor and evaluate your diet, and meet with each wrestler individually on his/her training log for the season. In addition to practice, TWFOC will provide private training lessons or small group lessons for each wrestler wanting to focus more on their individual needs.
Coach K looking on as his students of all ages go through a TWFOC conditioning workout.
Exactly what type of training does The Factory offer?
We offer year round training and we break it down in 3 training cycles
Pre-season / In season / Post season
They break the practices down by age , weight, and experience
3 different Levels
High School / Junior High
Novice 1-3 years of experience
They also has monthly factory trained weekend camps for wrestlers who travel from Michigan , PA and other parts of Ohio.
TWFOC also runs summer camps along with freestyle training camps to prepare the wrestlers for Fargo
Coach K this past weekend at the Michigan Grappler Fall Classic in Battle Creek Michigan.
TWFOC had several place winners, including GFC champ Nick Kiussis and runner-up Cam Edwards.
Coach Kulczycki is not the only hands on regular coach at TWFOC. He has aligned himself with coaches from many different generations, those who had success at the highest NCAA level and youth coaches who have been on the scene for over 40 years. The newest addition to TWFOC is St. Ed/Virginia alum Nick Sulzer. He was a 3X All-American while at Virginia and has returned home to Northeast Ohio to coach at the Factory full-time. Other coaches include local youth coach legend Chuck Schill(Uncle and youth coach of Ohio great Roger Chandler), Brian Edwards and Mike Czarnecki. Although Kulczycki and Sulzer run all the practices themselves, the likes of Schill, Edwards, and Czarnecki assist and help out in factory practices.
The Factory is currently running their Gold membership promotion which you can find more about at www.twfoc.com.
Camp dates include:
Factory Camp Dates
2016 - October 28-29 / November 25 / December 28
2017 - January 13-14 / February 5th / Feb. 17-18 / March 5
You may text Coach K to reserve your spot (216) 262-0696
"It is important to have a coach that can be with you for many years," said Kulczycki. "From youth, junior high, high school and beyond."
.......There is no off season at the factory.
The lights are always on at TWFOC for those who are looking for 'The Edge'.