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The news site of Staley High School

Staley News

The news site of Staley High School

Staley News

Wrestlers Weigh In On Cutting Weight

Coaches Share Importance Of Safe Weight Loss
NeKerra Neel
Sophomore Joeanne Dinh wins a match at girls wrestling state Feb. 23.

Cutting weight in wresting can bring confusion and strong feelings. Wrestling coaches have their own philosophies about the practice, and wrestlers have different opinions and thoughts about cutting.   

And while some wrestlers love the sport, there are conflicting feelings about cutting weight.  

“It affects you mentally and physically,” junior 100-pound wrestler Alaina Bigham said. “Physically, you’re tired, and mentally you’re just like, ‘I don’t want to do this.’” 

Cutting weight is not a requirement in the sport, but there are times athletes must do it.   

“At the start of the season they do a fat test to see what weight class each wrestler is eligible for. We take those numbers and sit down with each kid, and we discuss with them where they want to start the year at,” Bears said.  

Wrestlers commonly cut weight because they’re above their average weight and can’t wrestle the weight class that they were assigned.  

“I hate cutting weight; it’s very tiring but also rewarding,” sophomore 105-pound wrestler Joanne Dinh said. “Wrestlers should have a choice when cutting weight. It’s your body; do what’s best for you.”  

There are times when wrestlers drop weight classes because a teammate has been bumped up or down. Typically, there can only be one person per weight at tournaments, so they do what they can to make weight.  

 “It’s a part of the sport,” girls wrestling coach Sherry Butts said. “It’s a necessity for some people. It affects wrestler’s moods, feelings, hunger.” 

Butts said athletes must cut weight safely.

“Changing diet or maybe taking sugar out, and how your body reacts to sugar. If they’re cutting weight incorrectly, it could cause damage internally as well,” Butts said. 

Coaches encourage athletes to cut weight safely for the health of their body.  

“The kids that do it the right way, they stay strong, they stay good in practice,” boys wrestling head coach Elisha Bears said. “And the kids who do it the wrong way, it ends up hurting them as far as practices go.”  

Both wrestlers and coaches have different opinions and ways on how they think wrestlers should cut weight or whether they should cut weight at all.  

“There are different methods,” Bigham said. “Layer with clothes, make sure I’m in hot rooms, keep the heat on in my car. Eat lots of fruit and eat less — and a bunch of liquids.”    

Not all coaches believe in wrestlers cutting weight. Some don’t require their wrestlers to cut weight at all.  

“What we always talk about is we’re not cutting weight, we’re modifying our workouts and modifying food intakes and the types of food we intake,” Bears said. 

While sometimes necessary, cutting weight can affect wrestlers’ performance.  

“Cutting does affect performance because you can be tired or dehydrated,” girls wrestling coach Christopher Johnson said. “If it’s within a couple of pounds, it really doesn’t have an effect on performance. If one person chooses not to make weight, they don’t wrestle that night.”  

Rules In Place To Guard Against Weight Cutting In Wrestling

The Current State of Weight-Cutting in Combat Sports

Weight cutting in combat sports: What is it and how can you minimise the risks?



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