Cutting Weight for Youth Wrestling – How Young is too Young?

what is the correct age to be cutting weight for wrestling?  Wrestling is one of the most demanding sports you can find.  One of the aspects about wrestling is that it is sometimes necessary to lose weight so you can wrestle a lower weight class.

The same applies to many other sports where there are weight classes, such as boxing, judo, and mixed martial arts fighting.  When it comes to cutting weight, most people think about wrestling when they hear those words.

Is Youth Wrestlers Cutting Weight ok - Learn how to cut weigth for wrestling

youth wrestlers

What is Cutting Weight?

Cutting weight is the act of reducing a person’s body weight to wrestle a certain weight class for a wrestling tournament or a dual.  There are safe and unsafe ways to cut weight.

I’m not going to cover how to cut weight for wrestling.  I can tell you that it is usually done by reducing calorie intake, working hard in practice, and restricting water intake.

The term cutting weight is for short-term weight loss.  This means a wrestler will lose weight and gain it back right after a weigh-in.

How Young is too Young to Cut Weight?

This is a topic that a lot of people are passionate about.  In my opinion, it really depends on the kid.  I found a great article by Steve Fraser from Kansas USA wrestling about cutting weight.

I’ve seen kids as young as eight years old lose weight for wrestling.  As a general rule, I’m not a big fan of anyone under the age of twelve losing more than a pound or two.

When a child reaches junior high,  the child should make the decision of how much weight to lose for wrestling.  If a wrestler is going to cut weight for wrestling, he/she should learn how to do it the correct way.

In my opinion, there is one time when a youth wrestler should drop weight.  If you have a child that is 5-12 years old and they are obviously over weight (BMI over 27), then as a parent you should definitely have your child lose weight.  I would do this by changing your families eating habits.

My guess is that if your child is overweight,  that he/she is not eating a healthy diet.  I would NOT recommend starving a kid to make weight.

Advantages vs Disadvantages of Cutting Weight

I would be lying if I said there were no advantages to cutting weight. There are some definite size and strength advantages over a wrestler who does not cut weight.

What I can say is that if a wrestler cuts weight at a very young age, he/she will most likely burn out and quit wrestling before high school.  Also any parent that is starving a kid for wrestling could be impacting the child’s growth.

Hope You Enjoyed the Article

In the end, this is a decision that parent and kids have to make.  I just hope I gave you something to think about before making that decision.  Do you have some feedback?  We would love to hear from you.  Post  a comment and let us know what you think.

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