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Wrestling Parents – Do NOT Force Your Young Wrestlers to Cut Weight — 7 Comments

  1. My nephew is on his 4th year of wrestling, he will be 10 y.o. in February. The kids does not have an ounce of fat on him but my sister and his coaches want him to drop 5lbs( 67lbs down 62lbs)., ie – no carbs and feeding the child salad, and the dreaded sauna

    We grew up in a very competitive household, but isn’t this extreme for a 9/10 year old? I have two children of my own and they are older. I would have them wrestle up oppose to cutting weight. If they had pounds to give, yes – but that is not the case here.

    I would appreciate a response.

    A very concerned aunt

    • I think cutting weight at 9 is a little young. I personally would bump up a kid to the next weight class. The good news is he is is only dropping 5 pounds, which is less than 10% of his body weight. There is a correct way to drop weight and starving a kid and sauna is not the way to do it. He should focus on eating proper foods and drinking lots of water.

      Their is a time to drop water weight, if necessary, but it should be done by water restriction. This basically means you still drink water, like a couple of ounces every four hours. This way your body still gets water it needs to function. Water restriction should be done 24-36 hours before a weight in.

      My main concern with your nephew dropping weight, would be burnout.

    • I would tell your sister to find your nephew another coach he sound irresponsible. My son is 10 years old and has wrestled since he was 4. he has never cut weight and it has been my experience that kids that do cut burnout, and lets face who could blame them, wrestling is hard enough without cutting weight. on the other hand if your nephew was overweight I would say he should lose weight but not in a temp weight cutting way. the goal should be that every pound you walk in the match with is a strong usable pound not an extra pound of fat that serves no purpose. anyway find a new coach. cutting teaches avoidance of tough opponents and develops into bad behavior as the kids get older.

    • Bubba:

      it really depends on how much weight you are cutting. If you are only 11, I would focus more on becoming a better wrestler than I would at cutting weight at 11. I wouldn’t pull more than a couple of pounds until you get to high school

  2. Anyone considering making their child younger than HS age cut weight is a monster.

    As an adult I’m still dealing with the disorders that come with being an 8 year old forced to cut weight. As success rises, so do weight cutting expectations. I recall seeing 68.5 on the scale and being told I needed to be 60 for national competitions.

    Starving your kids is neglect. No one gives a crap about winning state in kids wrestling when you’re older – trust me – but I can still go an entire day without eating and not even notice.

    I shared these experiences with another individual for about 12 years on the same kids and HS team. At times his burden was even heavier. I recall splitting an ENTIRE orange one day as our lunch. He is now heavily overweight and a recovering alcoholic. His self control had been totally screwed after his basic needs were used to manipulate him.

    “Starving myself makes adults praise me more!”

    -your child’s brain

    Wrestling parents: Get some perspective.

    • I absolutely agree that most little league wrestlers should not cut weight. While I definitely think weight cutting at a very young age can cause health issues and burnout, I’m not sure weight cutting can be tied to your friend being overweight and a recovering alcoholic. Thanks for your feedback.

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