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3acoachinwyo

Weight cutting as a tradition.

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I am curious if any of you would care to share your opinions as I have watched some of the elite college wrestlers over the past couple of years do what has traditionally not been done with any success, and do so with a great amount of success and that is, just say to heck with cutting weight, not only do I not want to cut weight, but I am going to keep moving up year after year (insert Kyle Dake and any others that I am forgetting to mention by name)

 

I have a very dear friend who is convinced that the old tradition of telling kids, that they will be more competitive at a lower weight is the way to go, and is extremely hesitant, (I won't say that he will not listen) but very hesitant to believe any other way will lead to success.

 

We have a new head coach, and the first thing out of his mouth to our team was, "I don't put much stock in weight cutting, in fact I would rather see you bulk up, eat healthy, and get bigger and stronger, than see you cutting weight"

 

Is it fair to say that those wrestlers that are bucking the trend and moving up in weight classes are just that much better than everyone else, and they are an anamoly, or is this the direction the sport is going? I think that my son would actually wrestle for this guy, and I don't think I can say the same for other coaches. I know that my wife would prefer that if he does wrestle, that he not cut more than say 3 to 5 pounds from his very small frame.

 

Our coach's opinion was bolstered when he came back from the NCAA's last year after having spoken with Jordan Burroughs, who apparently stated that he hated cutting weight, and once he got to college, he quit cutting, and just hit the weights, and the good nutrition.

 

What do you all think?

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I think I was just chastised for making a similar thread two days ago. Not that I care, I like this topic because I believe cutting is overrated. I mean in reality it's just circumventing the rules that are supposed make wrestlers be the same weight when they wrestle. Packing on some pounds with a couple hours in order to have an advantage. I'm glad we see more and more guys that aren't "buying in"(sorry skikayaker) :lol:

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As is often the case when dealing with complex issues, there is no simple answer. The bottom line though is that cutting weight sucks, and has caused many people to quit the sport. So from a coaching perspective, it's healthy to support a culture in which you discourage cutting weight, because more athletes will find the sport fun and stick with it. As a corollary to this increased participation and desire to stay in the sport, many will find great success and the program will benefit. From an individual perspective, sometimes cutting weight does help an individual. If you can only make the starting lineup by cutting, that may be the only way you gain valuable experience which can help you in future years (in which you might not actually be cutting). Kyle Dake is an interesting example because this is probably the first year he has wrestled in college in which he hasn't been a big cutter. At 141 and 149 he was huge, and was a very big cutter. At 157 he was intermediate, and now at 165 essentially doesn't cut. But you can't really use him as an example that works for everyone. He's one of the best college wresters ever. Same with Burroughs. Sure he went up to 165 and had success......but he's also undefeated on the international level and a 2x world/Oly champion. In short, he's a freak.

 

Also, it depends on what level of wrestling you are talking about. If you are talking about kids.....then cutting weight is stupid and leads to burnout with almost no benefit whatsoever. At the high school level I still think cutting a ton has very little benefit compared to the negatives, given the level of overall competition. Cutting a lot of weight while very young often guarantees that a kid won't stay in the sport long enough to reach their highest potential. No real need to cut weight in high school. In college, depending on the athlete and his body type and the need of the team, there can be a real benefit to cutting weight. And then at the international level, with very few weight classes and day before weigh ins, finding the right weight class can be extremely important.

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I can count the number of guys who gave up cutting weight and had phenomenal success on my fingers. To count the guys who had phenomenal success and cut weight, I would need a whole notebook. Not saying it is right, wrong, good, or bad either way.

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I can count the number of guys who gave up cutting weight and had phenomenal success on my fingers. To count the guys who had phenomenal success and cut weight, I would need a whole notebook. Not saying it is right, wrong, good, or bad either way.

 

 

While I don't dispute your anecdotal evidence (in fact I would tend to agree with it) there is no evidence that cutting weight has a relationship with success; it may be a completely unrelated variable. The fact that most wrestlers "cut weight" would result in most wrestlers enjoying some success - they represent a percentage of the broader population and I suspect that if an accurate assessment were done we would find that those who cut weight and are successful are proportionally represented in terms of "success"...but they would be a segment of the broader population who are a whole lot more miserable.

 

I would think that good weight management habits is the best course, e.g. don't carry excess weight does serves no purpose in promoting athletic performance . And of course, guys will cut excessively to find a place in the lineup. While I understand this latter reality, I think it is one of the nastier problems with our sport. If our system went to more of a European club format (or even the NAIA tournament format) we would have a healthier sport. That would mean teams can wrestle more than one guy at a weight in a series of tournaments that comprise the season, instead of dual meets where your lineup is constrained to a limited number of participants at specific weights.

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Cutting to get somewhere, where you can fit into the lineup is an overriding reasoning that will always be part of the sport.

 

 

Unless we eliminate lineups based on the one-guy per school idea...which the NAIA and Midlands has already proved possible.

 

So yes, if we refuse to change, there will be no change.

 

If we want to fix the problem the answer is embarrassingly simple and clear. The question isn't whether we can fix the problem but rather, whether we want to fix the problem.

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I don't see how you can maintain a dual format with 2-3 guys at any given weight or varying combinations on different teams.

 

 

Well that's it - that has to change; dual meets may become a rarity or even a thing of the past. How can anyone think that changing something as fundamental as the culture of cutting of weight would come without significant change on other fronts? To change the culture of cutting weight the sport may have to lose this need to pit one team against another in a dual format. Sacrilege? Perhaps. But consider for a moment the format employed for the Olympics. So it obviously isn't impossible, but the change will come with attendant sacrifices.

 

But much like the realities of gun control, previously unfathomably changes will only ever happen when the will of the many are mobilized and galvanized by the occurrence of a seminal event that focuses their attention. In our world of wrestling I fear it will be the death of one of our young people due to their participation in cutting weight.

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I don't see how you can maintain a dual format with 2-3 guys at any given weight or varying combinations on different teams.

 

 

Well that's it - that has to change; dual meets may become a rarity or even a thing of the past. How can anyone think that changing something as fundamental as the culture of cutting of weight would come without significant change on other fronts? To change the culture of cutting weight the sport may have to lose this need to pit one team against another in a dual format. Sacrilege? Perhaps. But consider for a moment the format employed for the Olympics. So it obviously isn't impossible, but the change will come with attendant sacrifices.

 

But much like the realities of gun control, previously unfathomably changes will only ever happen when the will of the many are mobilized and galvanized by the occurrence of a seminal event that focuses their attention. In our world of wrestling I fear it will be the death of one of our young people due to their participation in cutting weight.

 

 

How many tournaments outside of States, Nats, Olympics get much of a crowd? Beast, Ironman do alright. A few others but basically nothing. And by going to tournaments as primary means of competition there will be that many fewer home events for the locals to attend.

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How many tournaments outside of States, Nats, Olympics get much of a crowd? Beast, Ironman do alright. A few others but basically nothing. And by going to tournaments as primary means of competition there will be that many fewer home events for the locals to attend.

 

If the debate is about maintaining our vast fan base (insert cynicism here) then I would respectfully suggest that we have already lost that one - the sport is shrinking rapidly at the collegiate level in terms of supported programs. Rabidly protecting a system that has brought us to this point seems to be an odd way of saving it, IMO.

 

Wrestling has its issues - and cutting weight is one of them. If the argument is that we can't simultaneously contemplate a restructuring of the way in which the sport conducts itself on many fronts because it may hurt our currently "wildly" successful system, then I fear that we should just put a fork in the sport right now...and get ready for March Madness on the hardwood floor.

 

I fully understand the allure of the dual meet format for fans; but that's not enough to save what remains of our sport (just look at the trend in dropped programs). The sport is going to have to change in order to survive - and I say everything should be on the table. For example...

 


    [*:alej80un]What if the sport reinvented itself as a true weight management sport (instead of weight cutting) and fully integrated woman's wrestling into existing collegiate programs?
    [*:alej80un]What about morphing folkstyle into a "kinder" version of MMA?
    [*:alej80un]What about penalizing a coach, e.g. fire him, for even letting a kid try to drop well over 15% of his normal body weight?
    [*:alej80un]What about using a jamboree-type competitive format where teams come together for a tournament and bring all their guys and cluster them according to their weights on that day, i.e. no predetermined weights (and thus, no cutting of weight would be feasible)?
    [*:alej80un]What about changing the mentality of the sport from winning to participation, i.e give non-starters as many chances to take to the mat as the top guys on the team?

There are a ton of possibilities that may alter the current dynamics of the sport; but things are going to have to change for any of that to happen. If you are married to the current system the future is pretty clear...and bleak.

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cutting works great for some........ I could cut and not be affected much...but I would say MOST do better not cutting much. My point is ....it's an individual thing some do great cutting......some suck when cutting. You have to know what works for you. That being said.....cutting SUCKS!

 

npope........the tide SEEMS to be changing on programs being cut....programs are being added let's hope it continues

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Cutting to get somewhere, where you can fit into the lineup is an overriding reasoning that will always be part of the sport.

 

This is the part of weight cutting I don't think is that bad, within reason. Of course coaches, parents, and the wrestling authority have to do their best to make sure it's healthy.

My opinion is though that the team may benefit by cutting because they can put their best wrestlers in the lineup, but what kind of proof could there be that cutting actually gives you an advantage.

For each person it is different, and for each person each day is different also.

You could also fill a notebook with weight cutters who also under perform on a regular basis. I would argue even more than the other way around.

If a wrestle struggles at 149 then cuts to 141 and has success, that doesn't mean cutting weight made him better. It could mean that his competition was easier, or the styles better suited him.

Anyway, I can't prove that there is no real advantage to cutting, and many of you were big cutters so you will defend it. I am glad that wrestling at least it seems is showing that more and more guys aren't cutting.

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I recall Nickerson, with all the ability in the world, determined to NOT cut weight in the manner that he had done all of high school with success. He wrestled up at 132 at a senior level tournament in the off season. He was manhandled by visually bigger and stronger wrestlers, actually tearing his rotator cuff. Never to be the same wrestler again.

 

Now, did this happen because he wasn't cutting weight, or was it because the other wrestlers had an unfair advantage by cutting weight?

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I recall Nickerson, with all the ability in the world, determined to NOT cut weight in the manner that he had done all of high school with success. He wrestled up at 132 at a senior level tournament in the off season. He was manhandled by visually bigger and stronger wrestlers, actually tearing his rotator cuff. Never to be the same wrestler again.

 

Now, did this happen because he wasn't cutting weight, or was it because the other wrestlers had an unfair advantage by cutting weight?

 

Using your logic Scribe, that would mean that no one who ever cut weight has had a rotator cuff injury because, as it seems here, it can only happen when a bigger guy jumps on a smaller guy.

 

C'mon, that's flawed rationale.

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Of course coaches, parents, and the wrestling authority have to do their best to make sure it's healthy.

But they don't always exercise that opportunity to do what is in the wrestler's best interest.

 

Consider the level of violence in the NFL and the current safety-sensitive environment. RGIII has his leg all but ripped to shreads and he avoids the doctor and runs back out on to the playing field. Any number of players have come out and said that they play a violent game and that the powers that be are meddling too much - "Just let me play."

 

Given what you have said, it would seem that you would be a person who would say that all of these new rules about concussions etc., shouldn't be there because the players can decide whether they need that kind of protection from their own decision making abilities. Alternatively, many suggest that the NFL needs to impose rules like the concussion tests because players need to be protected from themselves and making bad decisions. Which side are you on?

 

There is a mountian of empirical evidence as to the damage that excessive weight loss and dehydration does to a body. Your solution is to let the kid make his own decision...a kid that in all likelihood isn't considered mature enough by state laws to be able to even have a drink in a bar...but let's let him make his own decisions about his health. Hhhmmmm.

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I know what I saw and it is what it is. A combination of lean and strength are optimum in this sport. Always will be.

I believe Dake is operating at full normal body fat these days - not cutting at all. I am sure gonna be sorry to see him end up on the disabled list before the end of the year ;)

 

It's not the size of the dog in the fight.....

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He is a full sized 165lber, who is adding mass by growing. He goes up in weight between seasons because he is growing out of the previous weight. Every season they have had a difficult time keeping in his early season weight class.

He's not cutting is he? Isn't that what we are debating - the value of cutting? If growin into your weight class is your proposal then I fear I have been wasting signficant amounts of my day at this keyboard debating you on a matter that we already would seem to agree upon.

 

Boy, do I feel foolish.

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They need to just have mat side weigh-ins. Cut all you want, but you don't even get a minute to recoup. Get on the scale, get on the mat.

 

No one likes cutting weight, only idiots brag about how much they have cut in the past. Cutting weight isn't something to be proud of its stupid. It isn't healthy and could be eliminated with mat side weigh-ins.

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Now you are putting words in my mouth. I specifically said outside sources need to decide what is healthy, because these kids often can't.

Why would you then lead to the conclusion that the player should decide his fate in concussion cases? I'm not going to go into a long debate with you over the helmet to helmet rule because this is a wrestling forum.

I think you completely missed out on my point which is that I do not like weight cutting, and the only place I see it as useful is to crack the lineup. There is no way to eliminate it, so they have to do the best they can to control it and make sure that they are not cutting excessively.

Perfect world everyone has the same body fat percentage and can magically find a starting spot on a team. Not reality.

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There is no way to eliminate it

 

Eliminate weight classes so there is no weight to make - simple - problem gone.

 

There are any number of ways of eliminating the motivation for a kid to cut weight to fit into a given weight class; you are just refusing to acknowledge those alternatives. What you are saying is, at the fear of once again putting words in your mouth, there is no way to eliminate cutting weight...assuming we keep the current system in tact.

 

Gotta get outside that box, man.

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You are assuming that this is a possibility. The rules for weight classes are also there for safety so that Ruth does not break Megaludis in half. UFC began without weight classes and they quickly outlawed it due to safety.

I'll gladly discuss anything like this with you, but it's very unlikely that wrestling would ever be able to shake weight classes. so my statements above are indeed based on our current system of creating a level(safe) playing field.

 

The reason it will be tough to eliminate while there are weight classes, is the belief that there is a physical advantage to doing so.

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