Athletic Appetites: Saber Wrestlers on Maintaining Weight

Updated: Jan 22


Sweat and blood drips. Bones pop. Skin breaks out in ringworm or impetigo. Wrestling is a physically and mentally demanding sport, both on and off the mat.

Wrestling is a winter sport but practices begin in the fall and athletes need to keep their weight in mind before competing.

Athletes compete in the same weight class. They can’t gain weight or lose weight and they have to stay either under or at the weight they are told to be at. Their diets range from not eating enough to eating more than needed.

132 weight class wrestler Ryan Kramer said, “In wrestling, we have to lose or gain weight pretty quickly and it is not always the easiest.”

“I have skipped meals for days before just to make weight and have even spit in a cup before. It takes a lot of willpower to be able to lose weight for wrestling because we all want to eat but we can’t,” added Kramer

Fellow wrestler Tate Stockman (120 weight class) knows that weight checks are part of the sport:

“Maintaining weight takes discipline and, like most things in wrestling, a plan. Lots of people think wrestling is a bunch of guys who don’t eat and are cranky because they can’t eat or drink anything. It’s actually full of a bunch of determined and disciplined guys who have to fight in every aspect of the sport.”

In the end, trying to keep or cut weight can be difficult. (Harold)Wrestling is a hard sport to compete in but the feeling of victory the athletes have when they pin an opponent is worth it.

Jadyn Sheppard, Central Publications Staff

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