2 Pound Rule Promotes Healthy Growth in Wrestlers

Kelly Pien, Opinion Editor

Starting the week of January 13, wrestlers will be allowed to remain in the same weight class they have been in during the season even if they gain up to 2 pounds.  The allowance address concerns about healthy growth rates for teens.

“They’re high school kids, they’re growing,” wrestling coach Bob McLaughlin said. “They give them 2 pounds in the middle of the season to allow for growth.”

Junior wrestler Eric Monasevitch said, “If they’re always having to cut weight, sometimes you may not get enough nutrients.” According Monasevitch, wrestlers normally try to cut anywhere between 5 to 12 pounds during the season in order to be able to wrestle in a certain weight class. Monasevitch said they are “always trying to get a lower weight class.”

“We try to slim down and try to create more lean body mass,” McLaughlin said. Neither Monasevitch nor McLaughlin said they were worried about the potential effects on wrestlers’ health due to losing weight during the rest of the season.

In order to lose weight, Monasevitch said that the wrestlers have to watch what they eat. They often eat lean protein, fruits, and vegetables. He said it could be a struggle to lose weight. Monasevitch said the 2 pound allowance will give the wrestlers some leeway in their diet. “It’s not usually ‘eat more or drink more.’ You have a little break,” he said.

According to McLaughlin, the 2 pound allowance is used in schools across the nation and has been around for about 50 years. He expects that all his wrestlers will take advantage of the 2 pound allowance.

However, senior wrestler Grant Smith plans to use the 2 pound allowance to move to a lower weight class, where he believes he will be more competitive. Smith intends to lose weight by following a stricter diet and exercising more.

Smith is not worried about his height being affected. “I’m short either way,” he said.