Over the course of the last two months, two top contenders have failed to make weight for their respective fights. One of them is Kelvin Gastelum, the other is Johny Hendricks.
Gastelum failed to make the 170-pound limit for his supposed fight against Donald Cerrone at UFC 205. After tipping the scales at 177 pounds according to the New York State Athletic Commission, the fight was scrapped from the card altogether, and Gastelum was forced to move back up to middleweight. Hendricks, meanwhile, stepped on the scales at 173.5 pounds for his UFC 207 fight against Neil Magny, which resulted to him giving away 20-percent of his purse for the night.
Making weight is one of the hurdles that a fighter faces even before he or she steps inside the cage. Many tend to struggle, whether it is because of improper diet or incorrect methods of cutting. But for nutritionist Mike Dolce, it is the fighters’ coaches who should be taking most of the blame.
“It’s lack of credible coaching, lack of credible oversight,” Dolce said on the recent episode of The MMA Hour (via MMA Fighting). “They’re not working with teams that are truly skilled in proper nutrition, medical nutrition, therapy and weight management. We know exactly what time we have to weigh in. We know that months in advance.”
One of the methods that trainers usually use for weight-cutting is having their fighters burn off the excess water through lengthy sauna sessions. It is a practice that Dolce greatly disparages.
“The fact that athletes are still locking themselves in f—-ng — pardon my language — in 180-degree saunas is ridiculous. It is the most barbaric method of weight cutting known to man and the athlete is the one that suffers — not the coach who’s standing outside drinking a Coca-Cola and eating a cheeseburger,” Dolce said.
“They’re tough already. You don’t have to prove they’re tough by locking them in an oven. We don’t do that.”
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