Methods of Body Mass Reduction by Combat Sports’ Athletes
Authors: Ciro José Brito1, 4, Aendria Fernanda Castro Martins Roas2, Igor Surian Souza Brito3, João Carlos Bouzas Marins3, Claudio Córdova4, and Emerson Franchini5
Affiliations: 1Federal University of Sergipe. 2Izabela Hendrix Methodist University. 3Federal University of Viçosa. 4Brasilia Catholic University.5University of São Paulo.
Acceptance Date: November 27, 2011
The aim of this study was to investigate the methods adopted to reduce body mass (BM) in competitive athletes from the grappling (judo, jiu-jitsu) and striker (karate and taekwondo) combat sports’ athletes in the State of Minas Gerais Brazil. An exploratory methodology was employed through descriptive research, using a standardized questionnaire with objective questions self-administered to 580 athletes (25.0±3.7 yrs, 74.5±9.7 kg and 16.4±5.1% of body fat). Regardless of the sport, 60% of the athletes reported using a method of rapid weight loss (RWL) through increased energy expenditure. Strikers tend to begin reducing BM during adolescence. Furthermore, 50% of the samples used saunas and plastic clothing, and only 26.1% received advice from a nutritionist. We conclude that a high percentage of athletes use RWL methods. In addition, a high percentage of athletes use unapproved or prohibited methods, such as diuretics, saunas and plastic clothing. The age at which combat sports’ athletes reduce BM for the first time is also worry, especially among strikers.
Keywords: martial arts, weight loss, athletic performance, diuretics.