Did you know that some sports leagues enforce weight limits for some or all members of their teams? This is especially common in wrestling, where athletes are divided into different categories by weight. However, it has also been seen in football for certain positions and even in hockey. And, while it may seem harmless to require players to be at a certain weight, it can actually be quite dangerous, especially if young athletes resort to dangerous methods to quickly lose weight.
These young athletes, desperate to meet or stay on the team of their choosing, will often do crazily dangerous things, like sitting in a hot sauna for hours, going without food and water- sometimes for days on end, or even sitting in a hot car, wrapped in plastic wrap. These measures may result in the temporary loss of weight due to the water they drain from the body, but they can also lead to heat stroke, electrolyte imbalances, severe dehydration, and many other complications and problems, sometimes even resulting in death.
For this reason, you absolutely need to know if “weight limits” are enforced on any sports league your child wants to get involved with. And remember, even if the coach tells you they’re not, check in with your young athlete from time to time to make sure what you were initially told was the truth. It’s typically smart not to let your child play on a team where his weight is going to be scrutinized and made into a huge and stressful deal, depleting the fun out of the sport in the process.
If you can’t get around it and your child does play on a such a team, focus on healthily keeping off weight and explain the dangers of these drastic water weight loss methods to your child to keep him safe!