The Health Scientist Podcast

Ep.17 David Nolan: Weight cutting strategies for strength & combat sports

David Nolan is based at Dublin City University where he coordinates research examining nutritional & exercise interventions targeting the preservation of muscle mass and function in older adults while also undertaking PhD studies focused on weight-cutting protocols in strength sports. On top of this he is head of performance at the Rugby Academy Ireland and a research officer for Aplyft as well as being the head coach and educator at Synapse Performance & hosts the Synapse Performance Podcast.

David graduated with a 1st class honours degree in Sport & Exercise Sciences from the University of Limerick. He has previously worked in a clinical exercise setting with MedEx Wellness & as a strength and conditioning coach with Kildare GAA amongst other teams & individuals. David has an avid interest in research and recently completed contracted research for Food for Health Ireland in the area of nutrition research, based in University College Dublin.

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Synapse Performance Website

Synapse Performance Podcast

In this episode we cover:

  • The importance of weight making in strength and combat sports
  • Long term and acute strategies commonly applied to cut weight
  • Different body compartments from where weight can be lost such as fat mass, body carbohydrate, body water, food residue etc.
  • The science behind water cutting
  • Surprising, real examples of major weight loss in the week leading up to a competition
  • How time to weigh-in varies between sports and has a major effect on the weight cutting strategy used
  • The importance of the regain phase between weigh-in and competition
  • Optimal strategies for fluid and carbohydrate regain
  • The potential effects of weigtht cutting on performance
  • The health risks associated with severe weight cuts
  • The many dogmatic practices that are used in weight cutting and the risks associated with the belief that a weight cut has to be hard.
  • The importance of self experimentation in weight cutting
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