Wrestlers typically feature mesomorph and endomorph body types.
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Participating in wrestling won't completely transform the size and shape of your body. However, wrestlers do tend to have physical similarities. Being of a particular body type as a wrestler provides a performance advantage, as you're able to move around the mat, get into positions, and combat your opponent more effectively. Research suggests, however, that body type varies between wrestlers of different weight classes.
Compared to those who don't participate in wrestling, wrestlers possess a greater body mass and have a lower height-weight ratio, which means they fall into the mesomorph or endomorph body types. Wrestlers with a mesomorph body type are known for their lower-fat and more muscular build, despite their medium bone density. Endomorph body types naturally store a higher percentage of fat, have wider waists and shoulders and feature a large bone structure. Because of the high number of calories burned when wrestling and the strict focus on nutrition, despite their relatively larger size, wrestlers of both mesomorph and endomorph body types typically have lower body fat than non-wrestlers.
Significance of Type
According to Dr. Samuel D. Callan's 2000 article in the "Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research," body weight and body composition has been shown to impact the performance of wrestlers. Wrestlers must continuously combat opponents for two- to five-minute periods with only 60-second periods of rest in between. Because of the extreme intensity of the sport, they burn a high number of calories during training and competition; this supports a low body fat percentage. The more advanced and experienced a wrestler is, the greater tendency they have to be of a low body fat percentage. However, because of the strength and power that wrestlers need to physically overcome their opponents, they carry a significant amount of muscle.
Wrestling is a physically-taxing sport that requires high levels of strength and power, as well as strong cardiovascular and anaerobic conditioning. Dr. Callan's 2000 journal also noted that there are physical characteristics that provide the foundation for wrestlers to be successful. They need to possess muscular strength, endurance and power, as well as anaerobic power, flexibility and cardiovascular fitness.
Weight Class Differences
Dr. Katarzyna L. Sterkowicz-Przybycien's 2011 study published in the "Journal of Human Kinetics" found that body type varied between those wrestlers in heavier classes and those in lighter classes. Professional male wrestlers who were heavier, weighing about 200 pounds, tended to fall between the mesomorph and endomorph body types. They possessed higher body fat percentages than leaner professional wrestlers. Male wrestlers who weighed about 150 pounds and participated in a lower weight class, had a greater tendency to be strictly of the mesomorph body type.