Andy Foster, the current Executive Director at the California State Athletic Commission, recently interviewed with Joe Ferraro where Foster revealed that he is spearheading regulatory change to bring reform to the dangerous Rapid Extreme Weight Loss practices prevalent in MMA and Boxing. You can listen to the full interview here starting at the 13 minute mark:
Fosters comments include the following
Next week I’m actually going to Las Vegas to discuss this issue with the Association of Ringside Physicians.
What I can tell you is something’s going to be coming….We want something to happen. I think that (caliper measurements) they’ve had some good success with that. So I think that is certainly coming. Another thing I think is the gold standard and something I wold support is hydrostatic testing to determine the minimum weight that you can fight at for the year….Those are two ideas.
What we have right now is not working…What really got me into a panic, so to speak, was after the UFC (177) here in Sacramento, the day of the weigh-in. We have two of our fighters unable to weigh in, or licensees, because they’ve lost too much weight…I think that’s a problem. That’s want kind of stirred me to start taking action.
The A.R.P. is certainly on board with doing something. They issued their statement last year about weigh-ins…(once) we establish the lowest weight…that lowest weight be placed on the fighters permanent record both with the A.B.C. (Association of Boxing Commissions) database and the Fight Fax database….When a commission pulls the Fight Fax and looks up a record, we can see right here and we can make sure they are not contracted for less than that amount of weight
Fights between dehydrated opponents following Rapid Extreme Weight Loss practices are one of the greatest dangers in MMA, a sad irony considering weight classes are designed to protect fighters. Foster’s efforts should be encouraged by all stakeholders interested in the long term well being of the combat sports landscape.