FINALLY! UFC Officials Detail Plans To Halt Unhealthy Weight Cutting Practices

Following the unfortunate health scare of UFC lightweight contender Khabib Nurmagomedov, and several UFC females the likes of Bec Rawling’s and Cat Zingano, it would appear as if UFC officials are starting to take the issue of weight cutting seriously.

In a recent lengthy interview with Sherdog, Jeff Novitzky, vice president of athlete health and performance for the UFC, gave an update on what the UFC is doing about the problem.

As transcribed by Sherdog

“My concern, first and foremost, is for the safety of the fighter,” he told “Anytime a situation like [Nurmagomedov’s] comes up, we have to evaluate what we are doing and whether we are doing enough. We have seen dramatic improvements with weight management so far and the amount of weight that is being cut by our athletes during fight week. When fighters check in for fight week, the first thing we do when they get off the plane is put them on the scales to see where they’re at. I’ve been accumulating those numbers ever since I started with UFC a couple of years ago. Because of the ban on the IVs, really, the whole weight management issue was brought to my attention very quickly.

“We’ve reached out to different experts all over the world who specialize in fields like dehydration so we can educate our fighters and explain why certain things are not good for them,” Novitzky added. “It’s important that they are aware of the short- and long-term effects of extreme cuts and how it will inevitably affect their performance if they continue to use extreme methods. Since I’ve been accumulating the numbers, there has been a significant drop off in those kinds of weight-cutting methods. UFC 209 was a perfect example of that. The fighters really didn’t have a lot of weight to lose for the card, but when you have a high-profile pullout like Khabib, those things tend to be overlooked.”

“I’m really excited about the new campus that we will be opening in Las Vegas,” he said. “It should be open next month, and it’s going to include a performance unit. The facility will have the latest and greatest training equipment. There will also be two full-time nutritionists on the staff. That’s going to allow us to bring in our athletes, whether it’s at the beginning of their training camp or at the end of their training camp.

“We are hoping that we can provide them with information on where their weight should be four weeks out, two weeks out, etcetera,” Novitzky added. “We won’t only be telling them where their weight should be; we will also be explaining how they can get their weight down with nutrition plans. This will be completely free for all the fighters to avail of.”