T Nation

Short Guy and Weight for Tournaments

I am a hair under 5’6. I was recently about 165 and went to about 140 on keto… signed up for my first tournament and it looks like they are combining the light divisions to one division 159 and under…

My weight has been all over the place in life. When I graduated high school I was a pretty strong 175. 4-5 years ago I was winning trail races and running ultras down at 138.

I feel my best in the 150s in general.

So I was thinking, if I want to compete some (remember I am over 30, and a beginner so even competing is for fun), why not just stay in the 150s and deal with the taller guys?

I generally only train with guys that are taller anyhow and if I am ever in a “real” self defense situation I won’t get to pick a smaller guy…

I also wondered if at this height if competing is just not something to really do unless you want to weigh much less. In that case I might be willing to get into the 160s just to add strength. I think I could add that (since I used to have it) within a reasonable amount of time but any more than that and I used to feel winded quickly.

Right now my plan is to compete at about 150 and see how it goes. My thinking is the real disadvantage comes during the stand up. I would say 90% of the guys I train with are at least 5’10 and the vast majority is above 180. When I have gone against a taller guy in the same weight it did not seem like a big deal. There were advantages to both body types, it was just who figured out how to take advantage first (when skill is near equal).


Sorry… um what sport/discipline are you competing in?

Nevertheless I think the changes turned out pretty good for you. If you get to 150ish you are towards the upper limit of your class in a weight range you feel good at. Is this not a better spot for you then being in the low of 160 to whatever it is. For sure you’ll be more solid with another 10 pounds filling out your frame then on then some lanky giant.

Like you said there’s probably advantages of being taller or being heavier but if you get to 150s you’re already up there in this class and might be matched up against lighter and shorter (maybe… lel) opposition. Also you seem confident enough against taller opponents with a couple of inches on you. Being heavy as possible combined with how it sits on your frame will probably give you more knockout power than tall skinny dudes.

Seems to be all pros and no cons for staying in this new weight class.

It is BJJ. Interestingly as a teenager I did a lot of point style TKD with no weight classes. Obviously power was not a huge issue in those - but I found that if someone could keep me on the outside I had trouble but once I got in close I had the advantage.

I am thinking BJJ tournament will be somewhat similar as far as the takedown phase.

Either way I think you are right. Especially since I am just doing this for fun - and also to test myself against someone going full speed (not roll speed).