Visit WIAA (Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association) website for more information on rules or guidelines:
Each contestant who has braces or has a special orthodontic device on their teeth, shall be required to wear a tooth and mouth protector. A tooth and mouth protector (intraoral) which shall include an occlusal (protecting and separating the biting surfaces) and a labial (protecting the teeth and supporting structures) portion and covers the teeth and all areas of the braces or special orthodontic device with adequate thickness. This would include upper and lower teeth if devices are present on both. It is recommended the protector be properly fitted and:
1. Constructed from a model made from an impression of the individual's teeth and braces or special orthodontic device.
2. Constructed and fitted to the individual by impressing the teeth and braces or special orthodontic device into the tooth and mouth protector itself.
Rationale: The NFHS Sports Medicine Advisory Committee feels that it would be in the best interest from a safety perspective that if a wrestler does have braces, or wears a special orthodontic device on their teeth, they should be covered to protect their opponent from injury when coming in contact with the mouth and teeth. Coaches have expressed concern about frequent stoppage of matches because of blood time-out secondary to brace-inflicted wounds.
The NFHS Sports Medicine Advisory Committee strongly recommends the following protocol for Concussion management:
- No athlete shall return to play or practice on the same day of a concussion.
- Any athlete suspected of having a concussion shall be evaluated by an appropriate health-care professional that day.
- Any athlete with a concussion shall be medically cleared by an appropriate health-care professional prior to resuming participation in any practice or competition.
- After medical clearance, return to play shall follow a step-wise protocol with provisions for delayed return to play based upon the return of any signs or symptoms.
Forfeits No Longer Affect Wrestler’s One-day Limit
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (April 25, 2013) — Effective with the 2013-14 season, forfeits in high school wrestling will no longer count toward a wrestler’s daily match limit. Currently, wrestlers are limited by rule to five matches in one day.
This change in Rule 1-4-2 was one of five rules changes made by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Wrestling Rules Committee at its April 8-10 meeting in Indianapolis. The changes were subsequently approved by the NFHS Board of Directors.
“The limit on the number of matches permitted in any one calendar day was established as a safeguard to prevent any wrestler from undo fatigue, thus increasing the possibility of injury,” said Dale Pleimann, chair of the NFHS Wrestling Rules Committee and former assistant executive director of the Missouri State High School Activities Association. “Since there is no fatigue or exertion involved with accepting a forfeit, the committee felt that it was not necessary to count forfeits in the match total for any wrestler.”
In other revisions, the committee altered Rules 1-1-4 and 10-1-2 to allow the use of electronic devices for video recording and review by the wrestler or coach unless prohibited by the state high school association. Also, the use of electronic devices that enables communication between a coach and athlete during a match is still prohibited (Rule 4-3-6).
In Rule 4-5 regarding weigh-ins, the committee approved a new article concerning wrestlers who have been approved to wear an artificial limb. Rule 4-5-9 states that the wrestler must weigh-in with the artificial limb if he or she chooses to wrestle with it on. In addition, once the wrestler has weighed in while wearing the artificial limb, it cannot be removed during competition. With these revisions, competitors who have been approved by their state associations to wear an artificial limb have the option to wear or not to wear the artificial limb during competition, but must weigh-in accordingly.
“The concern was that if a wrestler weighed-in with an artificial limb (and) then decided to remove the artificial limb for the match, the wrestler’s weight without the artificial limb might not qualify the wrestler for that weight class,” Pleimann said. “The changes require that if the wrestler weighs-in with an artificial limb, then the wrestler shall wear the artificial limb when competing.”
The committee approved an addition to Rule 5-1-1 that allows for bad time if a wrestler is not given the choice of position after a two-point stalling penalty. In addition, Rule 6-6-2d was approved and adds “after a two-point stalling penalty” as an instance when an error occurs in positioning wrestlers that would result in canceled points during bad time.
In other revisions approved by the committee, Rule 4-2-1 states that starting with the 2014-15 season, if a hair cover is worn by a wrestler, it shall be attached to the ear guards. The intent of this rule change is to help maintain continuous action during competition.
Stalling Penalty Increased in High School Wrestling
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (April 27, 2012) — High school wrestlers who are called for a third stalling violation will receive a stiffer penalty beginning with the 2012-13 season. In addition to the two-point penalty assessed for a third stalling violation, the opponent will now have his or her choice of position on the next restart.
The stalling penalty revision was one of eight rules changes approved by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Wrestling Rules Committee at its April 9-11 meeting in Indianapolis. The changes were subsequently approved by the NFHS Board of Directors.
“The change to the third stalling penalty resulted from the committee’s desire to encourage wrestlers to wrestle aggressively by providing a greater incentive not to stall,” said Dale Pleimann, chair of the Wrestling Rules Committee and former assistant executive director of the Missouri State High School Activities Association. “No one likes to see a wrestler disqualified for stalling. The hope is that by increasing the third stalling penalty, a wrestler who has been penalized twice will be encouraged to pick up the pace and wrestle more aggressively.”
In other changes, the committee adjusted the current dual meet weigh-in procedure to align with the random draw.
Bob Colgate, NFHS director of sports and sports medicine and staff liaison to the Wrestling Rules Committee, said this change would provide maximum preparation and warm-up time for the first contestants scheduled to compete in a dual meet.
Three new rules were approved by the committee, including Rule 4-3-5, which states that wrestlers “may not wear wristbands, sweatbands or bicep bands during a match.” This rule was enacted in an effort to minimize risk of injury from wrestlers getting their fingers caught in an opponent’s wristband or sweatband.
Another new rule for 2012-13 is an exception to the 30-second tiebreaker. The new exception (8-2-1h) will read as follows:
“If the second injury time-out is taken at the conclusion of the first 30-second tiebreaker period and the opponent already has the choice at the beginning of the second 30-second tiebreaker period, the opponent would then have the added choice at the first restart after the beginning of the second 30-second tiebreaker period.”
This provision was a rule change last year for the regulation match and will now apply to the overtime as well.
Rule 10-2-9 will be added to next year’s rules to address what happens when two wrestlers in the championship bracket simultaneously cannot continue a match. If both wrestlers cannot continue because of disqualification for stalling or having their injury or blood time elapse, the wrestler who is leading on points at the time the match is terminated will continue in the consolation bracket. If the match is tied at the time of termination, neither wrestler will continue.
Following are the other three changes approved by the committee:
4-1-1a: Language has been updated to describe the wrestler’s singlet, and the change will also allow the T-shirt with no sleeves to be worn under the one-piece singlet when approved by the referee.
5-11-2i: Rules language was expanded to complete the near-fall and penalty sequence.
10-3-6 and 10-3-7: The tournament bracket format was revised to allow more flexibility in conducting a tournament.
Weight classes changed in high school wrestling
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (April 26, 2011) — The most significant changes in weight classes in high school wrestling in 23 years will take place in the 2011-12 season.
In its April 4-6 meeting in Indianapolis, the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Wrestling Rules Committee approved an upward shift of the weight classes, beginning with the 103-pound class moving to 106 pounds, which resulted in new weights for 10 of the 14 classes. The changes in weight classes, along with 17 other rules revisions, were subsequently approved by the NFHS Board of Directors.
The 14 weight classes approved by the committee for 2011-12 are as follows: 106 (pounds), 113, 120, 126, 132, 138, 145, 152, 160, 170, 182, 195, 220 and 285. Three middle weight classes – 145, 152 and 160 – were retained, although they are 7-8-9 in order now rather than 8-9-10. The largest weight class (285 pounds) remains unchanged as well.
“The change in weight classes resulted from a three-to-four year process utilizing data from the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) Optimal Performance Calculator,” said Dale Pleimann, chair of the NFHS Wrestling Rules Committee and former assistant executive director of the Missouri State High School Activities Association. “The rules committee was able to analyze data from almost 200,000 wrestlers across the country, with the goal to create weight classes that have approximately seven percent of the wrestlers in each weight class.
The last wholesale shift in weight classes occurred in 1988, when the lowest weight class was increased from 98 to 103 pounds. The only other changes since then were in 2002, when the number of classes went from 13 to 14 and the 215-pound weight class became mandatory, and in 2006, when the 275-pound class was increased to 285 pounds.
Among changes in wrestling holds, the Figure 4 around the head has been ruled an illegal hold/maneuver. Previously, the Figure 4 was illegal around the body or both legs.
“This move was being used by high school wrestlers more and more on the head, so to minimize the risk of injury, the committee voted to outlaw the Figure 4 on the head as well as around the body and both legs,” said Bob Colgate, NFHS assistant director and liaison to the Wrestling Rules Committee.
Another significant change was made in Rule 2-1-3, which now makes the boundary line inbounds and, thus, expands the wrestling area. Previously, a wrestler was out of bounds if he or she was touching any part of the 2-inch-wide line which marks the wrestling area.
An additional exception was added to Rule 8-2-1 stating that if the second injury time-out is taken at the conclusion of the second period, and the opponent already has the choice at the beginning of the third period, the opponent would then have the added choice at the first restart after the beginning of the third period.
“Previously, at the end of the second period and before the third period, Wrestler A takes his or her second injury time-out, which now gives the choice to Wrestler B,” Colgate said. “However, it’s already Wrestler B’s choice by virtue of the original flip of the disk. Therefore, Wrestler B gains no advantage or benefit from Wrestler A’s second injury time-out. With this change, Wrestler B would now have his or her choice at the first restart after the beginning of the third period.”
Appropriate Dress for Weigh-ins Addressed in High School Wrestling
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (April 26, 2010) — A revision in the appropriate dress for weigh-ins in high school wrestling was among four rules changes approved by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Wrestling Rules Committee at its April 5-7 meeting in Indianapolis. The changes, which were subsequently approved by the NFHS Board of Directors, will take effect with the 2010-11 season.
Regarding weigh-ins, previously both male and female contestants had to weigh in wearing “no more than a suitable undergarment.” Beginning next year, specific language has been added regarding what constitutes a “suitable undergarment.” Male and female contestants will be required to wear a suitable undergarment that completely covers the buttocks and the groin area. In addition, for female contestants the suitable undergarment must also cover the breasts.
The committee also addressed the process for an offensive wrestler assuming a legal starting position. The following statement has been added to Rule 5-20-9:
“Once the offensive wrestler has assumed a legal starting position and is stationary, the referee shall verbally say ‘set’ and then pause momentarily before starting wrestling.”
“This rule change will eliminate either wrestler gaining an advantage by using a rolling start,” Colgate said. “It also eliminates the need for the offensive wrestler using a specific sequence when assuming a legal starting position, including the optional offensive starting position.”
Effective with the 2010-11 high school wrestling season, any contestant who shows signs, symptoms or behaviors consistent with a concussion shall be removed immediately from the match and shall not return to competition until cleared by an appropriate health-care professional.
The previous rule directed officials to remove an athlete from competition if “apparently unconscious.” The previous rule also allowed for return to competition based on written authorization by a medical doctor.
“Given that the vast majority of concussions do not include a loss of consciousness, but that athletes often show obvious evidence of concussion, the NFHS Sports Medicine Advisory Committee (SMAC) strongly believes that referees must continue to be empowered to remove these athletes from competition, thus protecting them from further injury,” said Dr. Michael Koester, chair of the SMAC. “Continued participation in any sport following a concussion can lead to worsening concussion symptoms, as well as increased risk for further injury to the brain and even death.
The Wrestling Rules Committee also added the “rear-standing, double-knee kickback” to the list of illegal maneuvers. Colgate said this maneuver, which is being used more frequently at the high school level, clearly puts the opposing wrestler in a dangerous situation and at a high risk for injury.