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What Is A Rehydration Clause?

what is a rehydration clause

In the world of combat sports like boxing, athletes often find loopholes to gain an advantage over their opponents.

One example is regaining water weight after the official weigh-in. This is where rehydration clauses come into to play, to promote fairness and safety in professional boxing.

Continue reading to learn all about rehydration clauses and why they are needed when athletes are cutting weight.

What is a rehydration clause in Boxing?

In boxing and other combat sports, a rehydration clause is a rule that’s included in the boxing contract between the athletes and their promoters. It is a condition that sets a limit on how much weight a fighter can gain after they have officially weighed in before their fight.

This clause aims to prevent fighters from using extreme weight gain strategies to gain an advantage on fight night. A rehydration clause helps to ensure a fair and level playing field for both the boxers.

If a fighter fails to remain under or exceeds the specified weight limit in the second weigh-in, they may face penalties such as fines or even have their fight canceled.

what is a rehydration clause

What happens when a fighter misses weight?

In boxing, when a fighter misses weight, it means that they were unable to meet the specified weight limit for their respective weight class (for example: Bantamweight) during the official weigh-in. This can happen due to a variety of reasons, such as miscalculations, excessive dehydration, or difficulty in cutting weight.

When a fighter misses weight, there are usually consequences, some minor, some serious. They can face penalties, such as fines or a percentage of their purse being deducted. Additionally, the fight itself can be canceled.

They also might be required to compete at a catchweight, where both fighters agree to fight at a weight they both agree on. Regardless, the fighter who made weight still has the option to decline the catchweight and the fight may be canceled entirely.

Failing to make weight for a big fight can be a significant setback for any fighter, as it can create an unfair disadvantage for the opponent in terms of size and strength. It’s always important for fighters to make weight by avoiding extreme weight cuts to ensure a fair fight.

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What is a rehydration clause?

In combat sports, a rehydration clause is basically a contractual condition that limits the amount of weight a fighter can regain after the official pre-fight weigh-in. Rehydration clauses are commonly used in various combat sports, including boxing, mixed martial arts (MMA), and kickboxing.

These clauses prevent fighters from engaging in extreme weight-cutting practices, where they dehydrate themselves to make weight and then rapidly rehydrate before the fight ultimately, regaining all the weight.

If an athlete exceeds the specified weight limit, they may face a variety of penalties, such as fines or disqualification. A rehydration clause helps maintain a competitive balance between athletes and ensures that fighters compete within a reasonable weight range in their respective weight classes.

what is a rehydration clause

The Purpose of Rehydration Clauses

The purpose of rehydration clauses in combat sports is to address the issue of extreme weight-cutting practices. Fighters often go through rigorous weight-cutting methods to make weight for their fights, which can involve severe dehydration and excessive cardio.

However, after the weigh-in, the fighters rehydrate and regain the weight they lost, potentially giving them a significant size and strength advantage over their opponents on the fight night. These clauses help to mitigate this advantage by imposing limits on the amount of weight a fighter can regain within a specific period of time.

All in all, these clauses aim to promote fair competition, prevent extreme weight manipulation, and ensure the safety and integrity of the sport and its athletes. This helps maintain a level playing field and reduces the risk of fighters suffering from severe dehydration-related health issues.

Weight Classes

Flyweight: Up to 52.2 kg (115 lbs)

Bantamweight: 52.3 kg – 61.2 kg (115 lbs – 135 lbs)

Featherweight: 61.3 kg – 65.8 kg (135 lbs – 145 lbs)

Lightweight: 65.9 kg – 70.3 kg (145 lbs – 155 lbs)

Welterweight: 70.4 kg – 77.1 kg (155 lbs – 170 lbs)

Middleweight: 77.2 kg – 83.9 kg (170 lbs – 185 lbs)

Light Heavyweight: 84 kg – 93 kg (185 lbs – 205 lbs)

Heavyweight: 93.1 kg – 120.2 kg (205 lbs – 265 lbs)

Purpose of Weight Classes

In combat sports, weight classes exist to ensure fair competition and promote safety among fighters. By categorizing fighters into different weight divisions, it helps to level the playing field and prevent physical mismatches.

Fighters of similar weights are more likely to have similar physical attributes and capabilities. This leads to more competitive and exciting matches as fights come down to skill and experience.

Weight classes also help to reduce the risk of severe injuries that could occur when there is a significant difference in size and strength between opponents.

Furthermore, weight classes provide structure to the sport, making it easier for fans and promoters to follow and promote their favorite fighters. This concludes that weight classes play a crucial role in maintaining fairness, safety, and the overall integrity of combat sports.


It can be concluded that rehydration clauses are an important part of combat sports. They prevent fighters from getting into a whole other weight class when they enter the ring.

A rehydration clause in the boxing world promotes fairness and ensures that neither of the boxers has an unfair advantage over the other on fight night.

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