The purpose of this study was to examine the ability of preseason body composition, build, and strength to predict wrestling success during an upcoming competitive wrestling season. Underwater weighings to assess body composition, anthropometric determinations of body build characteristics, and isokinetic measures of muscular strength were performed on 55 high school wrestlers. Wrestling success was evaluated by the wrestlers won-loss record and state or regional tournament appearance during the season. Multiple discriminant analysis identified two discriminant functions (DF1 and DF2) which represented two distinct groups of underlying variables. DF1 reflected primarily muscular strength relative to body weight variables and discriminatted best between average and novice Wrestlers. DF2 reflected mainly body composition and build characteristics and discriminated best between the highly-skilled and novice wrestlers. DF1 and DF2 each accounted for approximately 50 percent of the variance between the three groups of wrestlers. The discriminant functions correctly classified 56.4 percent of the wrestlers (p < 0.05). Within the groups, the discriminant functions correctly classified 64 percent of the highly-skilled and 75 percent of the novice wrestlers, but only 8 percent of the average wrestlers. These results indicate that preseason body composition, build, and strength are fairly sensitive predictors of wrestling success in highly-skilled and novice wrestlers, but not in average wrestlers.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/craig_cisar/28/