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Doctor exposes flaws in ONE Championship hydration testing and admits to helping “big names” cheat weigh-ins

ONE Championship’s hydration testing is once again back under fire.

In December 2015, Chinese athlete Yang Jian Bing passed away, reportedly due to complications from a weight cut for a bout in ONE Championship. Just weeks after the contest, the promotion instituted a new weight-cutting policy that involved hydration testing.

The new system sees athlete’s weights checked routinely, renamed divisions, and more. The biggest part of the new system has to do with checking fighter’s urine to make sure they’re hydrated. While the policy was praised back in 2015, it’s come under fire over the last years.

The reason being that there’s little transparency. Fighters who have fought in the promotion have also admitted to cutting weight, with some athletes jumping between weight classes as well. If there was truly no, or little to no weight cutting, the constant jump in divisions seems impossible.

In a new video from Jason Hartley of MMA On Point, this subject was discussed at length. In the video, Dr. Oliver Barley, who’s had a history in combat sports and weight cutting, revealed the issues with ONE Championship’s system.

The doctor explained in the video that he’s personally helped several fighters cheat the system. While he didn’t name any fighters, the doctor stated that he helped several “big names” pass the test. According to Dr. Barley, it’s incredibly easy to do so, and ONE Championship is aware of that.

Eduard Folayang, Shinya Aoki, ONE Championship, A New Era
Image: @onechampionship on Instagram

“I’m not convinced that urinary test hydration testing is a great measure in almost any situation. But, I am extremely not convinced that it’s useful in the case of weight cutting,” Dr. Barley said. “These hydration tests were not designed for someone who is going to specifically aggressively dehydrate themselves and then rehydrate themselves.” (h/t BloodyElbow)

If we pulled in 100 people off the street, my guess is 40 percent of them would probably fail a urinary hydration test… There’s actually a good chance that you’ll be declared dehydrated even if you’re not.”

“…Tricking the test is super easy,” Dr. Barley explained. He says it simply has to do with drinking distilled water at certain points to trick your body in thinking you’re over-hydrated. You put the fluid back in but not the electrolytes. So then, the concentration of your blood really plummets. The kidneys actually think you’re over-hydrated and they start emptying urine out and the urine comes out clear.”

“It’s ridiculously easy. Currently, I am batting 100 percent in getting people to trick the test. I have [a] instruction thing on my phone that I just copy and paste and send it to them whenever anyone asks me.”

What do you make of these comments? What do you make of ONE Championship’s hydration testing? Sound off in the comment section below PENN Nation!

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