Should Headgear Be Required In Boxing?

Other Sports | February 5, 2021

This is a topic that can cause a lot of people to voice their opinion. With the current level of worry surrounding concussion and brain injury in the majority of professional sports, many people stand by the decision to wear headgear when boxing.

Wearing headgear for boxers certainly has its advantages. The headgear is a padded helmet that is worn by boxers who engage in sparring sessions and also by boxers competing in events. It has been proved that headgear protects very effectively against scrapes, swelling, and cuts, yet they do not protect boxers against concussions all that well. Headgear is said to reduce the impact of hits by between 40 and 60%.

So when you look at the stats, there is some validity for boxers to wear helmets when they are sparring as it reduces the risk of injury when it comes to cuts and scrapes so in that aspect, wearing them is a must, especially for youth level boxing.

Anyone participating in boxing knows the inherent risks that come with it and when a boxer gets knocked out, it is not a good look to see them go limp and collapse on the floor. So that is where headgear comes in and if they reduce the impact of hits by between 40-60% then shouldn’t all boxers wear them? Considering how brain injuries are at the forefront of everyone’s minds in today’s world.

Then there are the people who do not wear headgear when they are boxing. In 2013 the A.I.B.A or the International Boxing Association made the move to eliminate headgear for amateur boxers participating in international tournaments. Why did they do this?

They concluded that the headgear being worn was not having the effect they had hoped when it came to preventing concussions and other types of brain injuries. It was the first time in more than three decades that amateur boxers would not be wearing headgear and if they did not help prevent concussions then what is the point in wearing them?

The A.I.B.A found two problems with headgear. One was that it gave boxers a bigger area to target and the other was that the headgear gave boxers a false sense of security when in a fight.

Between 2009 and 2013, the association found that the number of times a fight had to be stopped because of repeated blows to the head fell by 43% in fights where no headgear was worn when being compared to fights that had headgear.

As you can imagine, this has caused quite the stir in the medical community and both have valid points regarding wearing headgear to not.

So it is a matter of how you choose to view it and where you stand of the health and safety of the boxers.

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Adam Schultz

Adam has authored hundreds of articles covering the NFL and football. Adam currently covers Bayern Munich in the German Bundesliga as well as Arsenal in the English Premier League. Adam promotes his work with his social media channels Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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